But we are safely here in Madeira.
Arrived yesterday (Monday) morning,
having stooged around all night. We lost the wind earlier and so made the
decision to get in to the marina at first light on Monday. Well, we tried,
but there were a few tankers who decided they were doing the same thing. They
found out that the pilots don’t start work until late around here, so we
knew to keep clear until they had all been put to bed. It is rather alarming to
discover a 900+ tanker suddenly aiming for you in the dead of night (we can
safely write this now that Dave and Sheena
are on the way and won’t read it until after the event!).
Anyway, those winds that deserted us in the days preceding,
suddenly found their voice and we were escorted into the bay on lively 20kts+
winds. Fortunately, the marina were very much on the ball - sending
an escort rib to make sure we knew where we were going and to ensure that they found
the right berth for a yacht our size. Fenders were set accordingly, and our
progress into the marina was made as smooth as possible by the escort,
Carlos. On approach to the berth, Carlos made sure he was in the correct
place to receive our ropes and again with good fortune, we’d got them set
correctly, ‘cos it was still windy!
After sorting out the ropes, Tom disappeared to complete
formalities……he then phoned to say he was having a beer in the bar (shock!) as the Director was not around…….checked
the fridge and no cold beers there – so broke out the birthday G&T ….the
rest of the day is a bit of a blur, but the sleep was good.
Impressions of the place are good, the marina is away from
Funchal and so they cannot do enough for you. We plan to be here
for a few days, there’s a fiesta at the weekend (for those that know, its
Bathgate Gala day, Madeira style) and we should have prime spot in the marina to
watch the procession. The wedding present will come into its own, so that
we can also travel by sea to watch events…..we might get a bit wet, but
it is windy around here. Seemingly, it can rain at any time all year round, but
its always warm!