Daily Archives: April 13, 2013

The ghost in the machine

Back in the early seventies I went to a party in an old apartment in West Philadelphia. Sometime during the evening an inordinate number of people started gathering in the bathroom, and not for what you might think. Turns out the decrepit ventilator fan had a reputation for sounding like horse race commentary. Jack thinks we must have all been high and had a mass auditory hallucination, but believe me, you could clearly hear a horse race.

“…and they’re comin’ down the stretch and it’s Bob’s Your Uncle in the lead with Mad Hatter comin’ along the outside….”

You couldn’t hear actual words, but the tone and rhythm were absolutely pitch perfect. That ventilator was a marvel.

We have something like that on EV. At some point every day one of us hears a radio on in the background. Seriously. Sometimes it sounds like a soap opera. Sometimes it’s news. Last night I heard gospel selections from the Alan Lomax collection. Drew heard it when he was here. We’ve spent hours searching for the source of the sound and come up empty every time. We can enumerate every radio onboard and know whether it’s on or off. But still we can’t find the phantom radio.

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Let’s just go


Friday was a bad day here in Royal Island anchorage. It’s pretty but rolly and completely without services, as far as we know. We stayed aboard and tried to hear weather broadcasts on our little Sony backup receiver. So many contradictory forecasts that we both had meltdowns. Marce said its now your job and went down to our cabin and flopped face first on the bed and was done for the day. I tried to twiddle the knobs on the radio and heard voices on several occasions but did I pickup anything useful, like go or no go…no.

By evening I made my makeup meal, spaghetti & wine, it seemed to help.

Morning saw us in a similar mood but after the throughly contradictory forecasts I said let’s just go. Sail covers off, not as easy as it sounds, anchor up with a large smashed crab stuck to it, bad omen? We’ll see.

We powered through the narrow bouncy entrance and raised sail. This feels really great, we even sailed right through Little Egg and Egg pass out into Providence Channel with nowhere near the SSE wind they promised just moments ago, but we will keep her heading as East as we can, as long as we can but still sail.

The breeze is still backing around towards East which is pushing us higher and higher North.

A bit of sloppy sail handing caused extra stress on our old worn out jib. Now we have two small tears in the bottom panel which should go nicely with the tear in the top panel that Colin put in the jib while doing our rig survey. Ah-no I’m going to have to go forward to put sail tape on the lengthening medium sized tears, hopefully it’ll stop when it hits the seam. Luckily our brand spankin’ new jib is in the forward locker, but wouldn’t want to try to bend that on in this sea state.



Fingers crossed, touch wood, the winds will let us sail East or nearly so.

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