During the next watch change, we spotted a white light ahead, about a mile away. We guessed it must be a fishing boat, so we both stayed on deck to monitor it. As we drew nearer and continued to see only one white light, we speculated that it might be a trawler or other powered vessel. Finally, we spotted a red light, as the vessel appeared to turn directly toward us. We were very surprised to see a crane on a small dredging barge as we passed.
Casey went below to catch a few hours of sleep while I grabbed a couple of cookies and some coffee to keep me awake. About an hour later, the wind shifted from aft to ahead, and the velocity increased slightly. The tide began flowing northward. When the windvane lost steerage, I took the wheel. It failed to respond, so I woke Casey, thinking that the steering cable was faulty. But it turned out that the boat had stopped because of a change in wind and tide. We turned on the engine, regained steerageway, and continued to motorsail in 28 knots for the last few hours of our trip.