Sat 20th June 1430
To all family and friends,
We have had the most amazing day. In the early
hours Rob and John were on the 0400 to 0800 watch and at 0700 Rob
kindly called Tony and myself onto deck ahead of our watch
We were greeted with the most wonderful sight
entering the Straits of Gibraltar---John's 0740 log entry reads ' Into Straits
of Gibraltar----Africa right /Spain left---Amazing sunrise'.
The low early sunlight filtered through a mist
which hovered over the sea and the mountains of Ceuta in Morocco and a
lighthouse at Tarifa on the Spanish mainland. The lighthouse had all the
qualities of a Hopper painting draped in early sunlight. We continued along
the Straits and enjoyed the sillouette of the hills turn from black to colour as
the angle of our boat changed.
At the same time Rob spotted a whale (approx
30ft in length) slowly taking air and gently gliding along
the Spanish shoreline heading out of the Med and into the
Atlantic. We couldn't believe it all at the same time. The chart has
detailed information regarding the migration of whales through the Straits
at certain months of the year with a requested 15 knot speed limit but we
never expected to see one------and as our sailing friends will know 15 knots
limit is never an issue !!
We added to the log ' 0740--Straits of Gibraltar to
our left, Africa to our right, Morocco. Amazing light--early light with mist,
mountains to our left and right and Gibraltar rock approaching. Great
atmosphere on deck--only added to by a whale gently swimming out of the Med to the Atlantic'.
To add to this wonderful sight it is hard to
describe the strong magical smell of spices and pine mingling from Europe and
Africa. It sounds unreal, almost fictional but we were rewarded with a sensory
feast of vision and smell.
This experience heightened the over flowing of
emotion that Tioram was now in the Med.
Our dear family and friends know that the first
time Tony and I thought of living and travelling on a boat came in 1995 when we
saw a couple lying asleep in the cockpit of their small yacht an early
morning in Zakinthos, Greece. It was raw , basic and magic and we said lets
We were so lucky to buy our first boat in 1996 and
after ordering her we bought a Greek courtesy flag---before we got the boat !!
These national flags have been symbolically added to over the years
hanging on a 5ft high model J class boat in our lounge----waiting patiently
Today we took them from the cupboard and enjoyed
taking photos on deck. We debated where the Med sea actually starts----after the
Straits ?? or at Gibraltar??
I sat on deck soaking up the magic of the occasion
wondering if we had officially arrived in the Med----at that moment we
motored through a group of small day boats with local fisherman---I waved to
them and they waved back----my emotion spilled over and I thought how could
this welcome be any better-----Tioram had arrived .
The emotion was shared, Tony realised
a twenty year dream, I marvelled in the moment of sight, sound ,scent
and a simple wave and decided the chances of so many lovely things coming
together (including a favourable tide) were a gift.
We were so priveledged to share this time with Rob
and John whom I know each individually marvelled at the uniqueness of
the atmosphere around us and so generously and kindly shared our moment
Love from all aboard Tioram in the
Rob, John,Tony and Tina x x x x