Thu 12 Jul 2012 19:07
Well, here we are... it feels magical to be here. Where so many voyagers in the past have made landfall, and where they have left from to explore the world.
We had a straightforward day sail to get here, and because the coast is quite clean here, not many outlying rocks, we were able to sail quite close in to the wonderful cliffs and bays.
As we sailed in between the headlands we were greeted by a cormorant flying across our path. I am very fond of these birds, there was one who lived on the breakwater opposite our berth in Portland whilst we were working on the boat to get ready to go, and more living around our mooring when we were in Falmouth, and again different ones, without the yellow by their beaks, in the Belon river, so it was lovely to see one here. They can dive quite deep and have their feet right at the back of their bodies, just by their short tail, like paddles or rudders. To enable them to get so deep they don't have much oil on their feathers so they can become waterlogged, otherwise they'd be too buoyant, like ducks fighting hard to get below the surface, then bobbing up. But what this means is they have to dry out after diving, so you'll often see them sitting on a post or rock with their wings held out in the sunshine to dry.
Within an hour of arriving we had been greeted by three lots of humans too! Some dutch folk we were moored next to in Viveiro, and some Germans who had left Gijon at the same time that we did, and, surprisingly, an English couple in a ketch who were based in Portland nearby us this last winter whilst we both got our respective boats ready for voyaging. They had sold their Sadler 26 to some friends of ours who are sailing from Falmouth here as we speak, and who'll be crossing the Atlantic about the time we plan to.
So we had company for our first evening here, sitting out in the cockpit in the evening sun, enjoying wine and good conversation.