Update | October 30, 2014

Naalehu AnthonyWritten by Nāʻālehu Anthony.

The most stunning aspect of this time of day is the ocean. The sky reflects its color in the tops of the waves as they march north-northeast to south.

The sun just set with a small green flash over our forward starboard beam. With the sun setting, we have calm seas and a steady 10-knot wind. The golden horizon blends from a soft orange to purple to blue as you look up to the heavens. The three quarter moon is directly overhead, quietly hiding behind the sails as we coast along. We were using it to steer this afternoon before the sun got low enough for us to use. Crews are starting to expect stars in certain parts of the heavens.  Lehuakona (Antares) and Scorpio will appear shortly. Their position is awkward to us because we are so south.  Orion should be overhead when the sky deepens to navy blue.  The most stunning aspect of this time of day is the ocean. The sky reflects its color in the tops of the waves as they march north-northeast to south.

Everyone on both canoes are in good health and very high spirits. Hikianalia has been doing an excellent job at pacing us. The crew has worked tirelessly to keep next to us, even in light wind. They came up next to us to shoot pictures at sunset. Our hybrid rig is working pretty well.  I’m sure it photographs great. We’ve modified jibs all day to try to ease the steering and gain speed. Winds, like forecasted, have been light all day. We’ve been getting 3-4 and sometimes eek out 5 knots out of what wind we do see.  It’s a great lesson for steering and adjusting sails. Tonight’s dinner was pretty epic. Uncle Mel cooked us loco moco for dinner, complete with gravy on the rice and fried egg on top. The pupu was fish fried (ono) in panko with mayo wasabi sauce. The salad was tomatoes and cucumbers. All of this was served on a bed of cabbage for presentation. This will go down as one of the most memorable meals that I have had in my 2 decades of sailing with these canoes.

We are looking at being about half way to Raul, or about 267 miles along the course line. The team of navigation is great to watch and the roles unfold. Bruce is Bruce, ever the gentle teacher. He’s been running pop quizzes on the navigators all day.  What star is that? What course are we on? How many miles true on the last watch? What do those clouds mean? The answers are usually carefully thought out and then discussed after. I feel so blessed to watch it all unfold. In fact, as I write this Bruce is lecturing about the southern circumpolar stars which we don’t see in Hawaiʻi.  Great lesson. Bruce comments that they have had a good variation of all different conditions that challenge the navigation team.  All of these are great learning opportunities for them as they work their way to navigating a canoe on their own.

Tomorrow will bring a new set of gifts to these canoes. They will come in the form of lessons that all of us can learn and hopefully begin to teach as we sail in the wake of our ancestors

Me ka ha’aha’a,

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