From Amsterdam to the Canary Islands

In Voyages on 04/12/2009 at 19:19

From august to december 2009 Rolf sailed with his friend Baziel from Amsterdam to the Canary Islands. Their posts of these trips where made on another blog, that isn’t online anymore. Here you can find a summary of their adventures.

Baziel and Rolf in Lissabon

december 2009 Leaving Tenerife

Finally, the day has come…

Markus and Peter are settled in and we’re setting sail to Guadeloupe in an hour!!! Sorry for the lack of updates, but we’ve been very busy with repairs after an unfortunate incident with our furling system for the mainsail… We promise that we’ll make a big update to this website in january!

We’re on Tenerife in Marina San Miguel and after a lot of shopping (it’s amazing what you need for 3 weeks without supermarkets) we’ve packed everything on board and we’ve got a few tons of food and drinks with us. Have a look at Rolf’s facebook page for some pictures of the damages and provisioning…

Seeyall and we’ll update in the Carib!!!!!

september 2009 Portugal

Portugal for us started with Viana do Castelo. Viana do Castelo is very pretty town that had just had a week long party and was a bit partied out. But the people were friendly, prices were reasonable and the town was nice so we stayed an extra day or two. After that we went to Leicos, which is the harbour near Porto. They were so glad to have us, you could say they were electrified. They wanted to give us extra special much attention and boy did they. They put 380 Volts on the normal electricity wire just to give our arrival a little bit more oomph. As a fuse only blows when there are too many amperes, not when there is too high voltage this is what happened to our airco and battery charger.

Something similar happened to the power adapter of our printer, one of our laptops, the dustbuster and last but not least the boiler. The airco actually started a small fire underneath the couch. Now the airco we can live without, but the battery charger is very important as our ship uses a lot of energy. We have three fridges running , an x-box, a playstation, 3 laptops, a dishwasher a washing machine two aircos (well OK only one now) and all our sails are electrically driven as are our winches and the anchor. This luxury comes at a price and that is : we use a lot of electricity. Normally you don’t really notice that at home, but on a ship it gets desperate. At one time Baziel couldn’t even flush the toilet and well euhh yeah. Exactly. So we needed a battery charger quickly and who came to our rescue: a new friend.

This one is called Nelson Neeves and he is an electrician. He is also, and that is important , an Amel owner. His Amel is shall we say a little more durability tested as was ours, he has an Amel Euros. From 1973. A beautiful boat that Nelson had just acquired two months before. Well the outside was beautiful, the inside however was nonexistent. It was a fixer upper, but will be very pretty once done up especially with the bimini we didn’t use and fits Nelson’s boat perfectly. He took us out to dinner at a restaurant where the owner’s uncle dropped of some of his non-port. It is non-port as it does not come from Porto but from 200 kilometers away.

Anyway after two days our hero /friend Nelson had arranged for another batterycharger. Which is amazingly quick especially as you understand that these things typically need to be ordered in another country 3 weeks in advance. He had worked tirelessly to get us one. That evening we ate in our neighbors boat, Steve and Malisa. They are traveling to the Mediterranean. Check them out. The next day we were out of Leicos. If you go, check the voltage.

So having lost a lot of time we went crashing to Lissabon, not seeing Aveiro and not seeing Nazare. and then we found Lissabon. So we were in Lissabon and what did we do? We listened to Fado. We went to Cafe Luso and listened to a couple of fado singers and decided we liked it. a lot. Baziel got a private portuguese guitar performance of about 5 minutes by Fernando Silva which made him happy and we had a long talk with Catarina Rosa who sang fado since she was born. Then we got very drunk, and the next day Rolf took a flight home.

september 2009 Spain

After three days of motoring in almost constant company of dolphins and moon fish (or if you prefer that, sunfish) and seeing one whale blow and go down we reached Camarinas. The people were friendly we think, but no one spoke English. Roel had to translate almost everything. We made our temporary farewells to Roel ( He is going to show up again at some point) and sailed on to the end of the world.

In the middle ages Finisterre was supposed to be where the world stopped. Look at the name. You see. We did. and we met some very nice new friends there ! Christine and Suzanne were on holiday from Germany. It was really great to share something we love with some people that didn’t really have any feeling with sailing before and see how much they enjoyed this mini vacation within their vacation. We hope to meet them again somewhere.

After that we didn’t go to see Muros but stayed there and the next day we decided to go to the Isla Ons but the wind was too strong so we anchored nearby in Ria Pontevedra. After a restful day the next day we went to Isla Ons, a small island that is also a national park. We had decided to try out our diving gear for the first time. We had a sort and shall we say ‘refreshing’ dive. I’m sure it is pretty down there but mostly it was COLD. We also ate our first Percebes which are a kind of worm like anemone like creature. Quite nice actually.

After Isla Ons we went to Vigo where the customs officers came aboard to practice their German with us. We had a lot of laughs, not something i expected with customs officials. In Vigo we had a very nice meal with crab and clams and percebes. The percebes were brought to us by the owner expecting us to not have a clue, but we said ah, percebes, bueno, and started to eat with gusto. They hadn’t expected that.. We stayed an extra day.

The next day we went to A Guarda which is not so much a harbor as it is a sort of cakewalk factory, at least with the wind and waves we had. Finally at 5 in the morning another shipping vessel left it’s mooring and Rolf decided to steal that mooring too so at least we would be heading in to the waves instead of rolling with them. We finally got some sleep after that until two hours later when the fishermen returned and wanted their mooring back. We decided enough was enough. If this was how Spain wanted to treat us, we would just go. And we did.

august 2009 England

So we had said our goodbyes, and were on our way. First stop was going to be Dover. Baziel’s boss knew Baziel and wasn’t sure he was going to let him go quite so easily. So, Rene Kranendonk the old sea dog that he is decided to give a little management guidance to these 2 salty pups and came along for the first part. We left IJmuiden on Thursday august 6, 2009

The last time we went to England we went to Lowestoft and had way too much wind. This time we didn’t. we didn’t in fact have any wind so we used our engine. All the time. It didn’t matter, we arrived safely in Dover after a beautiful night of motoring. Rene decided too stay a little bit longer and came with us to Brighton, our next stop. Then we finally had some wind ! But now it was a litlle bit too much, force 7, so we decided to go to Dartmouth which we only knew because of some prison. We figured it would at least be safe. What we got was much better, have a look..

After Dartmouh we went to Plymouth were Roel came on board to help us get to Spain, as he lives there and therefore knows where it is. As a special treat for Roel they had a beautiful contest in fireworks that evening. Three organisations went for the price of Britains Best Fireworks and it showed. The next day we sailed of and 3 days later we were in Spain. We motored the whole way again. we had some nice company!

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