Tarifa to Gibraltar

Minka of Southampton - Cruising Log
Edmund Wigan
Sat 8 May 2010 19:18
There was not much wind for sailing first thing this morning so I waited for it as I didn't want to risk starting the engine. I needed a reasonable amount so that I could pick up steerage quickly to avoid hitting the wall at Tarifa harbour. About 10.00 the wind picked up and off we went. We made quite good time to Gibraltar Bay when the wind dropped just as I was going through the anchorage for all the big ships delivering tax free gin to Gibraltar (£8.50 a bottle).
The last five miles we covered at 2kts so you can work out how long that took. I was just concerned the wind would drop completely and leave me playing with the big ships. About a mile out I called up the marina to arrange some help getting into the berth without an engine. They didn't have room for me to park with or without an engine. Fortunately there are two marinas and the second one had a berth. It seems Gibraltar is popular with yachties..........could it be the price of gin? The chap in the second marina said he would come and take my lines for me  but couldn't offer a tow. I managed to sail right into the marina but then had to turn into the wind (what wind) to go into the berth. I started the engine and used it for that last bit. The last bodge that I did on the water hose held together anyway so no problem. The trick is to superglue the split in the hose before winding tape around it. Black tape seems superior to yellow as well. What am I an expert in...........?
The people in the marina are very friendly with a lot of liveaboards here. I have had a quick walk around town and it looks good. They take proper money here so I have put all my monopoly money in a box. It is very English and even has a chippie.
and one of the rock
I will be staying here for two weeks as I have decided it is time I learnt to sail. I have booked a one week course with a local sailing school to prepare me for taking the Yachtmaster Commercial qualification which I have been meaning to do for years.  I could then get casual work skippering charter boats in the summer which might be fun. We shall have to see because if the course is a pain I shall go and drink some gin. The great thing about being retired is that you don't have to do anything you don't want.
These blogs will probably be less frequent whilst I am here.