Back in Christmas Island, yet again! I keep meeting people on shore who do a double take and ask why we are still here. Yes, that is the question.
We ventured out a second time on Sunday, but returned in 2 days. This time the engine was overheating. The raw water pump was sucking air while we were punching into 30 knots of NE wind. I decided to return to Christmas Island and add some ballast, which we have now done, loading 12 tons of coral rock. Possibly more important Engineer Charles swapped out the raw water pump with the spare one and the flow has almost doubled. These pumps should handle a bit of air and we are confident now that this one will do it.
Tomorrow (Wednesday Hawaii date), we depart from Christmas and hope for New Years in Honolulu. Weather is still nasty here with 20-30 knots of NE wind and rain, but the next 2 days promise a small window of SE and light winds.
We are hoping for enough easting to make the long haul to Hawaii on a close reach and not a beat. This makes a huge difference in speed, fuel usage and wear and tear on the ship.
Aloha and Merry Christmas to all from S/V KWAI