Departure for France took place on the 19th May and what a slow, monotonous sail it was! Seas flat calm upon departure, was the name of the game of that first week.
The winds wouldn’t play and light as they were insisted on pushing us ever westward. With a tight time line, Big Bertha was a constant ticking over in the background to assist us with maintaining speed. At one stage, we even considered having to make landfall in Bermuda: not a happy thought since the reason we had refrained from this particular route were the large unpredictable storms, shallower waters and currents.
At long last, a week after departing Guadeloupe the wind finally rescued from this course of action as a direction shift took place, thereby enabling us to make the turn eastward.
After an epic 21 day sail that included squalls beyond belief, two lows passing through, winds on the nose, and no wind at all we finally arrived in Flores – yes a detour for refueling and a few days of much needed break.
Highlights were the treats of seeing a pod of Atlantic White Sided Dolphin and a much smaller breed that gained great joy from leaping and spinning through the air – not sure what species they were (http://www.nmfs.noaa.gov/pr/species/mammals/cetaceans/whitesideddolphin_atlantic.htm).
Floreswas beautiful: verdant green mountains, black volcanic rock, waterfalls by the hundreds and small hamlets are situated amongst terraced hillsides.
With strong winds and 2 metre swells making entering the island’s marina an unsafe maneouvre the first night found us anchoring in the protected Baia de Faja Grande situated on the western side. With the afternoon sunlight setting the rain drenched scenery a sparkling, it was a magnificent sight.