On road again towards Flores, Azores 32:24N 064:37W

Sue & Alan
Fri 16 May 2014 14:35
After spending some time this morning perusing the synoptic charts, grib files and Met IV Atlantic forecast we up-hooked, visited Customs & finally fuel quay. The fuel quay was a problem because as we prepared to depart, with beam wind holding us on my first attempt to bow-spring-off was simply not good enough and between first & second attempt we cought an obstruction which has marked our beautiful. Something which will need a professional gelcoat repair at first opportunity because the mark is ugly! It was a bugger of a place to get-off in a 20kn beam wind holding us on and very limited manoeuvring space. Nevertheless, it is what it is and it's a shame but no one hurt and these things can happen. A new starting point I believe!
We're now on jib & 2 reef main close-hauling heading NE. We have a nasty Low few hundred miles to our E & N, which needs a beedy eye keeping on it because it is real nasty. Keeping it well to our N will actually give us good winds to progress steadily towards Azores. Later today/early tomorrow winds are due to change from E'lys to N'lys and when this happens we can tack and head due E for next couple days or so. All depends on accuract of forecasts of course. We;'r presently averaging about 5-6kn and that's plenty in these seas as we ride from wave to wave, our bow breaking through from time to time. Being close-hauled is certain not best ocean sailing and we are sure to appreciate when we can settle for wind more on our beam.
Our time is presently UT+3, which means we are 4 hours behind UK and we have 2 hours to flog clocks forward between now and Azores. We have almost 2 weeks in which to do this change.
Some mixed feelings starting an ocean passage. It's always going to be a challenging and never a complete doddle and I think everyone in our position harbours certain reservations because of 'chance'. All we can do is try and make best decisions to stay safe and arrive at our destination happy & well. That being our goal! Right now, as I watch our bow dropping under water and popping back up there is total respect of the elements and raw nature all around us.
In less than one week's time we will be half way into our 8 week cruising. Annie & Mike departs for UK and Sue comes out to join me. Too early to be counting down the days yet .......... I'm saving that until we arrive Flores. For time being we'll be concentrating on working this ocean passage.
Intention will be to post blog at or abouts noon each day. Like an update for family & friends, as well readers unknown?
Enjoy sunshine & gardening today My Lover xxxxx Also love to R,J,F & S and P,M,T & S xxxxx
Ticketeeboo MMSI 235071989 Callsign 2CED3, Ham callsign = m0hng
At 16/05/2014 14:00 UT our position was 3224.72'N 06437.35'W