Friday, February 28, 2014

Slooooowww internet

My plan was to update the blog twice daily during our Mardi Gras cruise. Unfortunately my internet connection, through the Verizon MiFi, is less than stellar. In fact, it is barely up to 56k modem speeds. So I may need to wait until we return to upload all the updates. Especially the photos. But, I will continue to try during the trip as I occasionally get a brief period of "almost" high speed connectivity.

Mardi Gras 2014 cruise

Well, as usual, nothing goes as planned! Our intention was to get underway at 6:00 am this morning, but that warm bed just felt too good. So, up at 6:30 and thought we were ready to depart. But, it turns out there was a list of things that needed to be dealt with first, so we did not pull out of the marina until a little after 8:00 am.

It is a beautiful day, and it looks like we are going to be able to make our goal of getting to Pensacola Beach by tomorrow afternoon. That is, until we cleared the CSX RR bridge and reached open water. The wind was forecast to be 5-10 knots, but it is blowing 20+ knots, and we have some serious wave action. So, I think we are going to modify our destination for today, and stop at Cat Island rather than Horn Island. We can be at Cat Island by 11:00 am, and get anchored in the lee of the island and out of the wave action. That will keep the Admiral happy, which means everyone is happy!

As we crossed Bay St. Louis on our way to the CSX RR bridge, running on autopilot, I noticed that the hydraulic steering pump was sounding a bit strange. I zipped up to the flying bridge to check it, and found the reservoir almost out of hydraulic fluid. The pump was sucking some air. Turned of the primary autopilot and enabled the backup autopilot (Paula) while I got some fluid and topped off the reservoir. Just in time I got the primary unit back online, as the backup unit was starting to make some strange noises, too. If I did not know better, I could almost think it was talking to me. Almost sounded likes words, even complaints. Hmmm.  ;)