Ready to go….

Hola Boatbloggers ®

Once again, thanks to all our readers, and especially to those who have made comments either on our blog page or on Facebook.

The race begins this  Sunday 23rd at 1300, weather permitting. And the forecasts are good. So this will be our last official Boatblog® till we get to St Lucia, hopefully sometime roundabout the 14th December.

However, do not despair. There are still many ways you can follow our travels across the world’s oceans.

First of all, you can got to the official ARC website, which is on….

You should get taken straight to the right place, but if you get an option on which rally to follow, select ARC 2014 (not ARC+ 2014). Our boat is of course “Domini.” If you’re looking to see where we are in the race, you’ll probably find us near the back.

If you prefer to follow it on a smartphone, you can do the same thing by downloading an app called Yellowbrick for £1.99.  Again select ARC 2014 when it asks you which race you want to follow.


There is a possibility that we will put up blogs on the World Cruising Club site. It all depends on if we can upload them via a satellite link which is not guaranteed. If we do, the way to read them is to go to…

Then where it says “Search Boat Logs,” select Domini, ARC and year 2014


Another completely different way to follow us is to go to…

…which should show you where we are in the Atlantic, but won’t show you all the other boats. If you go to this one, you will have the advantage of being able to send us a message (Highlight  the tab saying “Julian Ronnie,” then click “message,”) Bear in mind that you can only send 160 characters per message. If you type more than this, it will send it as 2 messages, so think of it as more like sending a text than an email. Also, the tracking device only connects to the satellite for a brief second every ten minutes, so even if we are receiving and sending properly you will probably have to wait for twenty minutes or so to get a reply.

Don’t worry if you can’t find us right now. Most of it won’t go live until the race begins.

In the mean time, here is the news.

In the true spirit of showing off, which is most unlike Ju, here is a picture of him as The Standard Bearer for Great Britain at the Official Opening Ceremony of the ARC.

Official Flag Bearer


The selection process was rigourous and gruelling and was based on one of three things.

1)     Best Sailor

2)     Best Looking Skipper

3)     First PersonTo Put His Name On The List.

It’s hard to be sure, but I’m pretty certain it was one of the first two.

We are getting pretty exhausted, not from all the boat preparations, but from the continuous round of parties. It’s like a Club 18 – 30 holiday. Well, maybe a Club 50 – 80 holiday, but it’s still pretty knackering.

Mr  Mrs Baba


Fancy Dress

ARABIAN KNIGHTS. With John Vickers from AISLIG BHEAG. (Try saying that after a rum punch.)

Jeanneau even put on a dinner for all their owners (which was very nice of them, but makes us suspect we paid too much for the boat.)

Jeanneau Dinner


 Adios for now Amigos. Next blog from St Lucia!

Ju & Lyn

Viva Las Palmas

Hello Again Boatbloggers ®,


And huge apologies for the long radio silence.  The truth is, there hasn’t been much to blog about, and I don’t want to risk boring our huge numbers of adoring fan with trivial nonsense. But I have been stung into action by Alan’s blog comment, which for those of you who haven’t seen it, I repeat it here in full.


Hi Julian and Lyn,

So I promised to write more in response to the fabulous Rabat Blues and since it is now over a month since I promised that, it seemed appropriate to get on with it!

Clearly there has been something of a radio silence of late and of course this leads of all your blog followers to become a little nervous and apprehensive on your behalf Julian. After all there are many examples of intrepid travellers losing radio contact and the like. One just has to think of those orbiting the moon for example, or trekking to the poles and one is immediately reminded of the tense wait in between communications. So imagine my pleasant surprise just a few weeks ago when I was contacted directly by Julian. It was a wonderful moment and I felt truly special, honoured to be singled out for what was, in my mind at least, quite a tricky procedure. I know that these days modern communications have improved enormously since the days of Morse code and the like, but nevertheless as I heard Julian’s voice on the phone, I was impressed with the quality of the line. As he spoke, I imagined him grappling with the sheets, whilst the wind whistled Domini across the ocean waves. I have some experience myself of ship to shore radio transmissions (more of that in a moment) and so I was both pleased and relieved to hear from Julian. Imagine my surprise then, when in response to my enquiry as to his whereabouts, rather than some kind of nautical co-ordinates involving degrees and longitude, he said that he was in Acton. I’ll just let that sink in for a moment. Acton. Now Geography is not my strong point, in fairness nothing is, but even I could more or less point to Acton on a map and understand the relation between it and the Atlantic. Rabat for example is clearly on a coastline, indeed a coastline suspiciously close to the Atlantic, but Acton is West London and not a drop of ocean in sight. The Rabat Blues, so beautifully performed, gave all of we humble readers some sense of the frustration of waiting for just the right weather conditions for departure. But whilst hanging around in harbours of the world sharing seafaring stories with other old salts is surely a regular pastime of the hardened sailor, wandering up and down Acton High Road in search of The Guardian, hardly constitutes the spirit of adventure – mind you, then again, it is Acton. But look, I don’t wish to pour cold water on your earnest endeavours and I am willing to suspend disbelief. It may be that you are not just hanging out at home, waiting for your next sailing holiday around the Algarve. You may well be studying detailed charts in the library and wrestling with fathoms and plumb lines, but I think it may be time for another missive so we can remain truly connected to your holiday, sorry, adventure and so we can set aside any creeping cynicism.

I did mention that I had some ship to shore radio experience and I think you may have heard the story before, but since it comes from a time when I was AT SEA, it seemed appropriate. I had been aboard the luxury yacht, Lambda Mar only for a few hours and was trying very hard to settle into the lifestyle and forget all of my land-based troubles. With a gin and tonic in hand, I was approached by one of the many immaculately liveried stewards and informed that the Captain wanted to see me right away on the bridge for an urgent ship-to-shore radio call. “Who can this be?” I thought to myself. “An urgent call from the Prime minister perhaps, obviously for such an important person as I must be, aboard a luxury yacht, or most likely, an injury to one of our children”. They were staying with their Grandma at our house. My worst fears looked like being confirmed as I took the communication device being proffered by the Captain and heard the voice of my Mother-in-Law. She said she was sorry but felt this was a big enough emergency to have contacted the luxury yacht’s telephone. So what was it? A broken leg perhaps, or a car accident? No, the reason for the call was to ask me what she ought to say to the angry and disappointed parents who had been let down by the breakdown of our Postman Pat van and subsequent lack of party for 4 year old Chantelle. It wasn’t so much being bothered by the seemingly trivial matter by Grandma that upset me, it was more the complete bursting of any kind of illusory bubble that I might actually belong on this super yacht, rather than be the kind of person who was running Postman Pat parties for a living. As I left the bridge I bravely tried to laugh it off, as if this was simply one of thousands of such events I organised around the globe, but the Captain’s smirk dampened any last vestiges of delusion.

So Julian and Lyn, when the right conditions arrive and you really do get cracking across the Atlantic, just know that not only will I be thinking about you constantly, but I will also be awaiting your call.
Love to you both,
Al x


Now clearly there are a number of issues with this scurrilous article that I simply must address. In particular the erroneous use of the term, “sailing holiday,” to describe our intrepid expedition into the unknown, as though it were some sort of Sunsail jolly, or a Channel Ferry booze cruise. And yes while technically it may be true that we did return to darkest Acton for a VERY brief period, may I remind our readers, lest they fear that our courage may be waning, that even Christopher Columbus had a break occasionally. (By the way, did you know that Columbus in Spanish is “Colon.” We found that out  at The Colon Museum, right here in Las Palmas.)


So, what has happened since our time in Rabat? Or Acton, depending upon which version of the truth you prefer to believe. We sailed South – or more accurately motored as there was no wind – and ended up in Agadir, which is Morroco’s answer to Benidorm.




The people of Agadir are quite charming, but unfortunately it takes a long time to get anything done, and security is quite lax. (If you’re interested, they key to the pontoon is under the flowerpot by the gate.) The Capitaniere apologised for the state of the marina, but they’d had a storm four years ago.

Agadir Pontoon


And after a few days, we were ready to set sail, this time, across The Atlantic. Let me just repeat that incase Alan missed it. 


…to The Canary Islands. Gran Canaria in fact. We had good wind and sailed all the way, which surprisingly for a sailing expedition, doesn’t happen very often. It was largely uneventful, apart from the rudder getting snagged on some drifting old net.

Rudder snagged 


Ju had to go over the side again to cut us free. Unfortunately, as he jumped in, he slightly cut his finger on the knife. Nothing too serious, except that this is shark country. And if I remember my David Attenborough documentaries correctly, sharks can smell blood from up to 48 miles away. Lyn didn’t helping by singing the Theme from Jaws.

So there was no time to lose, and soon we were free, and able to carry on our merry way. After about three days we arrived in Las Palmas. 

Las Palmas is the home of the ARC – The Atlantic Rally for Cruisers, which is the race that we will be taking part in, so we have been busy preparing the boat, kitting it out with safety gear, adding davits, provisioning and so on. As well as attending lectures telling us what to do if the boat goes upside down, or the mast falls off, or we get eaten by a whale.

ARC Flag


Other than that, we have just been tourists. Gran Canaria is a surprising place. While the north of the island is quite sophisticated, in the south you feel a bit out of place without a tattoo on your forehead. The centre is stunning; like The Grand Canyon. Well….I’ve never been to the Grand Canyon, but it’s got lots of big mountains.


Lyn Mountains


We’re just over a week away till we cast off our lines and start the crossing, so it’s all getting a bit hectic in Las Palmas.

Official T Shirt



and here is a gratuitous selfie

Waving To Rory



That’s all for now Boatbloggers ® . Or “Avast,” as we sailors say.

I will be in touch before the starting pistol is fired with a link to “Yellowbrick,” which is a kind of satellite tracking device so you can see us as we go across.

Bye for now


Cap’n Ju & Lyn the Cru


Welcome back Boatbloggers,

This week’s report is going to be very short, because we haven’t done much boating to blog about. In fact – er….none. We’ve been stuck in Rabat waiting for an area of low pressure to move away and for the Azores High to re-establish itself. Which is a posh way of saying we’ve been waiting for the winds to be right. Sailors and wind are a bit like farmers and rain. It’s never quite the right sort of wind.

Which has not been a bad thing. We’ve had a great time in Morocco. We went to Casablanca and made a pilgrimage to Rick’s Bar.

Rick s Bar


Spent a few days in Fez…

A Fez in Fez


And we’ve met some great people from all over the world, from far flung places such as Chile and North Wales.  John & Janine on Orca Joss have sailed all the way from New Zealand just to be with us. John is an ace guitarist, so we decided to compete with the Call to Prayer and got a band together…



(Bootleg recordings will  be available shortly on iTunes – watch this space)

Lyn went native..

.Lyn converts to Islam

…and particularly likes Morroco because it’s one of the few places left in the world where the smoking fascists haven’t taken over You can still smoke inside!!!!



And this week’s gratuitous photo is actually a short series taken by Lyn, and is entitled “THE SORRY TALE OF A PLATE OF BISCUITS.”

(Ju had left the room briefly, so missed the event that these pictures record.)

Biscuits 1


Biscuits 2


Biscuits 3


Biscuits 4

A bientôt nos amis

Ju & Lyn


PS…Tomorrow we weigh anchor, hoist the sails, splice the mainbrace and set sail for Agadir. And all being well, will fly back to the UK for a week. 

Celebrations in the Velebit Mountains – Feast of the Assumption

Hi Dan,

Your adventure sounds amazing.

Yeah – the overnights are quite tough. We do 3 hour watches at night and catch up during the day which seems to work. Unless something goes wrong and you both have to be up at night for some reason. But there’s no denying that you basically feel knackered.


At Sea

Every year on the 15th August high in the Velebit mountains the death of the Virgin Mary and her acceptance into Heaven is commemorated. The local Tourist Office in Starigrad tell us about the festival and we are keen to visit, lured by a trip into the hills and the opportunity to watch a local festival.

We are without transport and the location is approximately 20 kilometres away and 900 metres up in the mountains.  We try our luck at hitching a lift, an easier option to walking!  Almost immediately a car pulls over and a young couple inside agree to give us a ride.  We hop in and exchange names.  It turns out by chance that Goran and Anna and their Jack Russell Tara are heading to the same festival, they have an invite from the campsite owner they are staying with.

As we get chatting we find out that we…

View original post 1,192 more words

Into Africa

Welcome back Boatbloggers,

Alan is getting very concerned that we haven’t crossed The Atlantic yet, so we decided to do as he suggested in his comment, and sail back down the river from Ayamonte and turn right. Westward ho! as us sailors would say. Towards The Atlantic and across to the New World.

Unfortunately, after about a day of sailing, the wind dropped, and once again we found ourselves becalmed. This time in a bar just outside Portimao…



…which would have been fine. Apart from the singer. Oh dear… the singer. She howled Tina Turner and Gloria Gaynor covers well into the early hours, making it impossible to sleep even at anchor over a mile away. Not so much a Siren luring unwary sailors onto the rocks, as a banshee making them throw themselves over the cliff, so the result was about the same.

We were planning on sailing to Madiera m’dears, but the wind was completely against us, and the forecast showed no sign of it changing for at least a week. We simply couldn’t take any more God-awful renditions of “You’re Simply The Best,”  and “I will Survive,” so we decided to weigh anchor and head for Rabat on the North coast of Africa instead.

It’s about a two day sail, and was memorable for us for a few reasons. The main one being that we got our cruising chute up for the first time. That might not sound a big deal to you, but for us it takes us onto a whole new level.

For those of you landlubbers that don’t know, a cruising chute is basically a spinnaker for dummies. (And a spinnaker is that great big colourful sail that they always put up when they’re taking photos of racing boats.) We’ve had this cruising chute for over a year now, and never been able to hoist it before. We’ve tried, but the wind conditions have never been right. They have to be just so. Light and slightly behind you. 

So it was with some trepidation that we pulled it out of the bag. The opportunities for comedy with a cruising chute are limitless, as a trip down to The Solent any weekend will show you. We tried to remember what our instructor Clive had told us about putting it up. Which rope got tied to what and so on. We rigged it all up, gingerly pulled on the snuffer, and….

Chute 1


Up it went.

This is so momentous, it’s got to be worth another photo.

Chute 4


One more…

Chute 5

And for those of you interested in these sort of statistics, it added about 2 knots to our speed. Which given how much it cost, works out at about a thousand pounds a knot. 

And so, looking like an oversized Liquorice Allsort we sailed on, at times dangling our feet over the bathing platform to cool down. 


FEET (Ju’s on the left, Lyn’s on the right – just In case you weren’t sure.)

The colour of the water out in The Atlantic is amazing. You won’t find that on the Dulux paint chart. And at night the stars have to be seen to be believed. Living in London the light pollution is so bad that you can barely see the moon, let alone the stars, but we have become quite dab hands at spotting Cassiopeia, The Square of Pegasus, Vega, Arcturus and the rest.

It was about five in the morning. Lyn had just gone on watch, and we were about 25 miles off the coast of Africa. The moon had set, the sun was an hour or so away from coming over the horizon, and it had clouded over, so it was completely pitch black.

And that was when we ran into the Moroccan fishing fleet.

I should just explain. When you start sailing, they give you a book called, “The Rules of the Road.” This contains everything you need to know about the Collregs, or ‘International Rules for the Prevention of Collisions at Sea,’ and deals with such matters as who has the right of way in any given situation, what lights you should show at night and so on. It is a weighty tome. Now I could be wrong, but my guess is that the average Moroccan fisherman sat in his little wooden boat has not read this book. Some were lit up like a Big Fat Gypsy wedding, but most had no lights at all.

Fishing Vessel At Night


And all of them laid out nets. Long nets. Nets-without-buoys-attached-to-show-you-where-they-are type of nets. Nets that are the perfect shape to wrap around your keel and tangle up your propellor type of nets.

Ju sat at the front of the boat with the searchlight, and Lyn steered as we wove our way through this labyrinthine mess as slowly as we could. We did run over one net, but fortunately Lyn was able to stop the propellor in time, and with the boat hooks we managed to untangle the keel and drift off it again. Even once the sun had come up they were impossible to see lying about six inches below the surface. It took over three hours to go just a couple of miles, and was a very tense time. 

Eventually we picked our way through, and shortly after got our first sight of Africa.



The river up to Rabat, the Moroccan capital, is quite hard to navigate, so they sent out a pilot boat which guided us in. It was great fun going along the river because of the fantastic welcome from the Moroccan people. It was like being visiting royalty. They were waving, shouting greetings and we had to dodge people in the water as they swam alongside us. We almost ran over one little boy in his armbands.

Rabat 2


Eventually we reached the harbour. Morocco used to be ruled by the French, and the combination of Arabic bureaucracy and French organisation means that getting through immigration is a pretty lengthy process. But here we are. We’ve sailed to a brand new continent! It’s not crossing the Atlantic Al, but pretty good all the same.

We’ve only been here a day, but we love it. It’s so very different from Europe, and would be impossible to overstate how friendly and welcoming the people are. Though if I’m going to have a proper conversation with a Moroccan I’ll to need to learn a bit more about Manchester United. They are all big fans. (Where are you Adam, when we need you?) When they hear my surname they are convinced that I must be Wayne Rooney’s dad, though how they can think I’m related to some short ugly red-headed bloke from up North is beyond me.

Rabat 3


Tomorrow we go to Casablanca. I’m going to find Rick’s bar, tell them my name’s Sam, and ask what time the gig starts.

A Bientôt nos amis


Ju & Lyn




Sweeney Todd


Action & Adventure on the High Seas

Hello again Boatblog®  Fans,

First of all, we would like to apologise to out regular readers for the late publication of this week’s edition of The Boatblog®. This is due to the temporary unavailability of the writers.

Under Arrest


Yes, we had a visit from the Policia Maritima, but I am pleased to report that with time off for good behaviour we can now resume normal service.

We have called this episode, “Action & Adventure on the High Seas.” This is in fact a little bit misleading, but if we called it, “More Holiday Snaps,” no one would read it. So “Action & Adventure on the High Seas,” it is. (I’ve worked in advertising, so these things come naturally.)

The main thing that happened this week is that Rory and Joe turned up. Which has certainly livened things up.

R  J Swimming


Joe Fishing


We’ve still not caught anything. We did get a bite, but the fish escaped with the lure. So the score at the moment is 

FISH                   1


Rory Dive 2





…and of course, DRINKING.

But the highlight of the week had to be diving with tuna. If you are in The Algarve and do nothing else, make sure you do this. It’s organised by Tuna Dive Tours ( and it is fantastic. You get driven out to the tuna farm in a super fast speedboat, then you pop on your SCUBA gear and get in with the fish.

Of course, at all times it is imperative that you look good.

 Lyn getting into diving suit


We got there at feeding time…

Mackerel Gun

That bazooka type thing underneath the crane is actually a Mackerel Gun. Apparently it’s based on an Australian pub game, and it actually fires out mackerel. 

Fish fed, it was time to get into the water. You don’t want to go swimming with a thousand hungry tunas.



Now I’m not one to exaggerate, but there were literally millions of them, and they are huge.

Tuna 2

They weigh up to 350kg, which is like five of Ju. Ok maybe four, but whatever it is, they are awesome. 

And delicious.

Rory had to go back home on Friday, but Joe stayed with us as we sailed into uncharted waters, up to The Rio Guadiana which is the river that marks the border with Portugal and Spain.

It was on this voyage that disaster struck…

What the

DISASTER STRIKING (reconstruction)

…and we went over a pot buoy.

We came to a very sudden halt, the engine cut out and we were stranded in the middle of the ocean. With complete disregard for her own personal safety, Lyn told Ju to put on the diving mask and flippers and go over the side to see what it was.

Once in the water, he immediately saw the problem.

Prop caught

The propellor was well and truly embedded into the pot buoy, and the rope was wrapped tightly round the prop shaft anchoring us to the bottom. Even if we could free ourselves from the rope, there was no wind, so we couldn’t sail back to port. Somehow, we had to release the propellor. it really was quite a problem.

Not to worry. Super-Ju to the rescue…

Mr Incredible


With his knife between his teeth he dived into the shark infested waters,  sawed through the tangled rope, and somehow manage to wrestle the pot buoy away from the propellor. All those years in the SAS* weren’t wasted.

Exhausted, but triumphant, he clambered back on board. With bated breath, he tried the engine. 

It worked.

What a hero!

And were were able to sail (well, motor technically)  on our merry way, accompanied by our friends, the dolphins

And this weeks arty farty photo prize goes to Rory, for his work called simply, “Boat.”

Arty boat


And this is a cool picture of our boat too…

Sunset Domini

Adios Amigos

Ju & Lyn

Ayamonte (Spain – but only just)

* South Acton Scouts

Sea Gypsies

Hello Boatblog fans, and welcome back for this week’s thrilling instalment of adventures on the high seas. Actually, it’s not going to be that thrilling because we haven’t left anchor since last week. So it’s going to be more like the average set of holiday snaps. But hey ho. Even Admiral Nelson had days off.

And thank you again for all those who have made comments or sent feedback, and for the likes on Facebook.

This week’s episode is called “Sea Gypsies, which is probably not very politically correct.  However, most yachting books refer to the type of  sailing that we are doing as cruising, but we thought if we called the blog “Middle Aged Cruisers,” it may attract the wrong sort of reader. So “Sea Gypsies” it is. And in it, we will try to give you some sort of an idea of what it is like to live on a boat day to day.

Mostly life at sea is very similar to life on land. You still take a taxi…


…and just like London, they go way too fast and frighten the passengers. (Sorry Danny)

Taxi Ride

You still need bread…(and this is boat baked bread – by a Frenchman, so you can imagine how good that is)

Bread Delivery


…go shopping



…visit Toni & Guy

Toni  Guy

…and do the laundry…

Laundry 2

…before popping over to see the neighbours for drinks in the evening.


With TIM & GAIL on their ketch, “WILD BIRD.”

Which is all very tiring, so it’s a good job that Lyn finally found a use for the spinnaker pole.


But it’s not all hard work. We were lucky this week, because our visit to Olhao happened to coincide with the Festival du Marisco, which bills itself as the WORLD’S LARGEST Shellfish and Music Festival. 

Ready to Rock


Now we haven’t been to that many Shellfish and Music Festivals, but it looked pretty big to us.

Seafood  Music Festival


They said it was going to be Sole Music, but I thought it was more Clam Rock. (Ha ha ha!  Genius!)

And this week’s Arty Farty Photoprize goes once again to Lyn for her work entitled “Street.” This is in Faro, which you thought was a horrible Benidorm sort of place, but in fact is a delightful old Portuguese town. And we’ve got hundreds of photos to prove it. But we thought we would spare you all that.

Arty Farty Faro


And now we are getting the boat ready to move upriver to Faro town itself, to meet Rory and Joe who are arriving at midnight tonight for a week of intrepid sailing. Or lying on the beach. We haven’t quite decided yet.

Adeus for now amigos,


Ju & Lyn


Welcome back Boatbloggers,

Apologies to Alan, and any of our other readers who are expecting exciting tales of derring-do and action-filled adventure on the high seas, as I’m afraid that once again this week’s episode is going to be less Robin Knox-Johnson and more Ronnie Knox-Drinksover.

This is because all this week, we have been joined on board by visitors from the Old Country. Firstly Paul Martin who came out at the start of the week, and then Nicho Shaw who joined us for the weekend.

Paul was expecting more of a super-yacht experience than we were able to offer, which is why he turned up dressed in his Gucci outfit and Louis Vuitton suitcase.


Those of you who know Paul will not be surprised to discover that his Hermes shoes cost more than our dinghy.

Nicho on the other hand, refuses to be sucked in by the designer labels, and prefers to dress more practically.



Once Paul had settled in, we cast off and set sail to secret anchorage that we had been told about by our friends Julie & Andy Skentelbery.  

Nice Legs

NICE LEGS (btw – that isn’t a garter; it’s a lifejacket strap)

Somewhere near Vilamoura, its exact location cannot be revealed here, as it is known to just a few seasoned Old Salts.

Arty Beach 


Fortunately, it isn’t completely deserted, and it is possible to get hold of emergency supplies.

Ice Cream


While we were there, Paul was keen for us to develop our nautical skills, and so very kindly bought us a fishing rod.

Paul Fishing


He was more than happy to share his many year’s experience of fishing at Roger Daltrey’s trout farm, and soon we were casting away like old pros. Unfortunately our first day was not as successful as we had hoped, as all we caught was a piece of rope and an old sandal.

The Catch


Undeterred, and with an enthusiasm that only other anglers will understand, Paul got up early next morning to try again. This time we caught a rusty can.


In fact, to date we haven’t actually caught anything remotely fish-like, but this is probably a good thing. We subsequently found out that we were in a marine nature conservation area, and if we had actually got something would have been liable to arrest.

Lyn thought our lack of fishing success was caused by us being rubbish, but fortunately Paul was able to explain that it was in fact because we were using lures and not spinners, the water was the wrong temperature, and there was a full moon.

Not to worry, at least we knew that there were no dangerous fish in the sea, so it was safe to go swimming.



Night at Anchor


Back in Vilamoura, a moment of history that needs trumpeting is that JU REPAIRED AN ENGINE. That may not sound like much, but I promise you this is something that has never ever happened before. The generator had inexplicably stopped working, and Ju managed to get it going!!! OK, it needed some talking through by our yachting expert in the UK, Chris Warwick (, plus many hours with the manual, but eventually he found the breaker that had tripped, reset it, all by himself, and BINGO! It started working again. Woo Woo!

Handyman Ju


…while Lyn & Paul swabbed the decks. 

Swabbing the decks

Just in time for some hard earned cocktails…



And this week’s arty farty photo prize goes to Lyn, for her work entitled simply, “Bush.”

Arty Bush


Adeus for now, amigos.


Ju & Lyn

More from The Algarve

Welcome back boatbloggers,

I’m afraid that our voyage half way round the world hasn’t got very far this week. About 21 miles in fact. That’s because it’s just so nice here, that we haven’t wanted to rush on. And we have really bought into the concept of mañana, although that gives a sense of urgency that doesn’t really exist over here.

There have however been a few firsts. In particular, we have spent most of the week at anchor, rather than berthing in a marina. Which has many advantages. Most notable of which is that it is free! It also meant that we got the dinghy out for the first time. Unfortunately, as we were getting out of the locker Ju dropped vital parts of the electric inflator overboard, Grrrrrr, which meant that we had to pump it up by hand. It wasn’t too much of a problem because Lyn likes the exercise, and soon we were off exploring the local caves and grottoes.



A great thing about the dinghy is that you can get to beaches that aren’t accessible by land. There was one particularly pretty one with only a few people on it, so we thought that we would land there for a quiet lunch by the gently lapping shore. Unfortunately as we got closer, we realised that the Germans had got there first.

The Germans had got here first


With everyone else being totally naked, we felt rather overdressed in our swimming costumes, so Ju decided if you can’t beat them, join them. (Sorry girls – no photos on the grounds of public decency) It was as he was striding down the beach for a refreshing dip au naturelle, that we found out that the nudist beach was part of the tourist trail. Hundreds of boats suddenly came round the corner, cameras flashing, children laughing, and the Captain bellowing  “Nude-y! Nude-y!” over the loudhailer.

Tourist Boats


The dinghy by the way, is now our new car.



By happy coincidence it turned out that two of Lyn’s friends, Ann & Heather, were holidaying in Praia, about five miles away from where we were anchored. Don’t bother to look it up, everywhere in Portugal is called Praia. They braved the dinghy ride and we all had a very pleasant lunch on deck.

The Girls


Our next anchorage was in Ferragudo, near Portimao, where they put the flags out for our arrival…

They put the flags out for our arrival

…and last night we arrived in Vilamoura, where we are looking forward to our friend Paul Martin arriving in an hour or two for a week’s sailing.

Or fishing.

Or sunbathing.

And it wouldn’t be a true boatblog without an arty farty picture of some sardines.



Adeus for now Amigoes


Ju & Lyn