How long will the progress indicator spin before safe mode progress bar shows up?

How long will the progress indicator spin before safe mode progress bar shows up?

Not a good sign,  your HD is failing or has serious block problems. It might be possible to reformate the drive and start over.
or something more agressive to do the repair, like Disk Warrior http://www.alsoft.com/diskwarrior/
You need a backup plan in place here.
more information here in a similiar thread:
https://discussions.apple.com/message/17623074#17623074

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