Day 33 Sun 8/23 Where’s Andy Survivor & Treasure at Sea

(moved from previous night’s post) I was exhausted, so rested while Bryan was at the helm for much of the night. At 12:30 am I asked if he needed anything, and he said, “yes, a rest.” I took the helm and headed towards the Shinnecock buoy. As we neared the entrance I tried to rouse Bryan to no avail, but once the depth alarm went off signaling we were close to shore he jumped up. He was sure he had only dozed for 10 minutes but it was 1:45am. We were again going against the tide, and at Shinnecock it goes suddenly from deep waters into a small entrance with dramatic waves. Bryan was swearing like a sailor as we watched as the dinghy behind us catch a wave, zoom ahead of the stern, then back so that the painter snapped hard, throwing the dinghy sideways at an 80 degree angle, where it very nearly missed being filled by a cresting waive, then teetering on top of the next wave like a water skier. I told Bryan to look forward where we were going and I’d watch the dingy. I calmly kept him advised that Where’s Andy was still connected by its improvised bow fitting as it continued its acrobatic stunts. When we finally passed through the entrance and anchored we toasted cups of apple sauce to Where’s Andy, faithfully trailing sailboat Avocet.

After several hours sleep we were off again, this time with calmer winds and buttery sunshine. We watched many sparkling pods of silver bunker fish pass by, the occasional dolphin and whale spout in the distance, and for a couple hours the winds were just right to set out cushions and sit together on the bow while the self-steering was able to handle the boat in the right direction for our tack. We chased down balloons that were floating by, and Bryan tried to snag them with a large hook. I wish people would stop the practice of releasing balloons. From sea they look like buoys or a person swimming, and then the plastic  and metallic ink breaks down, fish and sea animals eat it. While scoping for balloons I saw an object that looked bigger. We sailed up to it and it was a large sealed plastic case. Perhaps it is pirate booty thrown overboard, perhaps some other treasure, or perhaps just a float that would be an annoyance for a small boat to hit. Whatever the case, it didn’t belong in the ocean so I encouraged Bryan to hoist it aboard and we will check it out when we return to shore.