Really Close

At the moment , at 0700 on Sunday morning, April 28 2013, we are 29 miles from Honolulu. Motoring because the wind died yesterday. There were two delays yesterday as the engine fuel system shut the engine down. The first time took a couple of hours to diagnose and treat, but the 2nd occasion at 0200 this morning was much more quickly remedied. Some “crap” from the fuel tank clogged first the pipe leading into the racor filter housing, then, the second time it actually clogged the passage between the bowl and the filter chamber of the racor housing. This ‘crap’ looks a bit like very old paper towel, but the final pathology awaits further study. I have cleaned the fuel tank a few times, but it seems that it is time for another go. Fortunately the racor housing is on the bulkhead outside the engine room , so is easily accessed. A small hand pump was very good to get the system primed afterwards. As we worked we were escorted most of the day by a US navy aircraft carrier and attendant helicopters, very considerate and helpful. So, with any luck at all, we will be secured alongside at ALa Wai around noon today, having sailed 2230 miles in 15 days. Time to wash the salt and grime off persons, equipment, clothes, and boat. Time to eat some salads and fresh fruit. Time to walk or run. Time to sample the local brews. With Doug aboard we left Puerto Montt Jan 23 , 2013. We have sailed 7300 miles in the ensuing 3 months. He has dealt admirably with the task of adapting to a strange boat and skipper with many idiosyncrasies (the boat and perhaps the skipper, but not Doug) A week at Valdivia, a week at Juan Fernandez , a week at Mangareva, and 4 days at the Marquesas. Lots of light winds following ,and recently fresh winds ahead of the beam. Equipment problems were actually few: a corroded power wire to the antenna tuner, the sun protective fabric on the jib was shredded in a squall, and yesterday the fuel system issues. Nevertheless , before I leave Hawaii with new crew, there is a good list of jobs to do aboard over the next few weeks. Today for the first time in weeks I have the big slr camera out to snap some bird shots. It has just been too wet or rough for weeks to use that camera. Before that, in the full equatorial tropics, there just were very few birds. cheers to the crew of the Silas Crosby ,and to the doughty ship herself! ###

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