11. November 2013

I stayed in Sardinia longer then I thought, it was a nice time with also changing winds and crew or visitors.

Finally I made up my mind and decided to sail back to Barcelona where everything started. So this was going to be the finishing of the Mediterranean Sea.

A younger guy from switzerland... ah you'll read it.

Here my logbook entry:

Alghero, Sardenia - Barcelona, Spain
11 october 2013

Day 1

The sky is grey the wind is light west north west. At 11:00 we lifted anchor, with me, Sylvian, french-swiss young guy who also goes by the nicknames, barbie, princess and rambo. He is very cautious of his skin, softhearted and a funny, open, naiv and adventures character. Knows nothing about sailing but is trying his best and i believe he will get there. 
The front stay (steelcable which holds the mast and the genua) is not in good shape and needs replacement in barcelona, till then i have to take it easy and not oversail her.
The wind for the trip looks very good not too much not too little good directions... Lets hope it turns out like that. We got about 330nm to go, about 3 days, might stop in Menorca if the wind blows us close to it.

At about 16:00 we caught 2 nice tuna on 2 of the line, both quite small, about 3kg and i was a species which i didn't know, like mix between makrel and tuna. 30min later the line went again but this time unfortunately it was a seagull. Stop engine, sing quitely to calm the bird down, pull him in, cover eyes and beek, take lure off and give him some time to chill and calm down and he went. He was ok and flew of straight away.

Other than that quite upset sea, big bouncy waves and no wind, uncomfortable ride on engine, banging and slapping sails, not good for my stay, so reef and more rolling.

The night is quiet so far, a bit of lighting in the distance, a bit of rain, a bit of wind that makes us sail smoothly at 5.5kn. No boat seen sofar.

The wind has picked up, the stars came out and we are running at average 6.5kn (reefed). We are making up for the endless hours of motoring in the daytime. Barbie is enjoying her beauty sleep. 

7:00 three big tuna strikes but all got away, wouldn't have mind one of them. I guess with 7kn of boat speed the tension was too much. 

Next strike had the fish 5m behind the boat just started saying to Sylvian "i don't mind..." Ping fish was gone. The end of the sentence was supposed to be "... Losing a fish!"

Strike 6: landed nice 8-10kg yellow fin tuna, fishing season is over for us, we got enough.

24h 115nm
7 h engine

Day 2

The wind has shifted and eased off. We are cruising slowly down wind with beautiful sunshine. Eating tuna tuna tuna, laundry and having showers. We also found out that we are a good match of bad chess players (score 5:4 for me at the moment). Since we left we have not seen one single other boat.

The night has set and alerted us that there are boats. While playing chess Sylvian noticed a ship heading straight for us in about 3 miles, quick radio contact, port to port (ships pass each other on their left side) and all good. We are closing in on Barcelona with high speed again, 125nm to go.

24:00 dark clouds surround us with heavy rain, spooky but all good. Light wind now but i still reefed in incase there is a sudden change of wind. Running with engine support to get through this.

4h engine

Day 3 

No wind, engine - boring. Chess score 10:5.
Back to slow sailing. Dolphines check.

So now we are closing in to barcelona and as expected i have mixed feeling. Premia de mar is the marina where everything started where we started to chase a dream, get la negra  and us ready for the big oceans, find new things, go out and adventure, search for the unknown. In some ways i (we) found that but in other ways we lost ourselves in it, realized that we had to go different direction, follow our own path. So with returning to premia it is the closure of this chapter and i am not sure whats next. Surely i will have to step on land and find a new way and a new project maybe even a new dream and maybe i continue sailing. I don't know. For now it feels like returning home after a long long journey. 65nm to go.

As closer we get as more the discomfort of the upcoming uncertainty comes. 50nm, the seabed is starting to rise, spain and the end is coming closer and closer. Will i sail again? Will i sell la negra? What am i going to do now? I have no answers. I feel beaten. La negra is calm and quietly sailing home as if she knows this is her last ride.

I know i am a bit to sentimental but this is how i feel and it reminds me of a song from leonad cohen:

Going home

I love to speak with leonard
He's a sportsman and a shepard
He's a lazy bastard living in a suit
But he does say what i tell him
Eventhou it isn't welcome
He just doesn't have the freedom to refuse
He will speak these words of wisdom
Like a sage of a man of vision
Althou he knows he is realy nothing
But a brief elaboration of a tube

Going home without my sorrow
Going home sometime tomorrow
Going home to where its better than before
Going home without my burden
Going home behind the curtain
Going home without the costume that i wore

He wants to write a love song
Handsome and forgiving
A manual for living with defeat
A cry above the suffering
A sacrifice recovery    
But that isn't want i need him to complete
I want him to be certain
That he doesn't have a burden
That he doesn't need a vision
That he only has permission
To do my instant bitting 
Which is say what i told him to repeat

Going home without my sorrow
Going home sometime tomorrow
Going home to where its better than before
Going home without my burden
Going home behind the curtain
Going home without the costume that i wore

I love to speak with leonard
He's a sportsman and a shepard
He's a lazy bastard living in a suit

23:30 now la negra is running home i have to slow her down, for one so we don't there in the middle of the night and for two to take pressure off the front stay, so we are actually reefed down as if we had 20+kn of wind and are still going at 4.5kn. 38nm to go.

24:00 the lights of cities ashore are in sight, closest distance to land 22nm.

6:00 we are right in front of the coast now, cruising slowly to wait for the sunrise.

9:30 the lines are tied to land.

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