Sailing around the World ( Departure day from Mauritius to Reunion Island )

A Lady
Stephen Hyde
Sun 24 Oct 2010 04:33
SATURDAY   23rd  OCTOBER  2010
Mauritius to Reunion Island  ......................   132miles
06.00hrs  Aileen went to Mass, to pray for a good passage,
07.00hrs, Skipper and Terry tackled the Lazarette and reorganised the whole thing.  this included the use of lots of shock cord to keep everything in
place when sailing, particularly in rough weather.  This all took about 2 hours, and we were happy we did a good job.
09.30 hrs  We all toddled over to the outer pier for the Blessing of the boats,  This was most interesting in so far that the Mian celebrent
was a catholic Priest ( an uncle of Philippe ) and the ceremony included , Muslim, Hindu, chineese, Anglican, and a jewish rabbi.
and each one got a short time for their own speach   .   well controled by the priest.
Every one attended the ceremony and it was almost entertaining,
Later, Philippe, Ingrid, and their daughter Alice called to " A Lady" to wish us   Bon Voyage...
Shortly after we left the dock and headed out the harbour towards the starting area,  there was a stiff breeze blowing.
11.30 hrs  We crossed the start line with all the other boats , a full fleet with the exception of Kalliope  who left 2 days ago.
The wind was stiff and blowing from the east.
We all headed out west before setting a course of 251 degrees T . and putting up the blue " bag of fear "
the wind eased off and for 10 miles we just had 10 / 12 knots of wind,
Suddenly the wind did a 180 degree shift and we found ourselves with the spinniker wrapped around the mast,  ohh my god, not again,......
all hands on deck and very quickly, we had the "bag of fear" down on the deck and into its bag.As we were one of the lead boats, we were surprised no one else noticed and they all suffered the same problem , Especially " Tucanon " who were fairly close to us at the time with their Parasail flying.
30 minutes later, the wind settled down and filled in from the south, 30 / 35 knots , so we had some great sailing with flat enough sea's
as the day wore on, the wind went more into the east and we finished up on a broad reach, scooting along at 9 to 10 knots,
We had " Wild Tigres " as company for much of the trip and eventually she overtook " A Lady " when we were about 60 miles from our destination.
However, " Wild Tigres " is 72 feet long, where as " A Lady is a mere 56 feet .
We had Lasagne for dinner with green peas, easy to prepare and cook , we all enjoyed the food and no alcohol again.
A full moon appeared above the horizon in the east and lit up the whole sea like daylight , and remained with us for the night.
It was a beautifull night for sailing and we all  enjoyed the bright scene and twinkling stars in the sky above.
00.00hrs,  Reunion Island appeared on the horizon, all lit up like a christmas tree, and we were still flaking along merrily.
We could see a few other yachts around us , and we were able to identify most of them,
As we got closer to the Island, it was obvious that it was a steep Island and soon we could see clearly the cliffs, the street lights, and all the residential lights climbing up the hills,  a great sight and always impresses the Skipper. Night landfalls are a truely great sight........well the ones that are lit up ;
It reminds Skipper of passing Cobh in the boat at night .....
03.00hrs. we passed along the northern shore, and could see all the late night traffic, and plenty of it.
The wind dropped off completly when we were just a few miles from the finish, so we just drifted across the line at 05.15 hrs right behind " Wild Tigres"
Grand Filou and Crazy Horse had also finished ahead of us, but thats fine, they are faster boats,
We entered the main harbour and were met by Paul and Susanna , who directed us to our berth alongside the quay wall,
We then connected to the shore power and washed the ship down before having a hearty breakfast on board.
Thats all for today.
Signed :-   Stephen Hyde  ( skipper )