I knew we were pounding something and hoped it wasnt the sharp edge of a container. In the seconds it took to race up the companionway, my minds eye flashed to where we store our hole-repair materials, underwater epoxies, and abandon-ship bags. I hoped to need none of them. Bernadette told me later shed thought wed glanced off an unlit ship, and she immediately jumped to her feet, unlocked the autopilot, grabbed our most powerful light, and looked to see if there was a black wall above us. No ship, but in the lights beam, under our bow, we saw that wed T-boned the trunk of a great tree, complete with a massive root system; in the swell, over and over, we continued to sail and crash against it. Stuck on that perch, Ithaka first turned broadside to the wind, then swiveled some more and became backwinded.