Well if any of you are my age, you will remember the song by Andy Williams called ‘Almost there’ and yes after many miles of careful planning and dodging the storms, we are almost there.
It hasn’t been an easy voyage and not one that many of us planned or anticipated for: mostly motoring to beat the strong southerly winds, very little sail handling and many hours tucked away in the safety of bays and harbours. There was disappointment in the delay in taking the first step across the channel, but we had very little choice.
We are three days late arriving Lisbon, Tenacious’s first leg. Deadlines and flights have been missed causing added expenditure, but the voyage has been a success.
The reason I say success is because the strength of the people that sailed, ok motored, on Tenacious can be compared to one of its ropes, its strength does not rely on an individual strand but by the many strands woven into one to make it one strong bond.
It has been hard work with the strong weather conditions, intermittent changes of watch keeping, interrupted sleep patterns and mess duties. Daily seeing Tenacious inhabitants darting in and out, often weary but always ready for a quick chat, nod, smile or ‘How are you?’
As I previously mentioned in a previous blog Darren the Captain, the permanent crew, Alan the Medical Purser, Micha the cook and Fiona his assistant get on with jobs but always have time for us. This puts the voyage crew at ease, especially novices to sailing on a tall ship. They cater not only for our food but our foibles as well. They give their time to give excellent talks on navigation, rope handling etc.
Finally, for me it had been a wonderful voyage and experience. I have met strangers, each one a small adventure in themselves, each one a different story book.
So, thank you to all of the above, JST and the beautiful, yes I am going to call her a lady, Tenacious and long may she give the pleasure she had given me for many more years.