07 November 2015
Haven't managed to update our blog for a while, mainly as we haven't been anywhere outside of Las Palmas and also we have been too busy having a good time, meeting new people and getting the boat ready for the big ocean voyage.
It is currently Saturday 7th November, the day before departing for the 800 nautical mile trip to Cape Verdes.
A run down of our last month. Odyssey was lifted back into the water on Friday 9th October after a long wait for the lift to get around to us and in true Spanish style, waited all morning, siesta happened and then by the time we were back in the pontoon it was 6pm. It was nice to be back on the boat after staying in an apartment, listening to the snap crackle and popping of the fish underneath us and waking up with a red wine hangover. It is hot the next day so all we manage to do is walk all the way round to the marina office to pay our bill via a cafe for coffee and carrot cake. We spend the rest of the day googling and ringing up what seems to be all the bars in Las Palmas trying to find somewhere to watch the Wales v Australia RWC game to no avail so are reduced to listening to it on the iPhone ap via the sailors bar wifi on Paul's phone. Seems that the Spanish are just not that bothered about the rugby.
Thursday 15th October saw quite a blowy day, forecast of up to 40knots and all the boats in the anchorage next door are rolling back and forth. A long walk to the other side of the island to scope out pubs that will show the rugby.
Sunday 18th October: a disastrous weekend for rugby. Wales are out so we have a few drinks with Paul and stumble upon a traditional Canarian parade of floats, free beer, music and processions of cattle. A hangover ensues the next morning, making getting back to the pub at 12:30 in time for the Irish game difficult.
Thursday 22nd October:
We now have Graham joining us as crew across to St Lucia. He came out for a few days from Glasgow, but unfortunately it rained every day that he was here so we didn't actually get much sailing in other than a couple hours, which we spent testing out the spare genoa sail, the new salt water pump, gave the engine a good run to make sure it is all good after having the shaft seal replaced in the boat yard and testing all 3 reefs.
Friday 23rd October:
An awkward night sleep as the swell was coming in so all the ropes holding us in place on the pontoon were squeeking away against the fair leads keeping us awake. Wednesday night was spent demolishing a case of beer between us, the Dutch couple opposite and a Norwegian guy from up the pontoon. Thursday night means drinks aboard Alexandra as the owners Lars and Maria are back from home, where we sample their gameldansk and 60% gin.
Sunday 25th October:
Clocks go back and we get up at 7:30am in time to wave in and welcome Magic into the marina, who we have been tracking their progress leaving Madeira.
Had a productive couple of days. We (Liam) changed the oil filters, cleaned out the diesel tanks, took down the spare Genoa and put up the main one, cleaned out the furling mechanisms of both fore stays so they are both spinning smoothly and also invested in some cockroach powder and traps after spotting one running across the deck.
Tuesday 27th October:
A busy day with slight red wine hangover after enjoying drinks aboard Magic again.
After hanging out our washing, we help in a few boats from Jimmy Cornell's Islands Odyssey rally. Mr Cornell himself a then strolls down our pontoon so we make polite chat.
We now have a group of British guys delivering a racing yacht one side of us and a great big French catamaran the other side and a Halberg Rassey 42 on the other side of the pontoon. We see a familiar face, Heather who we met in Oerios, this time with her husband Tony, also taking part in the Island Odyssey, who unfortunately have some engine troubles meaning they have to stay behind and wait for a spare part.
We have topped up our fuel tanks and fuel cans with another 300 litres of diesel.
Had a great Irish coffee pontoon party for Cruising Association members, ARC participants, Island Odyssey participants, and fellow pontooners and some other locals we have met. A steady flow of people until 2:30am, but thankfully we had over estimated on the Jameson's whiskey, coffee and cream. Thanks Alexandra for flying your flags. No one noticed that the 'Irish' bunting we thought was Irish in the shop turned out to be Italian.
A few days later, we manage to organise a mass trip to the Irish bar to watch the Australia v New Zealand final and even get a shout out on the Arc fleet radio. It's a good turn out as about 50 sailors that turn up. The Kiwi/British crew of Lufi are glad that the weather was bad so they could stay and watch the rugby.
A night out in the old town with Mark, Tina and May, worlds away from the new city. Lovely tapas, wandering little lanes and bars, although the two that they wanted to show us were both shut being bank holiday Monday. This followed an evening on board another Halberg Rassey who we met at our Irish coffee evening, who ended up making us dinner which was needed with the wine and port.
Thursday 5th November:
T-3 days till departure, which on the one hand will mean a respite from all the drinking, but on the other hand will mean waving goodbye to some of our friends not on the ARC+ rally, especially Maria and Lars of Alexandra opposite and Tina, Mark and May, and their wine cellar, on Magic and also Paul of Pisces who we have shared a good number of beers with.
So we're almost ready. We are currently topping up water tanks, we have our frozen meats, just waiting on a veg delivery and been to the skipper's briefing so we know where the start and finish lines of the rally are.
Follow our location progress through the World Cruising Club website. Look for ARC+ rally tracking, boat number 359, Odyssey.
See you on the flip side.
Much love, Liz, Liam and cabin boy Graham