- So we left Nazare and headed out from the millpond marina past some sizeable waves and out to sea!!!! We had a north east wind blowing 14 knots and headed on a course for the canaries.
- Within the first few hours we had seen the biggest pod of bottlenose dolphins which surrounded the boat and stayed with us for ages. Shortly afterwards we were followed by some whales (mr ft not sure definitely but think they were pilot whales) they were just a couple of metres from the back of the boat chasing us it was immense. No pics though as we were all just holding on for dear life at this point. We then sailed through a shipping lane which was very exciting!!!!
- THEN it all took a turn, the rolling got to Isla and the puking started.
- Heath quickly followed and for the next couple of days a lot of buckets were filled, emptied and filled again!
- Roy and James shared the night watches whilst I got to be in charge of sea sickness. On the third day we tried some sea sickness tablets and within 20 minutes I had both my kids back, it was a beautiful day and we put some tunes on loud and walked around in a bucket of laundry. Later though it got very dark and much windier, for the first time I was a little terrified and spent the night huddled to James in the cockpit. The nights are very long out here with the sun setting around 6 and not coming up till after 7, I definitely prefer sailing in the day and get quite anxious at night, the children are in bed and fast asleep by 7 and haven’t been scared at all. The night passed and Jim was chilled throughout ( he called it an awkward sea as some rogue waves kept sneaking up on us from the side when they were meant to be behind us) I personally aged a hundred years but the sun came up and we were still going.
- The wind and sea were the same but in the sunshine the mountains were definitely smaller. We did 160 nautical miles on this day and sailed mine nad the kids fasted speed of 11 knots. I needed a moment and so we swung a right and had a very brief pit stop in Isla de Porto de Santo (Madeira) it was nice to see a bit of land and it looked incredible with a lot of the island being a nature reserve.
- That night around 10 I woke with absolutely no idea were I was and spent a terrifying few minutes relocating myself…..this then caused a second wave of horror, as when you think to deeply about where you are and what you’re doing it can cause you to freak out a little. A tiny little boat in a massive ocean, no one around…. what happens if it goes wrong? I had to go and sit with Jim in the cockpit and calm, and you can because it’s beautiful up there, millions of stars and just the sea rushing past, the boat skips across the surface and each day we are nearer to where we are going.
- Day 5 at sea and Jim and Roy got to lie in, the kids and I doing watch from 6-11, we saw our second pod of dolphins, much smaller in size than the last lot and a lighter grey with speckles, Isla thought they were very cute! We caught a bonito tuna in the afternoon but put him back as he was too small and then Roy and I got to navigate some massive ships at around 2 in the morning.
- At 6 in the morning James and I could see land, we had arrived in Lanzarote, we sailed round the bottom of the island catching another bonito tuna this one big enough to feed the five of us and then anchored up in a beautiful cove. Immediately Jim and Heath had dived in and within minutes we were all in bobbing around (Roy’s dive was definitely best). We cooked tuna for lunch, swam and relaxed, we had done the first leg. The children were in stitches when it turned out to be a NAKED PERSON beach!!! We finished the day sailing up to Arrecife where Jim then parked the boat in a small spot amidst very expensive boats, also with a crowd watching from the marina!! He did very well, we then ran to Burger King which was meters from the boat and ate the biggest burgers possible, until the meat sweats kicked in and we had to all go and lie down. 12 hours of sleep later and relax, we are here for a week where we hope to crack the job list, wave Roy off and welcome Tony. Hope you are all, all good Fran x