Long awaited catch up from UHURU

Steve Powell
Tue 28 May 2013 12:49

Hi All
Well at last the long awaited catch up. Sorry it’s been so long but we have been gently cruising up the Spanish coast enjoying ourselves. As you all know I try not to write  a travel log when I do my blog, there's nothing more boring if you are stuck at home in the rain. But sometimes it’s hard not too, as in all honesty this is not so much an adventure as we know it, more an extended summer vacation. Life onboard just trundles along from one sunny day with champagne sailing to another and then we put into a port and meet friends or find a fine restaurant. And one day just tends to drift into the next.....tough but true and then I realise that it’s been three weeks since my last blog and everyone's wondering what's happened to us.

So here's a quick summary of the last 3 weeks.....

After leaving Cascais we did have a little drama. We’d had a great days sailing with 25kts to 30kts  of wind from behind when one of our life rafts decided to deploy. There was a very load whump as the lift raft came out of it’s straps and inflated. As you would expect, this was no small life raft this is a Vicking ResCu Pro 8 man raft, huge. As we were doing probably 10 knots at the time the attaching line snapped immediately and we have this large life raft drifting aft of us. It was very pretty really, certainly impressive. I then had the dilemma of what to do about it? With only Beans, Bottie, Willie & Bertie onboard in 3m seas the chance of recovering my £2000 life raft safely were slim. The thought of them trying to drag this onboard while I tried to keep the boat steady in these conditions filled me with horror. But we couldn’t just leave it as it would cause all kinds of panic buttons to go off it it was found drifting, and it’s a navigational threat in itself. So we had to sink it. No easy task I can tell you. After multiple passes, all the time trying to position the boat so we didn’t get one of the drogue lines or painter hanging off it caught in our prop, Bottie finally managed to sink it using our tender anchor. It took 5 attempts, each time the anchor pierced another compartment until we finally lost it as it went down, taking our anchor with it. Well we then headed into the nearest port to report it to the Capitainia, just in case.

And we thought we were having such a lovely quiet day. For the record the fault was not with the excellent Viking Life raft it was the retaining strapped that failed.

We then made our next port of call Vilamoura, where we spent a couple of days being entertained great Irish friends Mark ‘Barker’ & Mandy McNiel who have a beautiful villa down there.

Then on to Gibraltar, not the most glamorous of stops but ideal for stocking up on Ginger Nuts and Cadbury's Fruit & Nut, also PK and Jude joined us there. The highlight of our stop in Gib was a surprise visit from our old friend and crew, the famous Chris  “I jumped into the Antarctic Ocean from the spreaders of UHURU” Durham. This was a classic case of the wonders of technology, Chris, who is now 2nd Officer on MV Phoenix II, a very large stink boat, was in Gib for just 8 hours refueling when he saw UHURU on the AIS (Automatic Identification System) and rushed over to find us and have lunch.

The Patagonia Crew reunion, Bottie, Willie, Chris, Beans and myself, with newcomer Bertie.

Then we went to visit Marbella to meet up with Kit and Tim Kemp who where staying at the Marbella Club, well to be more precise we went into Puerto Banus, a hot bed of sin and debauchery. Having been assigned one of the Super Yacht berths right on the quay side we just watched the world go by.... And boy did it.

Bottie and Bertie on the quayside planning the evenings entertainment. Our singing friends from Chile, and the Russian gentlemen next door seemed to have some very accommodating young ladies who pole danced most of the night. I have no idea what they did the rest of the night, I went to bed early with a good book.

Since then we have just been sailing up the coast recovering.

Willie at the helm, our auto pilot went AWOL just before Gibraltar and we haven’t managed to fix it yet so it’s manual helming all the way. As you can see the grumpy old man in the middle isn’t happy. But one of the benefits of no Auto Pilot is that Beans has had to learn how to take her turn at the helm.

We are now on our way to a little bay in Ibiza.

Beans at the helm guiding us into Ibiza. This girl just gets better and better.

As I said earlier, not a lot happened really.

By the way, just in case you were wondering, we have two life rafts, well we would wouldn’t we :-)

Luv from all the crew, and check out the photo gallery below.

28th May 2013

A different take on the old ‘Not the Nine O’clock News’ sketch.

Right to left:
“ I look down on him because I am the Skipper and he’s just the Engineer”
“ I look up to him because he’s the skipper and very handsome, I look down on him because he’s just a deckhand and an ugly bugger”
“ I look up to them because he’s an engineer and he’s the skipper and I am just a deckhand, but we all look down on Beans because we like what we see.”

NABS (Not Another Bertie Shot)

Yea right, so they forced me to get a haircut...... What are you going to make of it!

And finally.... Guilt is all over his face. Bertie is caught red handed climbing up into the bunk where his treats are kept. It’s took some smarts to figure out how to do this one.