Wednesday, 16 January 2013

Staying another day in Mindelo

We have seen the weather forecast and rather than "bust a gut" and rush we are getting ready to leave tomorrow for "the Caribbean" not too sure where, Trinidad maybe Barbados, maybe, who knows depends on where the wind and sea take us. Watch this space!

The surge in the marina last night was not too nice and we had several attempts at pulling us off the pontoon. Apparently the swell outside is more than 3 metres so its to be expected. We watched a couple of other boats leave this morning while we ate our bacon and egg rolls in the floating bar. Its still warm but a little overcast today not too sure what we are doing yet.

Don, Glenys, Ern and Karen

Monday, 14 January 2013

Cape Verde, Mindelo

Cape Verde, Mindelo

Happy to reach The Cape Verde Islands, Sao Vicente, Mindelo.

An early morning approach into Sao Vicente
It isn't advisable to go into Mindelo at night so we stayed well outside but did suffer from a very lumpy sea.

We are in the Mindelo marina which is at the edge of the town. The crossing from Tenerife was varied, sometimes quite calm and other days the swell was lets say lumpy.

Don and Ern did the night watches between them and Karen and I kept them company when we couldn't get to sleep. We have been eating well along the way and we tried to eat our main meal together before dark, we use bowls as you can't keep food on plates with the rocking about. I did consider buying big dog bowls, hmm I may look for some here later.

Ern and Karen

Karen awake for both sunrise and sunset
We arrived yesterday morning, the weather quite warm and sunny so far so good, its very windy this morning and howling now. All of us walked a little into town and had breakfast, a mix of eggs, ham, sausage a little like chorizo, bread, jam, juice and coffee, not a bad for about 5 euros.

Within the marina is a floating bar with a menu which looks ok but when I asked for a coffee they said they bought out an old jar of de caff so I said can I have an orange juice then? nope they don't have any, I ended up with the remnants of a peach drink which I suspect may have been open for a while.
I doubt they have anything that is on the menu but they have plenty of beer and I did see some spirits.

So far from what we have seen of the town it reminds me of Kenya, pastel coloured colonial type buildings, small tourist shops with "tat". We found out where the markets are and today we have to go to immigration so we can check the boat in / out before we leave. We are told if we want to explore the best way is by taxi as the busses only leave when they are full and you can't always rely on a bus to bring you back so I doubt we will be going far. Its quoted to have 491,575 people here most of them are under the age of 24 and Mindelo is where they live. Mindelo is a busy place with ferries coming and going, twice a day. We walked through the pavement street markets where they sell fish and vegetables which are in very poor condition. 

building in a side street

At least this guy cares for his dog. There are many stray dogs about

A hotel at the top of the town

The sign at the entrance of the marina, no street sellers, they totally ignore this, mind you its normally sunglasses, T shirts and bracelets 

Big bird on a roundabout
Karen and I refused to go into the fish market, Don and Ern said it was swarming with flies. Its sad to see children and adults begging on almost every street. The extreme's are very noticeable, from very well dressed people and new cars to people dressed in rags and no shoes. The vegetable market we went into were trying to sell things that we would throw away like sprouting potatoes and onions that had green shoots, dried fish covered in flies Yuk!

Markets in the gutters

Provisions from the supermarket

This is the university
We still have the normal jobs to do, laundry and buy a few provisions gas and fuel, prepare a few more meals to freeze then our plans are to leave on Wednesday again dependent on the weather.
Tonight there was a meeting in the marina bar and we met quite a few people from around 10 other boats crossing to the Caribbean so we exchanged names, numbers e-mail addresses and boat call signs.

Agua Therapy

Tuesday, 1 January 2013

Busy getting ready now

Hi everyone, yes we know the blog hasn’t been updated for quite a while and I’m afraid this is going to be short and sweet.
We crossed from Gran Canaria and managed to sail using the parasailor again for quite a way but ended up motoring in for the last 3 hours because the wind died.

The marina we are in “marina Santa Cruz, Tenerife” is ok but the internet is a it of a problem so for now so this may be the last one for a little while. We are hoping to do a short text updates via the sat phone while we are at sea.

Tenerife: Quite a pleasant surprise the City of Santa Cruz is nice, a very busy place most of the town has narrow streets in which people still manage to park although bumper to bumper. 

We are moored in a marina very close to the commercial port so there are constant ferries and cruise ships spewing out soot from their funnels so the boat will have to be scrubbed again. Don and I walked into town and we have seen a lovely park in the centre. The whole place is full of decorations santas and lights.

The transport system seems very good too there are trams which always seem to be full.
The destination said Trinidad but I doubt its the same Trinidad we are going to
On Sunday (30th) we travelled by bus to the south of the island so we could meet up with our crew Ern and Karen at the airport. We did manage to look around Los Christianas before we went to the airport, that part of the coast from what we saw is like Blackpool with the sun, having said that we did manage a Sunday roast lamb dinner.

As you noticed from the title we are so busy now, yesterday Karen and I emptied all the foods from the cupboards to see list to see how we can plan meals for the journey, now all we have to do is raid the supermarkets and have the provisions delivered to the boat. Don and Ern were buy trying to get the SSB radio to work with the pc so we can get e-mails and weather information during the crossing, hmm they haven’t had much luck yet though.

Now this guy with Don is huge!!!!!!

What is it with all these women carrying baskets on their heads? 

This guy just had to get the last rays of the sun anyway and anywhere he could

Last night after dinner we walked into town to see the festivities and bought in the new year with a bottle of fizz. There was live music and another amazing firework display afterwards.
Well now we have more of an idea of when we are leaving to cross, probably by Thursday or Friday dependent on the weather too.

Agua Therapy

Don and Glenys