At last the Spring is here. Just like that, from one day to another. All of a sudden the marina is so crowded with people who are busy preparing their boats for the upcoming season.
We are definitely busy ourselves too. The 'to do' -list is pretty long and at the same pace as we are checking it, new projects are coming up.
Isabelle is really skilled at 'detailing' as she prefer to call it. With the patience of an angel she is sanding, cleaning and brushing all the teak trim on deck and then she gives it three coats with her preferred teak treatment. 'Cetol' which is something in between teak-oil and varnish. A big job now but it will save us a lot of work later. Looks good too.
we did send the anchor and the chain to be regalvanized. It came back just as good as new. Very nice, isn' t it?
Our neighbour during the winter, Marc on his aluminum boat 'Vo Lu Mondu' (that he bought as a bare hull and finsihed off himself) is eager to sail north in the Baltic Sea this summer... but I wonder if it wouldn't be better to leave the dock first?
Anyway, he persists in claiming that he will leave April 15, so he's having a fare-well party onboard his boat April 13. All parties are most appreciated, but farewell parties are not quite my favorites... we will actually miss him, always with a smile and a joke when we meet on the wharf.
Good luck and Fair winds to you mate! I did that trip in 2007 and it's just superb. The warmer seas and the dolphins are calling for Isabelle and myself now, though...
This joint had to be fixed on our Aries vane. The boltholes had gone oval over the years resulting in the whole structure moving in a not desired manner. The cure for this was to drill those holes to a larger size and then insert sleeves made of 10 mm hose for hydraulics. After a few hours of tinkering - and a few more of thinking and planning - the result was satisfactory. The joint is very solid now. I also cleaned adn lubricated the moving parts of the vane so it is ready for those lonely long watches it usually takes with no complaints or even demanding food or coffee.
Everybody, once we tell them we are living on the boat now during the nordic winter, keeps asking us the same question:
-'Isn't that very cold?'
So, here's the answer. - No it's not. It is, obviously, a bit cramped compared to living in a house, but also very nice and close to the elements.
OK, on this picture you can see our means of keeping the cabin warm and dry. A diesel heater that provides us with up to 4 kW using 2-4 liters of diesel per day.
We never yet had to run it on more than low flame, so we could probably have a nice micro-climate inside the boat even on Greenland at winter.
As a matter of fact, we did for a while play with the idea of sailing the old Viking route. Iceland-Greenland- Nova Scotia/Labrador and then southward along the US East Coast.
However, after spending two months mostly 'captured' inside the cabin, we definetely agree on going to the warm and nice parts of the planet instead...at least on e more winter just 'sitting' in the icy, snowy environment isn't THAT appealing at this point.
So here's the latest (beta-)version of our planned route, or at least the first stages of it...
Falsterbo to Thyboröen(Denmark) via Anholt Island, and then to Shetland Islands from there and with a really favorable weather window we might do the 170 miles trip from Shetland to Färöyar. Later to Scotland; Ireland, Brittany, Galicia (Spain) Portugal and Madeira and the Canary Islands. (Where hopefully our families can join us for a week or two)
Here we'll will need to make a choice between two alternatives. Either to Senegal and then Brazil, or to Cap Verde and then the Caribbean. We'll see....
As a matter of fact, we don't want to plan ahead more than absolutely necessary, since for us, a great part of the fun is to voyage with an open mind to whatever occurs 'en route'.
More to come, but first the boat has to come on the hard for a paintjob and some installations and preparations...