29th June 2008 - Lagos to Alvor (with new crew)

Bali Hai
Neal Stow
Sun 29 Jun 2008 16:53
The new crew arrived yesterday.  Jim, who I had met on the Yachtmaster Theroy course, his wife Lyn and Julian, a friend from university days.  Although Jim and Lyn had done some sailing they had only been on Bali Hai once before (for a weekend sail when there was no wind) and Julian has never been sailing before.
Yesterday was fine, largely because there was no sailing involved.  Jim and Lyn arrived around lunchtime and did some sightseeing in the afternoon.  Julian arrived early evening and after some drinks on the boat we headed to Linda's Beach Bar for dinner.  After giving management a bit of a talking to for losing our reservation, all was fine and we had a very nice meal.  Followed by a drink in a marina bar, followed by yet another drink on the boat.  It seems that this week is set to continue where Rally Portugal left off.
In the morning I was up early but when the others emerged they were definitely on the lethargic side.  All three claimed it was the heat but given that they continued drinking after I went to bed at midnight I am not so sure.  We managed to get the boat provisioned and at one o'clock we were ready to leave.  The departure was painfully slow, as was the stop off at the reception pontoon to check out.  Jim is not familiar with the boat, Lyn is not that experienced and Julian has about as much sailing knowledge as a dead haddock. 
The plan today was to head out into the bay and practice some sailing techniques, then go into Alvor and anchor for the night (only 2.5 miles from Lagos).  Well, after the effort of putting up the sails and two practice tacks the crew had had enough.  Both Julian and Lyn retired below suffering from exhaustion.  Jim was also pretty tired but was gallant enough to stay on deck, help me get to Alvor and anchor (which took several attempts). 
We are now peacefully at anchor and everyone is resting before taking the dinghy into town for dinner.  However, I am quite nervous about the week ahead and how the crew are going to perform.  We have two long 75 mile sails in this heat, to Cadiz and then to Gibraltar, with some potentially tricky docking required at the end.  Hopefully everyone will acclimatise pretty quickly.  If not and everything goes horribly wrong I suppose that there is the consolation that I now have some more davit handles.