07/05/2017 – Farewell the BVI

It is 27 hours since we crossed the start line outside Nanny Cay Marina on Tortola, our home for the past 8 days. The excitement and anticipation of our travels ahead, towards Bermuda, onwards to the Azores and finally home to Portsmouth Harbour, England, is tinged with sadness. We have said goodbye to the Caribbean islands for almost certainly the last time. When we left with ARC Europe in 2010 we were already planning a return with, hopefully, a bigger boat. The plan came to fruition when we bought Starblazer and returned to the Caribbean and onwards around the world. Now we have to make plans for different sailing destinations! ...... ...... All is not doom and gloom on board though. The first 24 hours gave us fantastic sailing, reeling off 165 nM towards Bermuda plus 7 miles in a sideways direction to wriggle clear of the Virgin Islands. We also had a good start, crossing the line in 7th or 8th place out of 35 boats going to Bermuda. All night long we could see the lights of 3 boats behind and 3 boats ahead though this afternoon I can only spot 3 of them. On handicap only 4 boats are rated slower than us so we believe we are doing really well, however it’s a bit of a lottery because the wind is forecast to drop and we can’t motor as fast as we can sail. We also cannot use the cruising chute because the bowsprit pole managed to bend the stem fitting where it was tied to one of the rollers but at least we replaced the jib with the 150% genoa for the journey. ...... ...... It’s early days, but the catering department (i.e. me) has a reputation to defend. Yesterday’s lunch, half an hour after the start, was pizza and dinner was beef carbonnade with potatoes followed by yogurt. ...... ...... Joyce

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