There was nothing in the way with the
exception of Vatu Leile, a miserable little island that persisted in
poking up through the sea some twenty miles to the west-southwest -
just where I wanted to go.
Of course, it seemed quite simple to
avoid it by steering a course that would pass it eight or ten miles
to the north. It was a black night, and we were running before the
wind. The man at the wheel must be told what direction to steer in
order to miss Vatu Leile. But what direction? I turned me to the
navigation books. "True Course" I lighted upon. The very thing!
What I wanted was the true course. I read eagerly on:
"The True Course is the angle made with the meridian by a straight
line on the chart drawn to connect the ship's position with the
place bound to."
Just what I wanted. The Snark's position was at the western
entrance of the passage between Viti Levu and Mbengha. The
immediate place she was bound to was a place on the chart ten miles
north of Vatu Leile. I pricked that place off on the chart with my
dividers, and with my parallel rulers found that west-by-south was
the true course. I had but to give it to the man at the wheel and
the Snark would win her way to the safety of the open sea.
But alas and alack and lucky for me, I read on.
Enter page number
Page 220 of 305
Words from 58422 to 58676