Friday, September 28, 2007

Hello readers everywhere

In the past few days I've spoken to three or four people who all tell me they regularly read the blog. When I'm writing, the audience I have in mind is probably my parents (which may be why this blog is a bit different from many others out there). But it's lovely to know that other people look at it too - thank you!

I wish I could delight you all with pictures or descriptions of warm blue seas. Sadly not. It was 22deg in Barcelona yesterday but here in Suffolk it is cold, wet and rather windy.

I've been reading one of my acquisitions from the Southampton boat show, Nick Ward's Left for Dead. (Putting in the Amazon link shows me it already has an astonishing eight reviews). Nick was the last person to be rescued from the 1979 Fastnet disaster in which 15 people died. Only now has he felt able to write about it. He describes a Force 8 as a "bit of a headache" and a Force 10 as a "full-blown migraine". He's quite cool about 20ft waves but gets nervous when they increase from 35 to 40ft in the space of 15 minutes. Hmmm. I think I have forgotten what real sailing is like. I met Nick at the show and he told me he went straight back to sailing, and racing, as soon as he could - I guess it would either be that or never sailing again.

At some point next year we have to get Kalessin from Barcelona to Sete, where we can get into the canals. I need to work out if we can get away without a pilot book for Mediterranean France - it may only be a couple of stops, hardly worth a £35 investment. [Slightly later] I have just found the Waterways maps buried under a pile of post. Barcelona to Sete along the coast is about 150km, of which about half is in Spain. So maybe we can get away without. We met people sailing in Mallorca without a pilot book who seemed to get on fine...

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