ARC Build up
Saturday 6th – Friday 12th November 2010
Once again, we’re sorry for the radio silence on the blog – we’ve simply been too busy with boat jobs and having too much fun at the parties. Alan hasn’t touched his laptop for 4 days and Mary’s at risk of getting rusty with Spider Solitaire!
We’ve been in Las Palmas a week and the ARC build up is now in full swing. There’s about 150 – 200 boats here with more arriving every day. The atmosphere is brilliant and everyone is so friendly, helpful and instantly ready for a party!! The boats are moored roughly by size so we’re with similar size boats, all of whom are great fun and we’re sure we’re on the most social pontoon!!
‘R’ Pontoon where Stella is berthed – it’s the place to be!!
Since we arrived we like to think we have been very busy, but all things are relative so it probably won’t sound like we’ve been doing much:
Saturday we spent registering, sorting the boat, doing a bit of shopping and getting organised before inviting a few people round for drinks. On Sunday Toby and Charlie came down (they arrived on the Island on Saturday and are having a week’s holiday on the other side of the Island). The four of us drove out to a small town in the centre of the Island and had a lovely lunch in a very ‘local’ (ie non touristy) restaurant. It was a refreshing change to briefly leave the ‘bubble’ in which we live in Las Palmas
Mary, Charlie & Toby in the small town of Teror – our brief escape from ‘The Bubble’
Monday was spent sourcing stainless steel parts in the industrial estate for mounting the new wind generator which (against better judgement) we have decided to fit. This is breaking all the rules of ‘don’t fit major equipment at the last minute’, but if it causes problems we’ll simply take it down (the fitting is designed that it can easily be taken down at sea).
Tuesday was spent fitting the wind generator. The pole and bracing struts are in place but as usual Alan needs a few extra fittings to finish the job. These are easily available but require a taxi to the industrial estate, so progress is temporarily stopped until Friday.
Wednesday was inspection day!! We had our rigging inspected in the morning (this was a free service that our insurance company provides!) and we were given a clean bill of health all round. In the afternoon we had our ARC safety inspection, which I’m pleased to say we passed first time!!! J
Getting ready for the ARC safety inspection
Thursday was school day. We attended all the ARC seminars which covered provisioning, rigging, management of emergencies, weather and routing and finally double handed sailing. All the lectures were excellent and packed full of really useful information.
Every evening there has been either organised parties which have been great fun, or ‘drinks on boats’ – and on most nights both! We’re starting to worry whether we can stand the pace for another week!!!
Whilst Las Palmas isn’t the most scenic place, it’s more than compensated by the atmosphere of the ARC – which so far is definitely living up to the high expectations that we had!
We probably won’t have time for many more updates over the next week, so apologies in advance if the blog remains a little quiet. However, once we leave Las Palmas on Sunday 21 November we’ll have lots of time to bore you with our news!!
Stella looking very smart in her ‘dressed overall’ flags which we’re proud to say were hand made by Gill, the previous owner. They are definitely the poshest flags aloft!!