Another good day of sailing! With a 25 to 30 kts of NWly breeze and 2 to 2.5 mtrs of SWly swell, Mhadei cruised along through the day clocking almost 100 Nm since morning. If only these conditions last for the next couple of days! Though the forecast is for lighter winds for the next two days and already the wind seems to be reducing in strength. Its amazing how much difference sailing downwind makes as opposed to upwind. With similar conditions upwind we would have been slamming around as we did in the Trades, now, going downwind, anything below 20 kts is suddenly a cause for concern!
This evening as I was making dinner, I heard a loud thrashing in the cockpit such as I have never heard before on the boat. After almost a month of solitude it made me jump, so left everything and took a look outside, only to find a passenger onboard! Not sure if the bird is hurt, tired or just missed water and landed onboard. Being a hospitable boat had to offer him something so in the absence of fresh fish, which I presume is its only diet, tried some dried prawns but it does not seem to be interested. Doesn't seem to be too scared of me as I discovered when I patted it a little and took these snaps. It tries to go out of the cockpit once in a while, needs a bit of help to climb up but then comes back instead of flying away. Not sure if it is unable to fly because it is hurt or it requires a running start to take off as I have seen them doing when they land on water. These type of birds have been following us for days now and we have developed an unspoken companionship so they are always welcome to hitch a ride! I think I will just let him be for the night. Will need to watch my step if I need to go out at night if the wind shifts or dies out lest I step on the poor thing. Maybe Adm Awati will be able to figure out what bird it is!