logo Pearl of Persia
Date: 28 Feb 2014 20:00:32
Title: Fernando

Lat 03:50.0S Long 032:24.5W
Fernando appeared in the morning haze as a rugged rocky volcanic mountain
with towering pinnacles but unfortunately no really calm protected
anchorage. We rounded the western edge and dropped anchor off the main
'port', among a couple of dozen local small fishing boats. It was still
windy and the boat was riding up and down on the anchor, not the calm we had
hoped for, but the bay was alive with dolphins, hundreds of them, circling
and diving as they rounded up their prey and we sat and watched them as we
(and I suppose they) ate breakfast .It was too windy to roll out the sail
and begin repairs, so we went ashore, found the local custom and immigration
hut, and checked back into Brazil, explaining the reasons for our
unscheduled stopover. The island is a marine park and attracts a few
tourists, mainly young Brazilians it seems, who come to enjoy the relaxed
environment and scuba diving. We hired a 'car', more like a big kart, for
the day with a couple of other yachts and explored along the rough dirt and
rocky roads and ended at a lovely deserted beach for a swim in the surf.
The wind was still up next day but we had to take the risk and get the sail
down so Sussanne and I, Oliver and Andrew, together with a friend on a
nearby boat, got prepared, rolled out the sail to its full extent and then
released the halyard to allow us to begin to pull the sail down onto the
deck. Immediately the wind hit the sail, the boat shot forward and began
sailing over the anchor chain and it was only quick action by all, that got
the sail on deck, doused and tied down before we had tugged the anchor off
the sea bed.
We found the tears in the sail were about a meter long and had developed
along a crease, which had gradually abraded through. The thousands of miles
we have covered are beginning to show. We pinned it out onto our oak
board... the same one we use to fillet the fish.... and taped it both sides,
but there are several other weak points which in time will fail. We will
need to get it 'overhauled' when we get to Grenada. Finished the afternoon
with Sussanne and me snorkelling under the boat to check all OK and
scrubbing the waterline trying to dislodge the weed that seems to have
suddenly appeared, and Oliver swimming around playing with a 'Go Pro' camera
he has borrowed
We are now back at sea, pointing to Grenada, 2000 miles away. Not much wind,
hot and sticky.

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