(The Atlantic Ocean)
We left Wilmington Marine Center at noon on December 4th for what would be 4 nights on the open sea. With Caroline and Logan as our hosts, captains, and teachers we were headed to the Bahamas!
The planned route was to head east over the Gulf Stream and continue to a predetermined waypoint, at which point we’d begin our tack back and down into the Bahamas with a favorable wind.
After four nights offshore the days and hours kind of blur together. Each night we operated in shifts. Caroline and I would have a three-hour shift, then the boys would take over for the next three hours, before we started all over again. There are no words that can explain being out in the middle of the ocean under the stars. I felt like I was in a snow globe as this never-ending blanket of stars wrapped all around me running into the discernible horizon.
It was nice being on shift with someone. Having someone to talk to, to swear to that you just saw a shooting star, and to slightly panic with when we started getting pelted with flying fish! In the dark of the night, a flying fish hitting the dodger is an unknown, uneasy sound. In the light of the day, a flying fish landing on the deck, means the newby has to bite its head off. Or at least this is what Logan convinced Greg it meant!
The first chilly night quickly turned to gorgeous weather and we spent the days sunbathing on the deck, and the boys even went for a drag-shower off the back. The Logan caught a fish, a mahi mahi, on our first morning on the water. At this point though, we were all still just getting our sea legs – and sea stomachs – and no one was in the mood to clean a fish.
Time is completely different on a boat – hours and days just fly by without you knowing where they went. Your angle to the world is also completely different on a boat. Gemini, being a monohaul, heels under sail. I don’t think there’s a direction we didn’t sleep in our berth, and you finally realize exactly why there are all these conveniently placed handles all over the boat.
To put it simply, our first offshore sailing experience was a blast. We learnt so much and are much more confident on the water. The unknown is steadily changing to known, and we can’t thank Logan and Caroline enough for helping us.