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Sailing Tallships

Good morning everyone. Barry here, reporting in from Galveston after our trip back from Corpus Christi. With an impending cold front approaching the Texas coast on Tuesday morning and winds forecast to come NE we “beat feet” back to Galveston. I stood the mid to 4 watch. The trip back was largely uneventful. A light southerly tailwind was welcome but the apparent wind was not enough to give us the easting we desired so the 450 hp power plant gave us the boost we needed to keep a 7-8 knot pace through the night.

The big excitement came while traveling in the fairway, the channel that passes 10 or so miles off the coast with occasional intersection leading to major harbors. At 0200 we came across 4 seismic research vessels working cables across the bottom in the fairway. A few radio calls established the idea that small floats across the fairway were connected to the seismic cables with wire rope and that wrapping one of these up in Elissa’s propeller would hinder our progress. These folks working in the oil industry are very good at what they do and managed to guide us on radar through the “mine field” and safely on our way. We had at hand a night vision scope that turned up no sign of buoys but that is not surprising in the 1-2 foot seas. From there on out the shrimp boats and oil platforms (by the dozens) created the usual slalom course encountered in these waters. We missed the full moon we had on the trip down to Corpus so the boat watch was on pins and needles keeping us safe through the night.

I was so gratified and thankful to see how seriously the Elissa volunteers take their jobs. You can’t imagine how hard they work to keep this ship alive and well. Teaching them is a joy. We arrived back in Galveston a day early, a heart wrenching decision in the face of knowing how hard these folks have worked to bring her to life. But that is the nature of sailing and the weather pays no heed to schedules. Tomorrow I fly home. This weekend I will be attending an Emergency Medical Services seminar, from the frying pan into the fire. But I am looking forward to getting back to Jen, the kids, the pace of home life and thinking about all you folks and getting ready for next summer.

Have a great day. Be well. Do good.

PS Our Canada goose friend was waiting here at the dock to welcome us and make me feel a little more homesick. I like that goose.

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