A cruiser’s case of the Mondays

Blasting into a sudden 15 to 25 knot northerly towards the Kenai Peninsula, Yahtzee heeled sharply to starboard with the wind. Cutting through a steep chop, white water pushed off the bow and I did my best to steer us through it to windward.

With a steady rain soaking me, I could barely see wave sets through my sodden glasses let alone the tell tales on the genoa. It was somewhere around four in the morning on Monday and I’d just told Jill I’d take her watch, she could stay below to sleep with the boys instead of coming on deck in this mess. She didn’t need to deal with this. I did.

With daylight arriving in earnest, the miles wore on and I tried to keep my mind in the game. We’d already come 120 miles from Afognak Island, north of Kodiak, and there was no turning around, no pulling in somewhere for rest. Not yet, anyway.

Gripping the helm with cold bare hands, rain still pounding hard on deck and running down the inside of my jacket, my mood turned sour. I cursed the wind: it was supposed to be south. I cursed the rain: it was supposed to be clear. I cursed our blownout sails that were struggling to keep us pointing to windward: they were supposed to be moving Yahtzee to weather like I knew they should.

But then I stopped myself. Snapped out of it. “Weather? Who cares. I don’t. Sail the boat, Andy. Embrace it.” I told myself while wiping drops of rain from my face.

We weren’t in any danger and the conditions weren’t that bad. It just wasn’t what I’d expected. Plus, this was sailing. I was doing what I love with the people I love.

In essence, I decided, it was the cruiser’s version of a “case of the Mondays”. And on we went.

Weaving through tall, rocky islands off the Kenai Peninsula a couple hours and cups of coffee later, I turned to the south to look back across the Gulf of Alaska. Much to my surprise, I watched as the trailing edge of the rain moved over us to reveal bursts of sunshine. With the passing of the rain, the wind did an abrupt about-face and switched to the south. Because of course it did.

Reaching now under a morning sun that dried me and the cockpit, all I could do was laugh at the whole situation. The unpredictable weather had humbled me. Proving once again that it makes the rules, I play by them.

18 thoughts on “A cruiser’s case of the Mondays

  1. When I read your stories… I feel like I’m right there!! What a Monday!! Thanks for that journey!..your Monday was much more exciting than mine was!! Love you guys! Stay safe and enjoy every minute! xo

  2. Way to go Andy! Overcoming those “Monday blues”. I hate when you get that first trickle of water running down the back of your neck on the inside of your jacket!
    Good man not having Jill do her watch.
    I hope for reaches for you.

  3. I see you are anchored on the north side of Fox Island Spit. Looks spectacular! But the Google Earth pictures show snow on the Spit, island, and surrounding shore. Brrrr. I know it is a dated photo. I am loving cruising with you!

    1. Thanks, Barbara! Fox Island Spit was amazing. There was no snow there so it must have been an old photo. Actually, it was so warm and sunny that we even jumped in the water!

  4. As an Alaskan sailor, loved this. But get some good gloves! Lots and lots, so you can change them when they soak though (which they will)

    1. Thanks, Lisa! After cruising in the Salish Sea for three winters, we have many warm glove options. I’m just not much of glove guy and am stubborn when it comes to wearing them. So I guess cold hands are my own fault:)

  5. The bad days make the adventures that we remember. Otherwise, only a few fantastic days only stand out. The rest are just forgotten.

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