Thursday, 18 December 2014

Leaving Lanzarote

It's come the time.

We should be out of here in a few minutes. The water tanks are filling (with desalinated Lanzaroate water), Alex is checking the oil. We're stamped out, and paid up.

Enki is looking trim. Dinghy deflated and stowed on the foredeck, kayak strapped acrossways, behind the mast. We have a string bag full of citrus fruit, bags of dirty potatoes, green tomatoes, garlic, onions, enough goat's milk yoghurt to get me through the New Year and far too much chocolate (Christmas is the excuse). Our last minute purchases were instant noodles, cigarettes, vermouth and Pommery champagne. That about sums it up.

The weather looks OK for the next five or six days, good enough to get us south to the Cape Verdes which is where normally you would hope to pick up the trade winds. We'll revise our situation then, with the help of our pro weather service Commanders' Weather. If necessary, we'll stop over at the Cape Verdes - they're meant to be very chilled out. We'll keep going if the weather is good though.

We're just the two of us, and that is enough to give my mum the wobbles. She's right. It is a risky venture. But we have done everything we can to prepare ourselves and the boat well. Stuff happens, of course. We'll deal with whatever happens as sanely and safely as possible. We'll hope it's nothing as bad as running out of coffee pods.

This little clinker-built British boat sailed onto the dock yesterday and lowered its sails in winds gusting 25 knots. Two young people aboard. Presumably they'd come from Gibraltar, but maybe Morocco. Either way, they'd been out in the ocean. The boat has no engine, no cockpit, a spinnaker pole the diameter of a broom handle, a tiny anchor tied off at the stern, a wooden oar as long as the boat strapped onto the deck (for sculling in light winds, one presumes), and a wooden tiller rigged up for self-steering. At a guess, the boat is 22 feet long. It's towing an inflatable of maybe a third its length. You just can't imagine how huge Enki looks compared to this boat, and how comfortable and well-equipped. Who knows where they're headed, but I can imagine how worried their mothers are! I would be too, but you can bet that no-one was able to stop them. Going to sea is something certain people just have to do.

We'll keep the blog coming as often as possible via HF radio. Text only till we get to our next port.

Happy Christmas from the skipper and crew of Enki II!

No comments:

Post a Comment