Fowey - welcome back




50:20.76N 4:37.81W

12.00 2nd July

The eagle eyed may have noticed that the position given for Fowey in the
last entry has now altered. This is because we have moved up the river to
the peaceful creek called Mixtow alongside Polonius belonging to our dear
friends John and Moyra. Before we got here however, there were surprises in
store.

Our instructions had been to berth on the east side of the harbour at
Polruan at 16.30 precisely. We had arrived earlier in the day and anchored
around the corner at Polkerris for breakfast a rest and a general tidy. At
the appointed time Sue was on the quay and First Mate Clive got off. No one
else aorund. OK, so we pick up a mooring - the RNSA mooring was free - and
settle in. Sue has brought a steak dinner which was superb. We had no
trouble sleeping.

An unhurried morning followed. I was expecting instructions and when they
came I was surprised, becuse we were going sailing! A beautiful day and a
gentle breeze allowed us to cross Par Bay and anchor off the small harbour
of Charlestown. We even caught a mackerel on the way over, caught unnoticed
on a squid lure and dragged across the bay. Lunch was superb and before we
left there were further instructions. We had to "dress overall" and that
means putting up our large collection of signalling flags, for the bow and
stern to the mast head. Once done it was another gentle sail back with
orders to wait near the harbour entrance. Saturday dinghy racing filled the
entrance as they beat out past us but two other yachts came out both dressed
overall. To my complete surprise Alan and Marianne were here. We had sailed
the Atlantic with them in 2003 and they stayed in the Carribean while we
continued on. The other surprise was Martin and Liz who had helped us at the
time of the tsunami in Thailand and that I had not seen since. So the convoy
entered the harbour - just keep going I was told and thought we might be
coming up the river to Mixtow.

On the lifeboat pontoon a lot of people waiting, as if for a ferry. Wrong
place I thought but as if to answer me, there were shouts and hoots and it
was for us! Family and friends had come from everywhere to welcome us back
and it is difficult to describe the emotion except to say that it felt so
very good to be surrounded by loved ones. The pontoon is short stay only but
Sue had managed to persuade the harbour master to reserve the berth for the
night and the party continued. Later we were all at the Fowey Gallants
sailing club for a barbecue on a warm evening overlooking the river.
Absolutely perfect as a homecoming. A huge thank you to Sue for making it so
and a nearly as big thank you to all those who travelled to Fowey.

However much power Sue had we were politely asked to move on Sunday a a
small party of sailors made it up the river for a short cruise as far as
Golant and then back to Mixtow. Sue left the following morning, back to work
for a few days before returning to sail towards home. The skipper has been
carrying out essential repairs and cleaning in preparation for our return to
Essex. More news at the weekend. Thanks again to everyone. Just wonderful!