Our visa expired on Tuesday, so we absolutely had to leave. Monday was one of our typical get ready to go days. Eric changed the transmission oil and oil filter, which he describes as a “messy job”. Lots of oil spills, but easy to contain with oil aborbant pads. We went to the nicest grocery store in town, The Carrefour, to stock up on food. The Carrefour in Tahiti was one of the nicest grocery stores we have ever been to nicer even than Gelson’s. Like the Carrefour in Tahiti, it is inside a new, modern mall. The mall here is much bigger and nicer than the Tahiti one, which set up high expectations for the grocery store. We are disappointed to report this one wasn’t nearly as good. This one has a nice bakery, like the one in Tahiti. But there was no beautiful selection of cheeses and dairy products. The selection of western foods is somewhat limited. The eggs are lying on a table, and you take as many as you want and put them in a plastic bag, like produce, and they ring you up per egg. And, believe it or not, there was even less selection of frozen heat and serve foods here than in Tahiti. Good thing we had stocked up in Australia. It was raining really hard, causing traffic to virtually stop going both directions, so the trip to the grocery store took much longer than planned due to long transit times.
Tuesday morning we were planning to leave at 1100, trying to time it so we were on an outgoing current. Everyone had warned us it would be a very rough ride all the way to Singapore since we were going against the seasonal monsoon winds. We looked at the weather report. Wind on our nose and head seas (waves coming at us from the front). While we have been in much bigger wind and waves than what was forecast, we’d never been in head seas before, so we weren’t sure what the ride was going to be like. We have heard that head seas are much harder to take coming from the front.
The ride from south to north Bali was uneventful. We were flying along at 8 knots, which was fun. As soon as we came out from the protection of the island, things became quite uncomfortable. We had 25 knots of wind on our front port beam (wind hitting us on the front left corner of the boat), with occasional gusts up to 34. The waves were about 8 feet and hitting at rapid intervals. Most of the waves were head on, but once in a while we’d get one of those nasty side rollers. Most of the waves were coming over the bow and smacking into the windshield. It was definitely much worse than the forecast for today. Our speed immediately slowed down to 5 knots.
Like the passage from Suwarrow to Niue, it was too rough to do anything at all. No reading, no watching movies nothing but staring at the clock, willing the minutes to go by faster. It was raining intermittently, so we had everything closed up. Once it became unbearably stuffy, we started the generator and turned on the air conditioning. As is typical in rough seas, only the salon air conditioner worked and the other two wouldn’t stay on.
Through the night, the wind and waves both picked up, going to 30 knots of wind with gusts up to 36, and 10 foot seas. The waves were very steep. We slowed to 2.5 to 4.5 knots, averaging about 3. The rocking and wave crashing was more forceful than ever. We literally had to hold on for dear life with both hands to move around. We know we used this analogy already, but it is certainly more appropriate here than when we used it before. Kosmos was bucking like a rodeo bull. Sitting in your chair you would get tossed about just like sitting on a bull. There were plenty of times our stomachs would drop to our knees as we slid down a wave, literally feeling like we were on a roller coaster ride. There were plenty of waves that crashed on us very hard.
At 0500 Wednesday morning Christi woke Eric up for his watch. He immediately became violently ill. He has never been so sick. He spent the entire day on the couch, and every time he tried to move, eat or drink, he would start another round of vomiting. Christi was feeling pretty nauseous, as well, though never actually threw up. She nibbled on crackers all day and drank little. She would do watch for as long as she could, take a nap for 1 2 hours, then resume watch, since Eric really was too sick to be doing watch. Normally, she takes 2 to 4 hour naps between watches.
To be continued…