Hell's Kitchen

Wed 26 Sep 2012 11:35
Position : 39º22'•36 N and 003º13'•32 E

Wednesday 25th of September 2012
1200h UTC


So the full crew for this trip is on board.


Jim and Olaf arrived Tuesday 16th September, 2012, and we worked all Wednesday and Thursday morning to have the boat ready. Not even time to do any sightseeing in Malta. So I won't bother you with Malta's rich history of the Turkish Invasions, the Knights, Napoleon and the 2nd World War . Only two people have left their mark on the Island. The Knights and the British. The first by creating an architectural bullwark of defences that are even today phenomenal, in their dimensions. The second left their mark by the traffic system ( left), the pubs and the ugly hotel scenery along the coast line. So let's move on.

It should have been a phantasitic sailig trip. We left on Thursday after lunch, having filled up with fuel, water and provisions, and the first real wind hit us when we came out of Valletta. It was not really the wind, more the sea, that stood against us. So we took a lot of water. Under the boat, over the boat, and finally in the boat ( through a leak in the forward hatch ). It took me all Wednesday morning to clean up. But the sailing fun ended here! At least for the time being. If it had continued blowing Force 5 , 6 or 7, we had been happy people. But the wind dropped. Already in the first night. And it didn't came back !!!!!! At least for 3 full days. I have never seen anything like this. We continued under engine for hours and hours, bored up to our necks, watch after watch ( timing system for us to be on the guard in the cockpit , like a work shift in the factory ), hot and humid, until finally on Sunday the 23.september even the moist air could not stand it anymore and released itself by turning moist air into thick fog. All along the Algerian Coast. In thick fog , with radar switched on, and pitch wet all around us . And we were coming to the point to make a stop-over decisoion for re-fuelling. Having looked at the weather charts the bad news continued. No change in weather until Tuesday 25th, and on Wedesday a depression moving over Spain into the Strait of Gibraltar with SW winds of up to 40 knots . Thank you. No fuellling or refuge in Algeria either. The Pilot states clearly that if you want to stay out of trouble with the algerian Administration, stay out of Algeria all together. We followed this advise. So what was the option left ? Well, easy. Let's eat first before we make a decision , shall we .

And that we started doing, as if Champagne was trying to get her first Michelin star . And the new Motto from that day is :




We ate and ate and ate, to the extend, that for the rest of our lives we might never feel hungry anymore. Cakes, Chicken wings, Pizzas, you name it, Fati cooked and baked and prepared it And all of this on the tiny ( 3 burner ) cooker we have. Plus an oven that would make Whirlpool, Electrolux , Miele and Gaggenau people laughing their guts out. But see for yourself what we did. Fantastic !

And then the kitchen turned into Hell. I mean we went from 'The naked Chef' concept all the way down into HELL'S KITCHEN.


In fact we had more than we had ever wished for. 40 - 45 knots of wind, and full on the nose, ie we had to sail close to the wind direction, and that meant : Gibraltar became out of reach.The forecasted depression had arrived way to early. And the quality of the kitchen suffered greatly. In fact to stand at the stove in these conditions became unbearable, although Fati really tried hard.The And I will keep it a secret how many times she fell sick.


But where to go ? Algeria ? No way !
So what about the other side of the wind angle ? Where would that lead us to ? I recommend at this stage that you take a look on a simple chart/map of the Med. Because we sailed North/ North West on a Southwesterly and later westerly wind, strength BF 7-8 ( see above ) and ended up in ?????????????



And this, dear reader is the story of Hell's kitchen. And because we are in a safe place now, actually in a very beautiful Marina of Mallorca called Cala Llonga on the South Easterly side of Mallorca, the first thing we did after having cleared up the forward cabin again ( we fixed the leak a day later , hopefully for good ), was .....to go for a fantastic dinner. And we celebrated Fati's birthday, which is in October , but who cares. And she even got flowers from Olaf. Now, as we know, the way to a man's heart is through his stomach.

Which proves my point : Never give up on good habits.

Best, Master Mike