Monday, August 28, 2006

Baia to Recife

Nothing venture nothing gain. I have always been very negative on solo sailing, but had no options than to sail from Salvador to Recife single handed. After saying my goodbye's to the friendly people of Salvador and a last visit with friends to Pelourinho, I set sail on Wednesday morning and slipped the dock at 6. On rounding Barra lighthouse, the wind was blowing a force 6 and the waves were huge. Springtime, a South African yacht decided to return to the harbour and try the next day. I sailed out to 25 miles from the coast and set a course for Recife. Colin on his yacht Polly did the same and we kept in sight till nightfall
Mila went like a train on tracks and achieved speeds of 10 knots at times. My first night was scary, as this my first solo night. I kept the radar on, saw a few ships and slept very little. The next morning it was the ocean and me with no one in sight. It was perfect sailing conditions with the wind at 18 knots on the beam and I achieved the best run for 24 hours, a whopping 181 miles. Saturday morning at six I arrived in Recife and anchored off the Pernambuco Yacht Club. As the tide was low and a tricky passage up the river to Cabanga I had to wait till 5 in the afternoon. Colin arrived at 4.30 and we were fortunate to have a local yacht showing us the way to the Cabanga Yach Club. I moored and had a good sleep.
The next morning, Springtime with Thomas his wife Johness, daughter Dom and her friend Alex joined us in the marina. Amigo a German yacht with Martin, his wife Ines and 5 year old daughter Anna also came from Salvador and Martin decided to enter for the regatta to Fernando. We celebrated our arrival with a nice chicken braai Sunday evening next to the pool. The facilities at the Cabanga Yacht Club are outstanding. There are two swimming pools, one with a water slide, saunas and beautiful braai areas. The food is good in the restaurant and not expensive. The staff are friendly and helpful, and I am looking forward to a happy stay.
On my next update I will give you more information on Recife. We moored in the marina till the start of the regatta to Fernando on the 24th of September.
That's all for now

Tuesday, August 08, 2006

More news from the Island of Itaparika

The sad part about sailing is that you make so many friends on yachts, and then one day they leave.
Francois on Pytheas 111 left for France.
The last email that I received from him was from Ponta Delgada and he was going to sail to Gibraltar within the next few days. Yan and Eve left for Trinidad and so has Guido and Patricia.
I have been sailing in the rivers and to the islands.
It is winter in Salvador so its rain and rain and rain.
We have had constant rain here for two weeks, with no blue sky.
Fortunately the weather seems to change now and winter is slowly but surely coming to an end. The days are warming with more and more sun.
I was in Itaparica for some time and Larry on Freedom came to join me there before he set off to Trinidad.
I received an email from him and he is doing well.
Just left Recife for Fortaleza.

Mila is entered for the yearly rally from Recife to Fernando de Noronha.
My son Hennie and his wife is joining me, so I am looking forward to this event.
They are expecting about 80 yachts to participate.
This is a yearly event and very popular with the sailing community.
The Cabanga Yacht Club have ask me to represent South Africa at a flag raising on the 21st of September.
The rally starts on the 26th of September.
Mila is at present in the marina at Cenab and I have to do some maintenance on her.
I will sail for Recife the last week of September if the weather permits.
Milo the boat cat is doing well.
I am going to tie a paint brush to his tail and see if he can help me with the varnishing.
That's all for now
Until later