It's always special when you return to the boat and see it peacefully tied
up to the dock just like you left it months ago. I'll be fixing and
fretting for a few days yet, but other than a little more rust in all the
usual places, all is well or at least like Mike and I left it. The
rigger/sail guy has replaced the lower shrouds, tuned thing up - sort of
like a piano, and done a little sail work. I love it when the elves keep
going even when you're not around.
I left Jacksonville on Wednesday the 4th and arrived here Friday the 6th
around 4 PM local time. Three planes two buses and a taxi later. A pretty
complicated travel plan that just worked... I was impressed. I was able to
spend most of the layover between the plane into Madrid and the bus to south
Spain in the Prado museum. It was just as impressive as the first time I
went. (Velasquez and Ribera!) My 45 pounds of checked spare parts, books,
and coffee even made it with me.
It was cold coming in this time of year. I left in October with just a rain
coat/windbreaker. It was cool in Jax, below freezing in Amsterdam, 4
degrees C in Madrid, 8 C in Granada, and 20 C once I got into Almiramar.
There was a pretty dense fog all along the coast. Coming down from the
Sierra Nevada's onto the Med coast. It looked like a cloud top hovering
over the water. From the back of the boat you just started to lose site of
the anchor on the bow. I've only done heavy fog on Lake Michigan once... an
experience I would rather pass in the Straights of Gibraltar with all the
I got the electric and water turned on, bought a month of internet that
still does not work, took a luke warm shower, and ate my first real meal
since I left Jax. This place is in winter holiday mode. About half the
joints are still closed. It was also a holiday here Friday - supermarket
was closed. I had fish and chips, peas, and two gin and tonics in a Brit
bar. I was invited into a group of Brit boaters and am now supposed to play
in a pool tournament on Wednesday. I went to bed (a real one) around 9:30
and am up typing at 3:00 AM local. My solution to jet lag is just sleep when
I feel like it. More later.