Vanilla Yogurt and Greek Goddesses–Great Bear Rainforest Day 3

September 4, Wednesday

Day 3 of my adventure was relatively uneventful. We left our anchorage somewhere on the southernmost tip of Alaska and motored until 4:00 p.m. to our destination–Prince Rupert Sound, British Columbia, where we would pass through customs and stock up on provisions for the rest of the journey, including groceries, wine, and liquor. I bought a bottle of Courvoisier, a baseball cap to keep the sun out of my eyes, and a Prince Rupert Sound thermal top. It had been cold during the afternoon of Day 2 and during our travel on Day 3, and I was tempted to buy some warmer clothes for the days ahead. I decided instead I could layer what I had. Five layers had sufficed earlier in the day. How much colder could it get?

It turns out I made the right call, as the remainder of our trip was unseasonably warm and dry. Shorts-and-tank-tops warm. Captain Dave repeatedly expressed his surprise at our good luck. At this point, I still thought of him as Captain Dave. Later in the trip, when he started sleeping with one of the guests, I would think of him as Captain Dumbass. Which reminds me: I should back up and mention my travel companions on our 54-foot sailboat charter.

There were six guests, including me. First up: Jerry and Eleanor, a retired couple from Orcas Island (Captain Dave’s home base). Jerry was a former librarian and practiced photographer, having taught classes at a university. Eleanor was an archivist. Having a photography teacher on board came in handy. He taught me quite a bit about the art of photography and my Nikon D3200, which made it apparent how much I still don’t know. Even so, I found myself coveting his Canon equipment and ginormous zoom lens. Eleanor seemed okay with this, however, and Jerry and I would become pals. Rounding out the group was an Australian couple, George and Danielle, and George’s adult (32) daughter, Phaedra. (In Greek mythology, Phaedra was an adulteress. Odd choice of names, but as it turns out, somewhat apt.) Phaedra’s stepmother, Danielle, an artist who chose themes when packing clothing for a trip (we were treated to earth tones and blues), would eat only whole food. For example, only whole milk organic plain yogurt was acceptable. If it was low fat, it was unacceptable. If it was whole milk, but flavored, it was unacceptable. If it was whole milk and plain, but not organic, it was marginal. When the chef (Lindsay) baked, Danielle became deeply distressed. She found anything containing any amount of sugar alarming. She did enjoy alcoholic beverages, however. George oft repeated on the trip, “I can check out at any time.” But then who would clean his adult daughter’s crab claws for her while she pouted because the guests had objected to her carnal activities with Captain Dave? I would have repeated visions of ย Veruca Salt, “I want that duck, Daddy, and I want it now.” (I’m getting ahead of things, but like Captain Dave, I’m lacking in control.)

Shortly before the trip, Phaedra had returned from India, where she had worked for CARE International. Upon her arrival on the American continent, she spent a week at Burning Man. Phaedra had long blonde hair and neon orange nails, which she would touch up repeatedly on the deck of Captain Dumbass’s sailboat. Captain Dumbass did not object. (My father would have throttled me had I whipped out a bottle of nail polish on his boat.) Captain Dumbass was somewhat of a dwarf. I don’t mean he simply was short. He was. But he also had physical characteristics of dwarfism–large head, prominent forehead, and malformed bones in his hands, feet, and legs. Captain Dumbass did not let this stop him. He was in the middle of a divorce from wife #2, and would soon be schtupping the Australian Greek Goddess Phaedra (while her father and stepmother slumbered in their berth on the only-54-foot boat). In addition, as I would learn from Lindsay, the soon-to-be-disgusted chef, Captain Dumbass had been writing a love song for months for a woman he had met on-line, Carol, who was flying in from some land-locked state to meet him. She would be joining the other guests on his next journey, to determine whether to go through with quitting her job to move to Orcas Island to be with him. So he’d go from phucking Phaedra, to screwing his on-line love in a matter of days.

I shall pause here for now and save the rest of the story for later entries. I leave you with a series of photos from a plain vanilla (very bad when it comes to yogurt, not so bad when it comes to scenery) Day 3. After stocking up on provisions at Prince Rupert, we motored to our anchorage for the night at Lowe Inlet, passing a gorgeous waterfall on the way. We took the dinghy to shore shortly before sunset to look for wolves. We saw wolf and grizzly prints in the mud, but no mammalian wildlife. Back on the boat, Lindsay would try her hand fishing. She caught three small Chinook salmon, but no keepers this day. Patience, Grasshopper.


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