Tuesday, 18 August 2009

Lymington - Brittany

Starquest moored under the bows of Tickled Pink, apparently owned by a Jersey resident Russial oil mogul. As you can see from the picture both ships are about the same length!

Now, for reasons which defeat me I am unable to upload text from Word into this blog and having written 3,000 words it's kind of galling not to be able to share them. So, while I attempt to fathom out (nautical term note) why I can't copy and paste text from Word to here I'll give you a thumbnail sketch of life so far.

23rd. July
From Lymington, where we had the electronics tweaked we sailed to Poole and tied up at the Town Quay Marina. Very central but quite noisy with holidaymakers and a rather eccentric mix of 'events', including a classic car rally on the quay.

25th. July
From Poole to Weymouth in a gap in the weather. More uphill, upwind sailing - or to be more accurate motoring as the wind was on the nose. Bumpy slog but nice to be in Weymouth. The town is a classic seaside town- donkey rides on the beach, Punch and Judy man and more fish and chip shops than you can imagine possible in one place. Had two very enjoyable days with Mike and Annie Chaney - Mike was Editor of Today when I worked on the programme and it was good to see him again.

Weather in Weymouth was usual rain and high winds but we did see a gap coming...

4th. August
Moved from Weymouth to Portland, home of the sailing events for 2012 Olympics, all of a mile but being free of the Weymouth lifting brideg we were able to skip across the Channel whenever the opportunity arose. Winds gusting 36 knots when we entered Portland which made mooring an interesting venture. Read all about it in the long version if I ever manage to upload it.

7th. August
Left Portland at 5am and crossed the Channel. Not much wind, big swell so a motorboat trip for most of the time. Poor Jo felt quesy and spent most of the crossing below decks. Tied up in Alderney mid afternoon....knackered. Had nice meal, drinks and slept soundly despite very uncomfortable mooring in Braye Harbour.

8th. August
Left Braye at noon and very happy to leave the choppy harbour behind. Had good sail most of the way to Guernsey and managed to get tides right for Alderney departure (not too difficult given we were moored there) and arrival at Little Russel channel (not so easy but we did it).

Tied up in Guernsey St. Peter Port in prime location right in front of Marks and Sparks.

Met up with ex Hammersmith neighbours George and Caroline Freeman and son Charles. Had most enjoyable supper with them and they joined us on board for a return match..

12th. August
Left Guernsey for Jersey. Not much wind so donkey stirred into action again. Jersey was a pleasant surprise and better than I remember from last (GQT) visit. Met Joyce and Rob on Pink Cloud a stunning 60 foot Nijad. Also bumped into Kay and Chris with a 37 foot Prout, Halycon, which is just like Starquest but grown up.

17th. August
Left Jersey at low water, which meant leaving the marina for a pontoon outside the sill. Left pontoon at 10.30am and had a very enjoyable sail to Grandville. Caught two mackeral on the way which we have just cooked. Can't get fresher than that...and free.

The wind packed up a couple of hours from our destination but we managed to sail most of the way. Granville is a pleasant French town unsullied by hoards of holidaymakers. We love it.

So good to at last hit the French shore. Winds and weather have thwarted our efforts so far but now we are on our way. Next stop St. Malo via Mont St. Michael. Stay tuned.

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The Crew

The Crew
On board at Lymington