West Butterfy

I haven’t consumed anything but the fallen grapes, an orange, water, and a protein bar since setting sail yesterday. I don’t feel hunger or exhaustion or seasickness, I feel every nerve in my body. And they are all screaming “what the hell are you doing out here?”

The feeling reminds me of first time I did a sweat lodge. Before going in a woman from the Lakota community said, “First you meet the fire, then you meet your fear of the fire, then you meet yourself.” She said, “Its only If you push beyond the fear that the rewards bloom.” The first time I met that fire I was ready to crawl out of there and lay in a river before it even gotten started, but I breathed into it and she was right, wildflowers started popping up all over my life.

I try to remember that today. To breath through this. It has been so challenging that I want a pod of dolphins to carry my ship to the nearest island. North, South, East, West, I don’t care anymore the direction. Hell put me on a rainbow and send me to mars. Anywhere but here.

I knew this weather was coming too. It’s just that nothing could have truly prepared me for it.

It all started at midnight. The boat accidentally tacked it’s way back to San Diego while under the command of the autopilot. I got her flipped around and set up the self-steering wind vane and she tacked again. I figured that there was too much head sail for the boat to stay balanced so I furled the Genoa and along its way a line got wrapped around its sheet. I have to deal with that soon, but I don’t want to go up to the bow with a knife in this big swell nor with the wind gusting so hard, so I have settled for sailing at an average of 4 knots under reefed main and staysail only.

The waves have been slapping us hard all day and they look massive. I don’t know if they are the 9 ft. that was originally predicated or what but every time Juniper slams down a wave her speed slows down dramatically. Also two waves crashed right into the cockpit and one knocked down the self-steering wind vane.

Every once in a while I hear a high pitched voice calling out from the sea. I can’t discern what is being said but I think it’s laughing at me. I know it’s just my imagination or something on the boat, but the voice picked the right day to come out to taunt me.

Oh and there is more…. two of my prism lights are leaking onto the only berths that are on the high side of the boat. A chain plait that I just replaced is also leaking. My mainsail stack pack has come out of most of its holdings. A piece of rubber fell off of my boom. An avocado smeared its guts all over the cabin wall. And my staysail sheet is monkeyed beyond the usual repair of applied pressure elsewhere.

I can fix all of these things but the boat is too wet and the ride too wild right now.

On a brighter note…

Last night I sailed through the banks that are southeast of San Clemente Island. I have always heard about them from fisherman. And how there is a really shallow part where someone got shipwrecked. It was crazy sailing through an area way out in the middle of the Pacific with such little depth. The banks have cool names too like; West Butterfly, The Condom, and Mushroom. Sounds like they were named in the 60s by somebody on acid.

Ok. Ta-ta. I’ll just be down here hiding in the cabin from the waves. I don’t know what these messages look like when I post to the blog from my satellite. Do they look ok? Can someone send a screenshot to the sea email? Is any of this interesting?

29 Replies to “West Butterfy”

  1. I don’t even know where to begin. You have me laughing and crying all at the same time! I’m no sailor and I can barely float on my back on a good day but, you my dear, are freakin’ AMAZING!!! And the only voices that are laughing at you are the ones on the shore who don’t have the guts you have…ignore them and SAIL ON!!!
    Love you!!
    PS…your blog is rendering perfectly on our end 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  2. No, no, no. Turn around and go back. It’ll be ok. Really. We need to turn around. Your sensible Juniper was trying to tell you that. I feel I’m there with you and I want to commit mutiny, except I can’t sail. So I’m screaming, if you can hear me over the wind and waves, “take me home!” I do wish you the best and am praying for you, but golly! Sometimes turning back is the smartest and bravest thing to do. (No, you don’t know me. God sent me. ;))

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Please keep writing as it is the only way I know you are ok. Do you remember what you told me to do? Think positive and pray. I am trying my hardest through my tears and smiles. I can feel your heightened senses and I am right there with you hanging on by a thread or two. I will look forward to your next post. Xoxo

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Olivia, it IS interesting. I hesitate to comment because it just scares me, and I don’t want any of that to transfer over to you. I’m in awe of what you’re doing and will continue to follow you. Best of luck!!

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Olivia, it is BEYOND interesting. It is fascinating! You will be my bedtime read, wish and prayer.Never a question in my mind that you will not accomplish whatever it is you set out to do. Godspeed, our young explorer,Godspeed.

    Liked by 1 person

  6. This blog is so exciting and descriptive. Most of us will never experience what you have so bravely undertaken. So here we are waiting and anticipating your blogs and we are glad to get them. For those of us who know nothing about sailing, it gives us a view, okay, I scary view. Praying for you daily. You can do this. God bless. Peggy York

    Liked by 1 person

  7. Breathing deep and calming my mind as I read along. Saying a smudge prayer of encouragement & protection. Holding you close as I watch you fly/sail/soar. You are right where you’re meant to be… beaming from ear-to-ear. ❤️

    Liked by 1 person

  8. I know exactly what you’re going through….
    I sailed all the way across Lake Maumelle one time 🤣
    Only kidding. I have a new hero.
    I say a prayer for you every day and look forward to reading your post every night.

    Liked by 1 person

  9. Your blog comes through effortlessly as you battle forces of God and demons of man. Go forth with courage and steadfastness; what an overcomer you are! I’m praying for you in your incredible adventure. Blessings and joy, grace and peace!

    Liked by 1 person

  10. I’m a friend of your mother’s from high school days. We don’t see each other much, but we always share a giggle when we do.
    I’m overwhelmed with excitement for you (it goes without saying that my prayers are heading in every direction for calmer seas).
    Thank you for sharing your journey.

    Liked by 1 person

  11. Congratulations! Your doing it ! Please make sure you eat the avocados not decorate the cabin with them! Haha! And eat stay hydrated! Not with salt water! Another Haha! Lots of hugs !

    Liked by 1 person

  12. Yes all of this is interesting, yes the format looks fine! You are amazing! ❤

    [image: Screen Shot 2019-08-03 at 4.09.21 PM.png]

    On Fri, Aug 2, 2019 at 7:19 PM Wilderness of Waves wrote:

    > wildernessofwaves posted: “I haven’t consumed anything but the fallen > grapes, an orange, water, and a protein bar since setting sail yesterday. I > don’t feel hunger or exhaustion or seasickness, I feel every nerve in my > body. And they are all screaming “what the hell are you doing o” >

    Liked by 1 person

    1. On Sat, Aug 3, 2019 at 3:09 PM Wilderness of Waves wrote:

      > Mara Mayer commented: “Yes all of this is interesting, yes the format > looks fine! You are amazing! PM.png]

      Liked by 1 person

  13. So, I am a sailor. When you describe the mussed rigging I can absolutely see exactly what you are talking about. Do you have radar? While many are nervoust I ask your fans to consider that William Bligh (of Mutiny on the Bounty) traveled almost 4,000 miles with 18 men and a freeboard of only 5 inches. Sailing has everything to do with balance. I URGE YOU TO USE A JIBE PREVENTER for downwind.

    Liked by 1 person

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