Tuesday, 25 November 2014


The morning after the Atlantic Odessey set off for the Caribbean, we  flew to London. So counter-intuitive. The traffic coming into Arrecife airport in November is almost all from northern European cities - Oslo, London, Moscow, Glasgow. Not hard to understood why. Gatwick airport at 4 pm - dark, wet, cold. But we hadn't come to London for the weather, had we? Nothing we were looking forward to needed a swimsuit or a pair of tanned legs to enjoy.

But before I get stuck into tales of the city (and, more to the point, sort through Alex's hundreds of photos), here are a few snaps of the rally in departure mode - we may never be flies on such a wall again.

Remind me, whose idea was this?

One of the HRs on our shopping list in 2011 turned up in Lanzarote.
She was called Lily back then, now goes by the name of Strangetrader

Australians Andrea and Rob (right) own Strangetrader - we enjoyed their company
They breed 'em tough in Norway

The climax of the week of Cornell-led preparations was a liferaft demo and a simulated helicopter rescue in the sheltered waters of the port.  Superimpose a 3 metre ocean swell on this scenario, add strong wind (in addition to the down draught of the helicopter), factor in large quantities of fatigue, distress and perhaps serious injury - and make a note to yourself. Stay out of trouble. The family will thank you for it.

Orange is for emergencies - smoke flare and liferaft (below)

Gather round people, and look at this stuff you never want to have to use

Jimmy Cornell (left) and the handsome boys from marine rescue

Circling the target

Man coming down the line - follow his instructions

Hauling up the cage - it fits two

It'll go like a shower of shit, says Alex - seems kinda open though

Team Sweden - all young and buff
The hoteliers from La Rochelle who are fleeing a sinking France
Off home
Jimmy meets the press

His camera is attached to a drone 'copter above the departing fleet.

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