Cyprus to Port Said 3-6 August 2006

david and margaret ritchie
Wed 9 Aug 2006 13:40
03/08/06 Washed boat, fuelled up and left for Port Said about 1000am. Wind on the nose for the first 50 miles, so engined then sailed close hauled overnight for another 50 miles before we could ease off the wind. Had beautiful wind all the way, a lot of the time reaching at over 6 knots. As we neared Egypt, we had to take down the main and reef the jib to slow down so that we could arrive in daylight.At 0530 on 6th August, Port Said was in the distance.We skirted cautiously round the many container ships etc at anchor, to reach the buoyed channel to Port Faoud where we were to tie up. We were met by a pilot boat who insisted on us taking a pilot on board for the final 100 metres - and of course the pilot demanded baksheesh!! The marina is the dirtiest, smelliest place I've ever been tied up in but the staff are very pleasant and helpful. David went to check the toilets ashore and couldn't describe the state they were in . We could not believe our eyes when we saw an instructor and a class of about 20 children appear for a swimming lesson  in that filthy water.The town however was vibrant and lively into the small hours, we enjoyed a great dinner at a fish restaurant recommended by the boat next door and we were amazed at the range of muslim dress universally worn by the women