FROM 1-26. Through the Barn Door

Oct 25, 2005 - 1043hrs UTC │Confucius and Lieh-Tzu: The Tao of Berri

1043hrs 25 Oct 2005 UTC 37’12”S 017’57”E Ref 485

DB: dmg 79,(V fishy!)5891 SEC gps 72 66/44.
Steve – sailmail spotty but getting some connects – perhaps you could send all by sailmail tfn, then check it daily and anything I haven’t managed to collect after say 24 hours, send satcom or just drop if necessary – saves a bit of money. Also, could you please post Chris Nailer’s quotation from the Analects – I love it. Might inspire someone else to do a bit of reading.

Ed: as requested….
Here’s what Lieh-Tzu says about it all:

“Confucius was looking at Lu-liang waterfall. The water dropped two hundred feet, streaming foam for thirty miles; it was a place where fish and turtles and crocodiles could not swim, but he saw a man swimming there. Taking him for someone in difficulties, he sent a disciple along the bank to pull him up. But after swimming a few hundred yards the man came out, and strolled along singing under the bank with his hair hanging down his back.

Confucius proceeded to question him:

— ‘I thought you were a ghost, but now I can look you over I see you are human. May I ask whether you have a Way to tread in water?’

— ‘No, I have no Way. I began in what is native to me, grew up in what is natural to me, matured by trusting destiny. I enter the vortex with the inflow and leave with the outflow, follow the Way of the water instead of imposing a course of my own; this is how I tread it.’

— ‘What do you mean “beginning in what is native to you, growing up in what is natural to you, maturing by trusting destiny?”‘

—’Having been born on land I am safe on land – this is native to me. Having grown up in the water I am safe in the water – this is natural to me. I do it without knowing how I do it – this is trusting destiny.’

Sailing again, directly below the centre of the high. Sunshine and sparkles. We’re taking a punt and going east – seems to me that’s more sensible than playing to something behind us that may not happen. More evidence of water mass over the deck: the liferaft is double lashed to 3 strongpoints – You do learn from experience occasionally! – it has moved and is loose to the extent that an errant sail tie from the main has got between the canister and the base – and come out the other side! Now fixed.

My little free fall across the boat – I found my sandal in a spot it could only have got to if the boat rolled past about 120 degrees. This fits with the other evidence – I think (and felt) that I was tossed upwards over the leecloth pole into two vertical lines supporting the pole from the grab rail. This tore the leecloth from the screws and washers holding it down and I continued across the boat, still going up, and hit the coachroof at the angle at the top of the window and then fell vertically into Pete’s bunk as the boat righted itself. Fun. Bunk now consists of a wrap around cocoon of spectra – will be ok as long as the shelf side that anchors it can hold my weight in another knockdown. I think t can, but we aren’t going to have any more.

A small quote from Bernie – I don’t think he will mind:

“They’ve shown you don’t need a new mega yacht or a big boat to do this stuff. It’s more about your own abilities and tenacity than big toys and a big budget.
Go guys!”

Right on, mate – that’s precisely the message and all the best with the RBI and AZAB – might see you there! And thanks for your donation. Rob, happy new boat and the Scillys is a great place to aim for. Then the world! Johno and Diana and all the PB’s – yeah and G’day!

Ed: from Pete (yep, he is out there too!)…
Hi to everyone out there, I have been quiet lately as transmission of my blathering is a problem but I think the time has come for me to relieve some frustration via the email.

I’m now just a wee bit pissed off with this weather. I just checked my log and today is the ninth day in a row of us having to sail with some form of storm gear up. We just seem to be getting a parade of fast and tough lows coming through from the west occasionally they are separated by a fart sized high which gives us clear skies and 25 kts for perhaps half a day, during which time we can get outside and get some fresh air to the body. Yesterday we ran under storm jib most of the day but later the wind eased and changed direction so we poled out the no.5 to port and poled the storm jib to starboard and headed a bit east of north trying to get away from the stronger winds to the south. This worked well but we still had very big seas which occasionally crashed onto the side of the boat…..Those five dots represent a period of 41 hours.

I had just written “boat” when the first knockdown happened, it was like an instant flip one second vertical the next horizontal. When it hit I was flung to starboard but got a leg out in time to stop me crashing into the galley. I also managed to keep hold of the computer which took a flying leap. I saw all of Alex’s gear which was stored on the port side beside the nav table flying past my head. A large drawer which is about two foot long and full of heavy things like spare batteries numerous rolls of duct tape etc launched itself from under the nav table and crashed into the front of the galley.

If someone was there it would have broken a leg. Alex ended up in my bunk, he must have broken through the bottom of the lee cloth and dropped vertically to my bunk when the boat went horizontal. We cleared the debris and rescued what we could then another knockdown, two more followed. We had to get the storm jib down so on with the party gear and after waiting for a lull I ran forward to the bow and Alex worked the cockpit. Clipped the harness on forward, pulled the sail down unclipped the halyard, removed, the hanks, undid the sheets, quickly rolled up the sail and stuffed it down the forward hatch.

It all took perhaps 2 to 3 minutes at no time did I look back at the waves, if you do you seem to get mesmerised by them and you lose the rhythm of your task. Now back in the cockpit Alex had tightened the halyard and retrieved the sheets, we then had a quick tidy up of the cockpit then back down. No more knockdowns after that but some waves went close, I just can’t imagine how many tons of water Berri rolled off her back that night.

After that incident I was more than pissed off I was quite shitty with the examiner. I was due to talk about “cabin fever” a malaise that gets you after you have been cooped up inside in these sort of conditions. There is no cure for the fever the Good Doctor doesn’t work as the required dosage could cause problems, one just has to wait it out and relief comes when the wind drops and normal sailing resumes. When cooped inside in bad weather most enjoyable things are impossible, a good book is useless as you can’t concentrate long enough. You just have to sit or lie wedged in to stop all movement.

There are physical responses to this of course, yesterday morning I woke with an aching jaw, my teeth have been ground down to mere stumps of their former selves. My stomach muscles have improved out of sight, if these lengths of sprung steel could wrap themselves around a barbell I’m sure they could now bench press at least 200 pounds. Further down the muscles controlling the sphincter have now achieved a grip capable of throttling a Texas size boa constrictor but I don’t think I should go on any more with that analogy. So now things have improved but not for long as the grib forecast says more of the same in a couple
of days. So till the next time I intend to enjoy myself while I can. Cheers…..Pete.

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