Saturday, October 27, 2012

Dick and the tsunami

8:30 pm HST (Hawaiian time): Dick was asleep in the cockpit when a kayaker came by to tell him a tsunami was coming toward Hawaii and to turn on the VHF radio. 10:30 was the estimated arrival time. That’s when Dick called me (11:30 pm PST) to let me know and to discuss what he should do. I thought he should row to shore, get to higher ground and we’d hope for the best for our boat at anchor in the harbor.

Boat after boat, about 20 in all, were making their way from the marina docks headed for the Kauai Channel. One of them told Dick you only needed to be about one mile off-shore to be safe. Dick thought he could do this on his own. Usually, I’m at the helm motoring as needed to get over the anchor so Dick can pull it up and onto the deck. On his own this time, he motored forward, put the engine in neutral, ran up to the bow and pulled up the slack … repeat … repeat.* He got the anchor up but couldn’t undo the bridle so loose ends and line were piled haphazardly on the deck and somewhat secured to one of the shrouds. Nevertheless, he was on his way.

Outside the break wall, the engine died. The anchor rode had fallen back into the water and was wound around the prop. He managed to use the mast winch to pull it up about 10 feet at a time. He wasn’t far enough away from shore yet and the wind was pushing him toward land. He got on the radio to see if anyone could help him with a tow. Kevin in a catamaran came over and towed him for about 30 minutes.* His boat didn’t have much power so Dick was cut loose, but now able to put up a sail.

He sailed all night. At dawn he began making his way back to Nawiliwili Harbor and sailed to anchor in almost the same spot we were in before.

Side note: one boat owner put his power boat on a trailer. Unfortunately, as he was driving away, he hit a power pole and knocked out all the electricity in the harbor area.

*The two times he had to pull up the anchor would turn out to be the beginning of a health crisis to occur Fri 2 November.

1 comment:

  1. This story helps to confirm my suspicion that stress manifests itself in different people in many different ways. All the best to you both..........Marion