So we had always planned to spend at least 3 nights in Falmouth as this is where we had wanted to reach on our previous boat holiday that was cut short. We had one gloriously hot day and the others horrendous rain for the whole day. We did manage to get out on the bikes finally to do a food shop, and we meet some of Holly’s former colleagues for a pint, who were working at the dockyard …… well it turned into 5 pints & we missed tea so were FORCED to get a Dominos (other pizza deliveries are available…unless Dominos want to sponsor us of course!). They were worth their weight in gold as they gave us some good pointers for fixing the HF radio & fitting the wind turbine and battery wiring……sometimes it is who you know. We also have taken up cock fighting in the form of setting scrumpy on crabs in vicious gladiatorial fights to the death (no animals were harmed I promise) see the youtube channel for the footage. Mean while Holly was devouring crabs that were bigger than her pea head & wallet!. After a week of eating on the boat healthily and working to our budget, a few too many pints (as above) and glutenous stomachs set us back to a final Chinese take away on Sunday for a ‘Last Supper’….I think its time we were leaving this god forsaken country.
Falmouth, UK – L’Aber wrac’h, France (97 Miles / 18.5 Hours)
So as we prepared to set sail across to France, we were both feeling a bit apprehensive. It wasn’t that we thought we weren’t capable, but it will have been our longest passage by almost double, our first night passage, sleeping and taking shifts whilst sailing. On top of that we were entering a foreign port with limited French (I mean no French) and smuggling a small hairy boat dog with us, who had refused to s*%t prior to departing (we knew he would regret it).
So 8:30pm came we slipped the lines and off we went, leaving behind the sunset and setting sail on a beautifully calm sea. Once we left we felt more excited than nervous, thinking about the next part of our adventure.
Darkness slowly set upon us and the sea picked up slightly the further away from the headland. Unfortunately there was virtually no wind… so we had no choice but to listen to the dull humming tones of the engine! Simon did most of the work, with the aid of the auto pilot which meant we could focus on looking out for any other yachts & more to the point giant container ships…. as the channel is one of the busiest shipping lanes in the world! I sneaked off to bed at 11:30pm until 2.30am but couldn’t sleep at all, meanwhile Simon was:…….
So while Holly tried to get some shut eye it remained a peaceful evening and the urge to doze off was becoming to much, so alarms were set for every 15 minutes to ensure I stayed awake, that was until i began seeing 100’s of strange glows darting out from the side of the boat, turns out these were fish, and there ended up being thousands of them, every time the boat bounced down onto the water, they would all scatters as if they were scared off. As I started to drift off again 3 of our trusty dolphin friends arrived, and for the next 30 minutes watched them play and pick off all the fish, it was surreal…..actually I was shattered so maybe none of this was real at all??? We will never know. Holly came out at 2:30 and we sat up together until about 3 when I went to sleep for 2 hours. At 5am I woke up and relieved Holly and she popped off to bed with Scrumpy. The sun began to rise and it was amazing, I’m looking forward to watching many more with no sight of land, its a strange feeling. Holly woke again at 8.30 and sent me off to bed……..
So second time around I slept like log, when I woke I had to force myself up as I felt bad that Simon had done a long stint (5am to 08:30). He looked half asleep & absolutely out of it but still wanted to stay up with me, I gave him his orders & off he went to the cabin where he had some peculiar sleeping positions. I enjoyed a good few hours of absolute nothingness, just me surrounded by miles of grey water. Its so strange as your mind is emptied of everything other than this vast ocean (no day to day worries about shopping, money etc) but yet you feel like your thinking about so much ….. the only way I can describe it is ‘much to do about nothing’. I filled in some of my diary & wrote a random poem, made a cuppa and then Simon arose to join me again. The wind picked up so we enjoyed the last few hours with the sails up going faster than the engine had carried us through the night.
Then it started raining and we got a bit wet & cold …..and finally after 18 & half hrs we arrived. Relieved that Scrumpy could do his business, the harbour master spoke English & we could get a nice hot shower. We have been snuggled up in bed since 8pm for a well deserved early night!
Sorry for the essay… photos to follow when we have enough WIFI … first world problems!