Waiting, jobs, waiting, more jobs, more waiting!
Although Double Waters was ready to go and the crew were anxious to head further South, the weather remained unfavourable. Unusually for this time of year there was day after day of Southerly winds with a big swell from the South, not the ideal conditions for a 500+ mile passage South to the Canaries. We had much discussion over these days as to when to leave, but always came to the conclusion that ‘’we don’t want to punish ourselves, and that we should be patient’’
We were patient and waited. In fact our decision was borne out by us seeing 2 other yachts leave Vilamoura to head South, one returned 4 days later having managed only 200 miles South, the other blowing out their mainsail and damaging the boats steering!
Tourists complained about the cool conditions, carried raincoats, and the only people on the beach were the Coileys enjoying the surf! For 2 days we hired a car and travelled inland to explore, finding the dry and rugged hills of the Algarve region, many ‘cork’ trees, Roman hill forts, and a Buddhist temple! And every day we watched the weather forecast.
Boat life continued. By now we are into the daily routines and Double Waters really feels like home. There is a never ending list of maintenance, repair, and improvement jobs. And these we all get stuck into. During our enforced wait in Vilamoura Bridget replaced all the curtains with brightly coloured fabric, George developed his rain catcher devices, Jack and I serviced and sorted out an oil leak on the generator, and Jed made delicious chocolate cakes. Additional things include; CD/radio in saloon, safety bar across the stove, canvas boots for base of forestays, 100litres of extra emergency water, new hose reel, safety bar in cockpit…….the list goes on.
UnBirthdays have also featured on board Double Waters over the past couple of months, it seemed we needed a few celebrations, and so various homemade gifts have been prepared for each UnBirthday as they have come round. Come November we have a round of real Birthdays including Jeds’ 10th and Jacks’ 13th.
Finally, at the end of October, the low pressure systems marching up the Atlantic seemed to be easing, some settled weather was forecast, and we slipped our moorings and headed out to sea.