The 1980 Voyage Home
Nainoa Thompson, with Will Kyselka
account of the 1980 return voyage from Hawai'i to Tahiti is a chapter
from Will Kyselka's Ocean in Mind. Will explains the genesis of
the writing: "The words are Nainoa's, the form is mine. The words
come from tape recordings, talk-story times, and a paper he submitted in
English 101 at the University of Hawai'i. Much of the original is
reflective--Nainoa recalling, remembering, relating, piecing together
thinking in retrospect what the experience must have been at the time.
To preserve the immediacy of events, I've put it all into present
tense." Hokule'a left Pape'ete, Tahiti on May 13,
1980 and sighted Mauna Kea on the Big Island of Hawai'i on June 4,
seems to me that the way I shivered at night in the cold aboard Hokule'a
in the storm after we left Hilo was the same as when I was young and
diving at night along the reef. The wind and the ocean supply the cold,
and I understand nature through exposure to it. I cannot really convey
the feeling within me of that wind any more than I can tell you what it
is like being the navigator. Yet that is my task in this chapter.
on the cliffs of Matavai Bay at Point Venus. Each morning for five days
we've been watching for the wind. But, just as on our departure from
Hawai'i, the wind has not yet been ready to grace the sails and allow Hokule'a
to glide along sea roads traveled by explorers of old. We've been
waiting for a straight wind, a wind to depart on. Today we have that
wind. It's not an ideal wind but it is one that we'll depart on.
canoe is ready for the sea. A new boom replaces the one we broke on the
trip down. Stress had also caused the laminations on the crossbeams to
begin separating. Metal plates were bolted to them to strengthen them
for the return trip.
late afternoon when we depart Tahiti. A ceremony once again affirms the
bond between Polynesian peoples and sends us on our way. The setting sun
is casting its last rays on high clouds as we leave Tahiti behind in SW
Na Leo. Soon the first stars appear and the heavens demand our
attention. Thoughts of the hospitality of our Tahitian friends and
family are put away and we are left with only ourselves and our
Southern Cross is now high in the sky behind us. Each night for the next
three or four weeks we'll see it slightly lower, and by the time we
reach Hawai'i it will be at the horizon. It will be ten days yet before
we'll see the North Star. During the next few hours the tiny island of
Teti'aroa will be moving along our star compass from 'Akau to
Hema as we pass close to it.
first dawning of light is the important time for the navigator. It is
the time for judging the sea and swells relative to the positions of the
stars, a time for the reading of the weather for the day. Light creates
the day and the colors in the clouds and in the mists in the salt air.
Mau has internalized countless sunrises, so he knows how to read the
weather and when it is right to sail. For him this knowledge is the
means of survival of his island's people. For us this canoe is our way
of understanding the people of old.
without instruments is a personal act. You must know the principles but
you cannot reduce wayfinding to a set of formal operations. I'm
constantly discovering new things that are useful in getting the canoe
this trip I've been getting glimpses of a greater world of navigation,
far beyond what I prepared myself for. I learn through my culture, but
that alone is not enough: it does not provide all the right answers.
When I understand things without knowing how, that's when I know I've
taken great steps.
knowing where the moon is: One night it was really cloudy. It was nearly
a Full Moon but clouds were so thick you couldn't see it. Still I knew
where it was even though there was no reason for me to know. I could
have figured it out analytically, but I already knew. Here's a
separation between knowledge and understanding. At times like that I
know, but I don't know how I know.
is not a problem. I thought it might be but it isn't. When you accept
responsibility internally you don't need all that much sleep. In a way
you've got no choice. You make the decision to be here, and once you're
here you're accountable.
says he never sleeps when he's navigating. He says his eyes are closed
but inside he's not. Somehow he rests enough to take care of the fatigue
and he maintains his orientation. It's fascinating, this man's
job is getting the canoe there, not to find out what ancient people did.
That understanding comes as a result of a task gladly accepted. This is
a unique situation-being responsible for giving direction and getting
the canoe there without ever having done it before. It's full of
a world out here that I didn't know anything about until forced into it
by my choices. Analytic thinking alone cannot bring understanding, and
I'm glad of that. We aren't searching for understanding, but
understanding is coming as a result of the search.
a sense there were no choices once we got into certain situations. That
won't be reflected in the transcripts because at the time it happens I
cannot express how I know. I don't understand at the time,.and I still
cannot express it. The transcripts are pictures of the struggle I feel
at a particular moment.
The first rays of dawn hurt my eyes after straining all night to
maintain the sailing course. I have an uneasy feeling this morning, for
I know that the thin sheet-like layer of cirrus cloud that moved in last
night can mean a change in the weather-a change from the regular
trades-and that can make navigating difficult. It was difficult last
night, at times impossible, even to identify the stars that did show
through the breaks. This morning the cloud is too high and too thin to
cause shadows, but it makes the sea look more gray than blue.
soreness in my eyes at dawn comes from the strain and fatigue of keeping
Hokule'a on course. Most of the night we steered by the
moon. It is now two days past Full Moon phase, the night of the month
that Hawaiians call La'au Ku Kahi. Fortunately for us it
was a big moon, nearly opposite the sun, and its light was with us most
of the night. When it is nearly round and close to the horizon we use it
sun rose this morning in the house of 'Aina on the star compass.
It is most reassuring (and a compliment to the crew) to find both the
canoe and the rising sun in their correct positions. For myself and the
crew who had the steering duty for the last four hours, relaxation is
now in order as the sun comes up.
the sun on the horizon we have a solid steering sign. It's in the house
of 'Aina, so we can assume that we sailed a most accurate course
during the starless night. I feel the urge to give in to my fatigue, but
it is not yet time to sleep.
steering swells in line with the sun are clearer and more defined than
they were yesterday. Each day since we left the doldrums the swells have
been getting more and more defined, sorting themselves out in the
dominant trade winds.
hours. I cannot relax on this first day of June. Because of the
persistent high cloudiness, we have not seen stars very much in the last
ten days. We're going 6.5 knots, but I do not have the vital information
needed on our position change. I cannot relax. That's the hardest part
for me, both mentally and physically. The conflict in mind and body
brings tenseness and fatigue at a time I most need to be alert.
estimate that we have traveled 260 miles without positioning ourselves
by the stars. That's an empty feeling as we approach the target of the
steer most of the day off the wind. Since morning the wind has shifted
to east northeast, a change that brings a familiar coolness that reminds
me of the normal trade winds of Hawai'i. I have pondered many times the
familiarity of new experiences during the voyage, as if somehow I have
had such experiences before. In understanding the blending of my ocean
past as a youth with the discipline of sailing lies the most cherished
parts of myself.
the wind swings northeast as it did today, it confuses the swells that
we steer by. They lag behind the changing wind direction. For myself,
such unsorted swells and waves also leave me confused.
we're using the high cloudiness that blocked the stars the last two
nights. It's a special circumstance that allows us to use the
clouds-very high clouds, moving slowly, very far away. Under these
conditions the apparent motion of the canoe will have little effect on
the bearing of these nearly stationary clouds.
The June sun sets in the house of 'Aina, two houses north of due
west. High clouds in the west around the sun take on a deep red color.
The evening is dark, for it is three days beyond Full Moon, and tonight
it will rise about three hours after sunset. John Kruse is at the
steering sweep, keeping the direction of Na Leo as we sail from
day into night. The true wind is right on our beam, and the canoe is
quite dry as we race away from the crests of ocean swells.
air is getting cooler as we increase our distance from the equator. How
important the yellow foul-weather gear is to me when I contemplate
another night of exposure to wind and waves and rain through ten hours
of darkness! So many the reasons to admire the first Polynesian voyagers
who sailed without such gear. How natural to be proud of my heritage.
search the sky this evening for those stars that target the land, but
the ocean horizon is clouded over. I have a very unsettled feeling. When
we're nearing land we need the stars most-but now they're not there.
Instead of getting clues from my eyesight, I'm left to my imagination,
and I think of drops of water 10 miles distant blocking the light that
has been traveling for 40 years to reach us.
course made good all day is between Haka and Na Leo. I estimate
that we've traveled 72 miles and that we're 13.50 north of the equator,
7.5 houses west of the course line. I believe the islands of Hawai'i to
be in the direction of Manu, 550 miles northwest. In the back of my
mind, though, I'm bothered by our yesterday's sighting of the manu ku
[white tern]. How can this land bird be so far from land? How can it
have flown so far if I'm to believe that it is away from its home island
only between dawn and dusk?
Since sunset last night I estimate we sailed 60 to 70 miles north
northwest. A few stars of the land showed in the middle of the night
through gaps in the cloudy sky indicating that we are 140 north of the
eastern horizon is showing a lot of red as sunrise approaches. High
cirrus clouds are still present, with cumulus clouds at low levels
showing the surface trade winds. Bruce takes command of the steering
sweep as we enter the most critical phase of the voyage- targeting the
Hawaiian Islands. We have very little room for error.
sun is replacing night with day. The bearings of the swells are somewhat
confusing, apparently because of the changing direction of the wind.
Whether it is that way in the sea or just in my mind, I am not sure.
I've had little sleep in the last few days. Concentrating is a chore.
This is the first time on the voyage, either down or up, that I'm
feeling a little sick-a chest cold. Maybe it is anxiety, wondering if we
have been accurate with our course. Are the Hawaiian Islands in the
direction of northwest 'Aina? Uncertainty occupies my mind. But
when forced to make a decision, I know that I have only mind and
memory-and faith in myself. Without that I'm lost.
doing 6 knots off the wind. Steering is difficult. Hokule'a
is constantly trying to round itself to the windward in an attempt to
parallel its hulls with the dominant swells. It takes skill and ability
to anticipate the effect of the oncoming swells. Fully loaded, Hokule'a
weighs nearly 10 tons, and that's a lot of weight to control. Once a
steersman loses control to the swells there is very little that can be
done. Experience is the steersman's greatest teacher.
The high clouds disappear and leave the trade wind cumulus, a very good
clue to steady trade winds. We have a light lunch, and the crew spends
most of the day steering and trimming the sails. Bruce, who is the
primary fisherman on this voyage, is constantly tending to the fishing
lines. This leg we have been running larger lures than we have run in
the past. Even though we have not caught as many fish as we did on the
other voyages, those we have hooked have been comparatively big ones. We
picked up one nearly 100-pound marlin, a 50-pound sailfish, and a
30-pound mahimahi. We also lost at the gaff an 'ahi that I estimated to
be 60 pounds. We had our slim share of small aku, kawakawa.
diet aboard Hokule'a is basically canned, packaged, and
dried food. All our fresh provisions were eaten, or they were tossed
overboard because of spoilage. Last to go were the citrus fruits. A
frequent topic of conversation, as we get closer to land, is that of the
first things we will eat when we arrive home.
Ah Hee has become our official cook-unofficially. Right from the start
of the trip he has taken over in the kitchen. I am certain at times I
have seen him fighting over the right to the pots and pans in the
galley. Good meals can at times be one of the few things to look forward
to at sea, and cooking is not easy at sea on Hokule'a.
the sun nears its setting place on the horizon the canoe is being
cleaned. Some of the crew are washing themselves with a salt water bath.
Others are putting on their foul-weather gear, preparing for another
night at sea. Nathan Wong is steering. Nate sails in the dual role of
crew member and physician. Medically we are all healthy and sound. We're
grateful for that. We've had, our share of minor sunburns and rashes,
along with Kainoa Lee's bad cold. It is comforting to have Nate on board
in case of a serious problem.
land birds today. Their absence stirs doubts in my mind. But if my
estimate of where we are is correct, we must still be out of the flight
range of land birds anyway. It's their absence that makes me uneasy.
As the sun sets in the west northwest, I estimate the island of Hawai'i
to be two houses to the right in the direction of northwest Manu, 360
traveled, as I estimate it, 72 miles since sunrise in the direction of Na
Leo. Winds are 18 knots out of the east northeast as we're sailing 6
knots abeam to the true wind. The wind and swells are steady and
straight. With the sky clear of high clouds, it appears we will have
good weather at the time we need it most. I feel good about that.
Au steers Hokule'a in the direction of the setting sun. In
the fading glow of twilight he uses the light of the brighter, very
distant stars to guide him as we sail ever toward Hawai'i, our homeland.
Southern Cross is nearing the southern horizon. Our timing for landfall
is critical in that certain groups of stars must be in the right
position relative to the sun. The Southern Cross is the most important
of the constellations for us now. It is getting toward the west and will
be available in its useful position for only a week or ten days more.
I watch the Southern Cross, so does Mau. He has kept himself uninvolved
with the navigation and sailing of Hokule'a Navigation
takes constant memorization of our course made good. For the most part
Mau has divorced himself from that effort; yet as the stars of Hawai'i
begin to show in the twilight, anyone with that knowledge cannot help
but be concerned about the accuracy of the course we have kept. Are we
truly to the east and upwind of Hawai'i?
is easy on this cloudless night, but in the early morning hours I tend
to become tired. The more I force myself to stay awake, the more
fatigued and less alert I become. I need rest to clear my mind.
are nearing our destination. Mau scans his ocean heaven for important
stars. It is as if I know what he is feeling. I know because of what I
have gone through on this voyage. My thoughts are sad as I realize the
wealth that he has given me, in sharing navigational secrets in the
context of the tradition of his culture. My thoughts are sad that the
voyage will soon end and with it his teachings, for he must go back home
to Satawal. He is a man of priceless gifts. A man who took our hands, as
if we were children, and walked us through it all upon the wake of our
ancestors. As I watch him look at the land stars he knows so well, I
cannot help but feel sad.
begin this night full of anticipation, and at the same time I'm very
tired. Through this experience I'm beginning to understand the suffering
of Mau in maintaining his heritage, a difficult task in a rapidly
changing world. I don't know the depth of the hurt he feels in seeing
more of his culture lost with each generation.
passes with only a partial cloud cover. Stars make their paths across
the sky. We're able to use the land stars of the Southern Cross
(Hawaiians also know it as Newa), Atria in the Southern Triangle, and
the two brilliant stars, Alpha and Beta Centauri. Hokupa'a,
the North Star, is gaining altitude each night, and from this array of
stars I judge South Point to be 180 miles to the north and 220 miles
west of us.
Early morning brings a freshening wind of 22 knots from east northeast.
I'm cold after another full night of being on the open deck of Hokule'a.
The two bright stars in Aries, Sharatan and Hamal, are rising. At this
time of year their appearance on the horizon brings the first light of
dawn-a good sign for Snake's watch, which has been on since two this
morning. Since we have no time-pieces aboard, our simple routines are
kept by the light of the stars and sun. The brilliant red and purple
colors of these beautiful clouds of dawn, though, may be a sign of bad
Lee is steering as the sun breaks the ocean horizon, on this our 21st
day at sea. The sun's orange rays are guiding him on his course,
northwest Na Leo. With the increased wind speed we are traveling
at 8 knots toward the Big Island in the direction of Noio. If we
maintain our course and speed, the island should be in 'Aina
tonight, not much more than 210 miles away. I feel very uneasy about
such estimates: what if we sail more than 200 miles from here and find
cover is 40 percent, not a comforting thought now that we are so close
am awakened by loud conversation. I see the sun still near the eastern
horizon, and I realize that I have slept only a short while. My mind and
body agree. Off the left side of the canoe is a group of white birds. As
far as I can tell they're mostly the white tropic bird, koa'e kea. But
within the group is at least one manu ku, the bird that indicates
land. The ocean is filled with white caps, so white birds flying low are
hard to see. We watch as long as we can see them. Apparently they're
fishing, not flying to or from land. Nevertheless, it puts me more at
ease in my upcoming sleep to know that we're in the circle of manu ku
and near Hawai'i.
clear to all of us that land is near. We set a watch to keep a sharp
lookout for any sign of it. I still feel that we are south and somewhat
east of our target, so we hold a course between northwest Na Leo
and Nalani. We do not want to sail to the west of the Big Island, so
we'll hold that course until we can get a good star clue tonight.
day seems to pass slower than any other day. We're still straining to
see the land. The optimism in seeing land birds in the morning is being
tested by the length of the day. In the minds of us all lies the shape
of the land.
was sitting on the aft navigator's platform this afternoon and Steve was
sleeping on the forward platform. Suddenly I saw a brown boobie floating
on the water about 70 feet off the starboard bow. Just at the moment we
were sailing past the resting bird, Steve woke up. He saw it, jumped up
and shouted, "Ring-necked mallard! Ring-necked mallard!" I was
astonished with his enthusiasm and with that misidentification. I looked
at him as he seemed to turn to me to see if he had any reason to think
he was correct.
it was fatigue or merely the absurdity of the situation; anyway I did
not even feel the need to react. I just continued studying the ocean as
Hokule'a sailed past the boobie. Steve straightened
himself and collected his wits as if nothing had happened. Had he been
right, this "ringed-necked mallard" definitely would have been
off-course and in deep trouble. But I guess birds of the land occupy
even the dreams of those who sail in search of new islands.
We use the last moments of the day to look for birds and any other clues
the night high clouds move in from the southwest, and on the southern
horizon we see the first signs of a build-up of rain squalls-both signs
of changing weather. Today was the first day in six that we were able to
enjoy relatively clear skies, yet that clarity is now being threatened.
winds have heightened to 18 knots. This morning I estimated our distance
from land as 210 miles. But almost as if I need to cushion myself from
the increasing doubt that is building up in me, just for no reason I
changed the distance to the Big Island to 300 miles. Due to my
inexperience or immaturity (or both), I changed my thinking to allow the
Big Island to be that far away. A cushion allows for human error and
gives us a reason not to panic if we do not see the islands by tomorrow
comes in the early evening twilight. Crew members, now used to the ways
of the sea, already have on their foul-weather gear. The clouds are
moving with extreme uniformity-distinct cloud streets with rows of
cumulus nimbus clouds paralleling each other, equally spaced, and all of
the same altitude. Soon the rows of clouds encompass the world of the
canoe. As we sail abeam to the wind and rain, we pass from rows of rain
to rows of clear sky and on into the night of our 21st day at sea.
the stars overhead are visible between the rows of rain. Stars for the
land may not show themselves if the rain should stay all night. But
let's not think of such things so early in the night with land so close.
I search for the land in the direction of a particular group of stars,
all I see are those rows of rain clouds that we just passed through. But
to the east of south I see a break in the clouds, a gap traveling at a
speed different from the prevailing trades. I watch and hope it will not
change form or continuity, so not to allow the gap to give a clear
vision of the stars I seek. As I watch I know the night is very early,
and that such stars will be in their correct positions for the land I
gap in the clouds moves closer to the south. First to appear are the
faint stars to the east of what I seek. Moments later, with
anticipation, the land stars show themselves in the positions I need
them to be. I stare till I'm sure. Now I know by our latitude and dead
reckoning that we are close. I turn to my right to see Mau and Mike
Tongg staring at the same thing. Nothing is said, for nature has told us
all that we need to know.
of the night passes with rain. Not until early morning do I see the
North Star. The rain makes the sky more clear. Just before the rising
moon is Maui's Fishhook (Scorpius) appearing through a break in the
clouds. What a magnificent sight, the barb of the Fishhook in the
direction of the center of the Milky Way! High above these clouds and at
the top of Mauna Kea, astronomers may right now have telescopes aimed
toward that galactic center. A few months ago I was up there in that
cold, studying the stars. Thoughts of the old and new blend in my mind.
plays tricks with my mind and senses. Not knowing if it's imaginary or
real, I struggle with visions of towering mountains appearing above dark
rain clouds, much like a child who believes clouds are what things are
made of. Continuously I question whether I can feel unusual swell
patterns that might be backwash off the Hamakua coast. Is
that the sound of surf crashing on the cliffs? Rain and cloud are
blocking our vision. Such thoughts running through my mind are not based
on logic but rather imagination kindled by hope. However, it turns out
to be a night only of images that leaves me exhausted. For my own sake I
will need to relax. The land will show itself when it will. I must give
up and give in to the notion that I can do nothing about it.
first streaks of light on this morning reveal gray and black clouds at
both low and high levels. During the night I saw the Southern Cross near
the horizon and I know Hawai'i is near. My experience in seeing Crux
from places in Kaua'i, Maui, Kona, and South Point tells me that the
canoe is in the latitude of Hawai'i. The time for changing our course
from a general northwest direction to a more westerly one is near.
rows of low clouds show straight winds coming from NE 'Aina. Hokule'a
is heading NW Na Leo, crosswise to the wind. The rising sun
breaks that long dark line into individual puffs of cloud, orange in
color. High clouds are becoming more scattered now, showing as thin
streaks of red against a background of light blue sky. Straight winds
and clearing skies are a welcome sight after the last three days of
couple of hours before noon we see a thin, gray line beyond a bank of
clouds almost dead ahead. With the sun high in the sky and somewhat
behind us yet, and with rain clouds lifting, the line seems stationary.
It is not particularly distinct. What is it?
have a meeting of the crew to work out a strategy. We will make two
tacks, one at noon and another at sunset. We hope that by holding a
course as close as possible downwind we will be able to see for sure if
the line that we think we see is an island or not.
new tack puts us on a course of SW 'Aina; then I go to sleep for
about two hours. When I awake in mid-afternoon, I find we're looking
right into the glare of the sun reflecting on the water making the
sighting of land in that direction impossible. It also makes it hard to
judge the movement of clouds, an important clue in finding land. Clouds
over the sea move, but those around the mountains are stationary.
steering SW 'Aina after three weeks in NW Na Leo makes the
land move differently along the compass. Now the land is moving
northward at a speed dependent upon our overall direction and speed
during the time I was asleep.
these two conditions I feel a lack of confidence as to where the line I
thought I had seen in the morning really was. Maybe that line had been
only in my imagination. We're at the right latitude for Mauna Kea, and
now only one question remains: does it lie downwind or upwind, to the
west or to the east?
saw no birds this morning, no sign of manu ku. Seeing no birds at
all makes the direction of land even more uncertain. Have I been too
hasty in turning west to find the land? Could it still lie to the north
and my memorizing system be inaccurate? Worst of all, could it be that
we are too far to the west, downwind of our destination?
try steering in the direction of that line we had seen by pointing the
canoe almost straight downwind, SW 'Aina. We have a straight wind
from NE 'Aina and a dominant Hikina swell. Even then, we cannot
hold the course. Steering is just too difficult.
keep straining to see something like images of mountains or clouds that
don't move. It's hard to see anything in the glare of this hot afternoon
sun. Straining makes me sleepy. I know that. I also know that I'm likely
only to be fooling myself. I must be patient and let the mountain show
when it is ready.
plan we had worked out in the morning was to change our tack after
dinner so we would not get too far south. Instead, we begin tacking at
about 5 P.M. Our new heading is NW 'Aina, close to the direction
of the setting sun. We see no birds at all, making it all the more
difficult to know where we are relative to the island of Hawai'i.
sun is nearing the horizon and a peculiar image is forming. I don't know
why. The cloud bank turns a dark gray, almost black, like rain. Around
the cloud bank, though, is a consistent orange color. It's a strange
is different about that setting sun. It's something we haven't seen
before. So we alter our course slightly and head directly into the sun,
crew is silent. I think they have a feeling, too, that land lies just
below the sun. It is as if we're all standing on tip-toes waiting, and a
feeling comes over me that this is the way things are supposed to be.
remember a story I was told one time (how accurate I do not know) of the
people of ancient Polynesia. They had their family guardians, ku'ula,
that gave them prosperity. They were symbolized as figures shaped of
carved stone. Fishing families had their ku'ula that attracted
fish and gave them protection. The navigator of old, as the story goes,
was not like other men. He was separated from them-a man of the sea, not
of the land. So his ku'ula was not bound to the land but was the
land itself-the highest mountain, a mountain of power.
stand on the bow of Hokule'a watching the sun dropping
toward that cloud bank and I question how much control, if any, I have
in finding the land. This is the way things are supposed to be.
and closer it comes to the cloud, and I have a different, almost strange
feeling. The sun is right in the compass direction of 'Aina-land.
It is pointing out the land.
walk to the bow of the canoe for I know the island is there. I don't
know how I know. Steve Somsen also knows. Not that he really knows, but
he's picked up on my knowing it's there.
a particular cloud begins separating. It has the same quality as other
clouds in terms of whiteness. But this one is not traveling. It's
stationary, and it opens up to reveal a long, gentle slope with a slight
bump-a cinder cone on the side of Mauna Kea!
navigation at this moment seems to be out of my hands and beyond my
control. I'm the one given the opportunity of feeling the emotion of the
navigator not yet ready to have a complete understanding of what is
happening. It is a moment of self-perspective, of one person in a vast
ocean given an opportunity of looking through a window into my heritage.
hear the crew cheering as the edge of the sun begins disappearing behind
Mauna Kea. I feel their happiness, but a silence in me sets in. Venus
follows the sun and touches the mountain an hour later.
is now time to sleep, for there is nothing else to do. The sun has led
us to the land. Ahead of us is our ku'ula, and I'm filled with a
feeling of emptiness and gratitude.
before I sleep I check on Mau. He's already asleep--something unusual
for him at this time of night.