Back in the Sun!
Chris and Penny Manley
Sat 30 Nov 2013 16:57
We arrived in Grenada via St Lucia on Wednesday November 20th, courtesy of British Airways. Their back drop at Gatwick left a lot to be desired. We had printed our boarding cards and baggage tags and attached them and it still took ages to get checked in. We had a quick breakfast at Jamie Oliver’s Italian – not his best – and then had 15 minutes before the gate closed. No time to stock up on some duty free Islay whisky. oh well , w.e will have to make do with gin and rum.
The boat was out of the water in Spice Island Marine. We didn’t stay on the boat but at an apartment block (Cool Running) 5 minutes walk from the boat yard. The boat looked good. she had been anti-fouled and polished and had scrubbed up well. We spent the few days before launching putting the inside back together etc. We had been worried that it might smell musty as it is so hot and humid here – but it smelt fine, so that is good.
We were launched on Monday November 25th. We had booked to go back in the water at 10 am. and at precisely that time the boat was in the water, we were on board, everything working well (ie the engine) and we were on our way to Le Phare Bleu marina, 5 miles along the southern coast to finish getting ready fro sailing up the islands.
This being a boat there were of course a few things that needed fixing. Whilst still in the boat yard we had a sea-cock that was jammed so that had to be replaced. Our macerator pump which pumps out our black water waste had fallen apart. This had happened before when we were in Israel, and been replaced, so fortunately we had a spare so that was a relief. We also discovered that the exhaust Y piece that joins the engine and generator exhaust pipes together was corroding along the welded bit. The engineer in Palm Marine services was able to reweld that for us. One of his chaps with long arms managed to get inside the lasserette to dismantle it. This is a boat – to reach lots of bits it is helpful to be a contortionist. The sails went on yesterday. We had help with that as we’re getting too old to heave heavy sails around – especially our fully battened main sail.
We have had a giro stabiliser fitted to our auto pilot. We hope this will improve its performance, and stop it wandering off course so much.
Chris is currently preparing chicken balti for dinner tonight, and tomorrow we will eat in the restaurant here. The marina has an old lightship that houses the showers and toilets, and it also has what is supposed to be a good restaurant which we were hoping would be open, but it isn’t open until December 14th when we will be long gone.
We are planning to leave on Monday to make our way up to St Lucia. We have volunteered to be one of the volunteer finish boats for this years ARC, which is the rally that we crossed the Atlantic with last year. They left Las Palmas last Sunday and are experiencing very different winds from the ones we had. We started off with winds up to gale force and rough seas, they have had light winds. Some of the boats have had to divert to the Cape Verde Islands to pick up more furl. Not a good idea too be low on fuel when there is still 2500 miles to go. it will be interesting to see and hear how everyone gets on.
You’ll all be pleased to know that the weather is hot (29C), wind is from the east at 15 knots, with gusts up to 20 – nice sailing weather. Tomorrow is forecast to be wet, but Monday will be good for the start of our journey north.