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Date: 24 Jul 2009 01:36:26
Title: A Lady trip

23/07/09   crew... stephen and aileen hyde, pat and ann lyons.
Greetings again from the lovely A Lady, presently at anchor  beside a beautifull little island called " villa franca" on the south coast of san migel.
since our last blog we have covered the following places:-
 
Sat.18th july..     we all went on an organised bus tour of the
eastern end of the island, which included old villages, beeches,and in particular , the now extinct volcano's.
these were facinating,  very lush , green, lots of trees and of course bubbling mud and sulfer springs. the local restaurant's cooked special dishes in the sulpher springs.
we skipped that bit, sulpher,, yuk yuk
 
we had a very long lunch and then visited europe's largest botanical garden, ( We still think fota is brilliant) when we finished there we passed the islands only tea plantation and factory, but we still had our ' barry's tea' when we got back to the boat.
 
sat night , we went to the ' the white horse ' restaurant in santa barbara on the north west coast, again the hospitality was outstanding, ( just like ireland 50 years ago) Grab this,  as we passed the village houses, the old ladies standing in the doors waved to us, passing tourists,
 
the final laugh was our bus driver decided to race the other bus on the way back to the marina, he took off over the mountain at 100 miles an hour, the road was hardly the width of the bus ,and the villages became irrelevant, on and on we went at breakneck speed, everyone on board 'shitting bricks', but he got us home first and in one piece.  it was of course a good excuse for lots more pints in the marina bar.  all in all , a very good day.
 
19th july sunday. we went ashore for breckfast and then did mass,this is always interesting when no one understands the language. we( stephen,aileen dermod, pat and ann) hired taxi's to do a tour of the lake district to the west of the island. oh! my god , orgasmic,we were so impressed, never saw anything like it before. ( but killarney still looks good)
Again the hospitality 0f everyone, including the taxi drivers was such a plesent surprise,
We got back to the boat about 4pm . stephen cooked corned beef and cabbage. Dermod lovett's favourate, however the corned beef was tough, I will have to have some words with durcan about this at another time.,
a couple of pints ashore to wash down the food and wine and then off to the scratcher..zzzzzzzzzzzzz
 
Monday 20th july.. crew  S and A Hyde, Dermod lovett, Pat and Ann lyons
We got up early, had early breckfast and took the boat around to the fuelling berth, Stephen had to check out of the Island with the authorities as we were sailing to Santa Maria, an ajoining island just 50 miles to the south.
the check out took 3 hours.most annoying. when the boat was fuelled up , and all the paperwork complete, we left ponto delgada in 22 knots sw breeze. we averaged 9knots for the passage, when we arrived, the roast belly of pork and crispy crackling was just about ready for eating, along with the roast spuds, apple sauce,  carrots. and creamed potatoes,  yum yum.
A few pints ashore with the other fellow I.C.C. travellers and off to bed again...zzzzzzzzzzz
by the way, we all have plenty of nap's during hese passages
 
Tuesday 21st july. crew S and A hyde, Dermod Lovett, Pat and Ann Lyons
 
no mad rush out of bed,we were on the new marina, a super facility, costing nearly 10 m euros, amazing when the Island has a population of just 6000 inhabitants.
we spent the morning tending the boat, and dolled up to go for lunch in the local yacht club, all food and drink was hosted by the island, and again the hospitality was outstanding,
 
 the food consisted of grilled sardines , salad and lots of other local dishes,
they also put on a spectactular show of girl drummers. this brought the house down, the old fellows thought they were going to get a free meal of young mermaids for the afternoon, but were dissapointed when this did not happen.
 
That evening we were invited to a drinks party on ' Pure Magic ' an AMEL super maramu 2000 (54feet) the owners
Peter and Beverly killen were great hosts, later we retired to the yacht club again for more music and feckin drink,
 We cant remember going to bed, zzzzzzzzzz 
 
Wednesday 22nd july
Dermod got a flight from santa maria back to san migel, his son (of the same name) is getting married in the U.S. so he had to go home . we will miss him, and in particular his special wine talents.     At 09.00 hrs we set off on a bus tour of the island,this island is totally different to san migel, much more barren, but has beautifull beaches, vineries, waterfalls, etc.
it used to be an american airforce base for many years, and prospered during that period, but alas, things move on , (as we know ourselves) the yanks moved out and now they are very ,very ,poor
 
 we also visited the site where Christopher Columbus got ship wrecked. ( presume the island was named after his ship, 'santa maria' )
 
we arrived back to the yacht club again at 14.00 hrs for another free lunch, this time all meat, we had a display of all the islands historical clothing and culture,
 
A Lady hosted a drinks party on board the boat at 19.00 hrs for all the I.C.C. and R.C.C. boats that travelled to santa maria, all in all about 40 guests managed to squeeze onto the boat. a great success. yes of course we all had to go back to the yacht club for more feckin drink afterwards. fats mc clement was on fire with the jokes.
brilliant, well done donal.
 
Thursday 23rd july......Crew S and A hyde, pat and Ann lyons
Breckfast at 09.00 hrs,  cleaned up the boat after the party, stowed away all the bits and made ready for departure back to san migel, this time to' villa franca'
The wind was nw 15/16 knts and we sailed along at an average 7.5 knots ,close on the wind. we all got a great colour, (red) and saw lots of dolphins, dissapointed we have not seen any whales yet. we anchored at villa franca at 19.00 hrs alongside another irish boat( not with our crowd) but from galway.
we tucked into a beautifull spiced beef dinner, cooked by yours truley ,stephen,( This time Durcan got the meat right)
 
Then lots of time had to be devoted to up dating the blog.
and with a bit of luck, in a few minutes , yep. zzzzzzzzzz

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