Preparations in Lanzarote
28:51.5N 13 49.0W
Rubicon Marina, Lanzarote
Elizabeth and Mark arrived from London on 27 December in order to oversee the launch of Lovesail after layup and to commission the boat. Everything was as expected: the hotel had no record of our reservation, Lovesail was nowhere near ready to launch, but at least the weather was fine. These things are normal and we gradually got things sorted over the next few days. Unfortunately E had picked up a cold bug in London and wasn’t feeling too good but nevertheless we accumulated large supplies of stores after visiting various supermarkets around the island.
On the Sunday, we took a day of rest and explored the island. We were most impressed by the volcanoes and lava fields known as the Mountains of the Moon due to their desolate aspect (also known as the Timanfaya National Park). There was much evidence of Lanzarote’s famous son – Cesar Manrique – whose art and vision seems to have shaped the tourist development in a sympathetic way. We also visited the Jameos del Agua – an extraordinary cultural centre and performance space shaped out of a lava tube – another Manrique work. Other highlights of the rapid tour included Johnny’s bakery and a fish dinner at the shoreside village of El Golfo.
Lovesail was finally launched on Tuesday, 3 January, and in the evening we went to the airport to meet Craig and Lucy, arriving from London. It was good to see them and very good to finally sleep aboard. Final preparations continued on Wed. Lucy helped E with washing all the fruit and veg before loading on board while Craig helped M with various jobs around the boat.
And then it was time to fuel and go. However it was not to be quite so simple: at the fuel dock the attendant dropped his keys in the water so couldn’t operate the pumps! After a while, a diver appeared to retrieve them. We took on fuel and then left the dock to spend the night at anchor in the bay outside the marina.
Our plan was to set sail the next day for Tenerife – about 130 miles and 27-30 hours away. We were going to stop there to return to London to attend a family funeral. On 6 January 2012, at about 1000, off we went. Goodbye Lanzarote!