After we had left Las Palmas we soon had a strong wind from the back and put away the main sail during the first night because a reefed genoa was already enough to give us a decent speed of 5 to 6 knots.
Sören and me became sea sick and threw up from time to time. In the beginning of the trip the weather was very rough with 7 Bft. of wind, although it came form behind we still had rocky movements of the boat. And at least in my case when I am sea sick my blood pressure is low and I also get very cold although the outside temperature was still around 18°C. But together with the high wind speed it was very chilly. However, we all did our watches with three hours during the night (20-23, 23- 02, 02 – 05 and 05-08) and four hours during the day (8-12. 12- 16 and 16 .- 20) and such a three hour watch was bearable time despite the cold.
The good thing was that there were literally no other ships to be seen so a sharp look around every 10 minutes was good enough and in between one could hide away as far as possible in the cock pit. We got often waves splashing into the cockpit so we were all the time wet and of course under deck it was difficult to maintain things dry as the foul weather gear (Seglerkleidung) was wet. Once we had a big wave coming into the cockpit from the back and it filled the cockpit all the way up to the lids of the storage compartments. But with in 20 seconds the whole was gone through the self draining wholes in the cockpit floor. But Sören was all wet afterwards because he had been directly hit by the wave. Luckily we had the wash boards (Steckschotten im Niedergang) in so no problematic amount of water came in. Only the role of kitchen paper go soaking wet and could only be thrown away.
On the fourth day the weather had calmed down and we could enjoy sunshine in the cockpit. But appetite had not yet really come back.
But on the fifth day everybody had gotten back his healthy appetite so we had a fine tuna salad, we had cofffee, Sören and Marcos interchanged with playing on the guitar and we put out our fishing rod (Angel).
Apparently we also caught a fish but the moment we had it on the hook, it was already gone and when we pulled in the line all the bait was gone and some blood on the line. It must have been a big fish, too big for our line and it broke.
On the sixth day which later turned out to be the last day, the conditions again got a bit rollier. Around the middle of our trip I had hoped to arrive at Mindelo just before sun set on the evening of the sixth day but it turned out that we had been not that fast enough. So the arrival time was just before midnight, meaning at darkness. I had been worried to arrive there at midnight because the pilot books were talking about unmarked wrecks in the anchor bight I had been thining about to slow down sothat we would arrive at the next morning with sun rise. But then I thought, damn it, why should we stay out a whole night for nothing. I took a closer look at the sea chart and thought that if we keep close to the commercial harbour we should be safe from possible wrecks. So let´s try it.
Coming from sea we first aimed for the light house on the little island Ilheu dos Passaros at the entrance of the Mindelo Bight. From there we turned almost south to head for the outer breakwater (Hafenmole) of the commercial harbour and from there directly east to the ferry terminal. And from there we could see the mast of the yachts in the marina. I originally wanted to moore at the fishing club but there we were told that everything is full and an friendly man in a dinghy guided us through the anchoring boats into the marina. He and another man from the marina helped us with the mooring lines and so on Tuesday 13. January 2015 at 23:45 UTC or 22:45 local time we had arrived after 870nm in six days and 8 hours.
That makes an average speed of 5,7 knots! Not bad! And all just under a most of the time reefed genoa. So, as usual, after all everything went well. I wonder sometimes how helpful some pilot books are if they seem to describe things more complicated then they actually are. Why can´t they just describe how the straight forward way is and what the restrictions are, i.e. what dangers are to be observed. Then everybody can take his own decision whether he/she wants to do it or not.
Despite we were tired, after our mooring beer we headed for the town because after all that sitting and lying in the boat we wanted to walk. After some looking around we asked a local lady for a place to eat and she guided us to a bar where we got pizza. It was the worst pizza we had ever eaten but under the given circumstances it was great. After the dinner we went to sleep and all three of us we dreamt wild dreams.