Our summer holiday started this afternoon. We had planned to hop on our boat and sail away the minute our last working day was over, particularly as the wind forecast was showing pretty nice figures earlier this week. According to a couple of different sources there was going to be a brisk easterly wind of 15 to 20 knots. That would have pushed us nicely dead downdwind for a few days, and we could have made it pretty far west towards the Archipelago Sea on the south west corner of Finland, perhaps even as far as the Åland islands. Easterlies are quite rare in the summer in the Gulf of Finland, where the prevailing winds are southwesterlies, so it’s always good to take advantage of them if heading west.
Sometimes it’s easy to spot a perfect moment. Like this one – a small boat anchored in a calm bay, after a warm, sunny day and the first sail of the season. The air is full of beautiful smells of the sea and the pine forest, as the sun sets behind a campfire where a delicious dinner is cooking. And then a full moon rises over the little boat in the bay!
Maybe you’ve heard the saying about the right length of boat – that it should be the wife’s age in feet. I’m the wife in this story, but I was the one who chose our boat, and I laughed at this rule and decided to ignore such stupid nonsense.
Spring is late this year. Really, really late. Not a bud in a tree, not a green blade of grass.
We’re back from the beautiful shores of the Atlantic Ocean. It’s officially spring – never mind the snow that stubbornly keeps falling and the freezing northerly wind that blows your hat off and makes your limbs stiff. It’s spring, and like I said in my last post, time to get our hands dirty. And dirty they are!
We have spent a few beautiful days by the Ocean. The Atlantic. It’s not tropical or warm where we are – it’s still winter in most of Europe, and the Atlantic coast of Portugal is no exception. But it’s a lot warmer than back home, and the water… well, it’s a totally different colour!
I was recently talking to a person involved in research on boating and boat maintenance. We discussed the usual boat stuff that one does every spring – or otherwise on a regular basis – like bottom paint jobs and engine maintenance, but also about bigger projects like the ones we are currently planning: upgrades for sails, rigging, and the sanitation system. One of the questions I was asked was how much of it we are going to do ourselves, and what are the sort of things we would have a boatyard do for us.
So you want to go sailing?