A day of fog and now a birthday in Dieppe

Tom Fenton and Faith Ressmeyer
Sat 2 Jun 2012 12:14
We're recovering nicely in this lovely port town, rested and clean with a beer and a glass of wine. Yesterday was a marathon 16 hours, only one of which was pure sailing. The other 15 were with engine, and over half of that time was in thick fog. At first the sun penetrated and the water shimmered a bit. A fishing boat steamed across our bow but that and a single red (port) light later were the only other signs of human life we saw. When the sun left us in the fourth hour the wind died completely, the sea went glassy and we lost any sense of distinction between water and 'sky'. But there's really no chance to be too scared, I discovered. There's too much to think about (what to do if something really does appear now, with only 50 feet of visibility), and too much watching all around to do. Plus keeping specs lenses clear enough to see the chart plotter. Which is really all you have to go on. It and our auto tiller did us proud for hour upon hour. We ate fruit and chocolate and drank water. Tom went below once to put some music on but after we moved from 'from the New York island to the gulf stream waters' into 'the old grey goose is dead' even his valiant attempt at cheerfulness was abandoned. Our hidden dread was coming into port in fog, at about midnight. Blessed moon! Out she came half an hour before Dieppe and what at first I thought was the ferry leaving soon crystallised into the harbour lights. 60.2 nautical miles from Boulogne we hung our lines on a visitors' pontoon, had a glass of wine and fell into our forepeak berth. Safe in a foreign place.