A False start
I left on Monday but didn’t get very far. Firstly there was a hold up at the lifting bridge. a big motor boat went through oh so slowly, must have taken him 15 mins or so. The bridge keeper was getting really irate with him over the vhf, telling him he was causing a holdup and that he must clear the channel now,
quite amusing, the keeper obviously cared nothing no deference shown for the megarich man in his superyacht, who I bet not often gets talked to like that, though probably it was a lackey captain at the controls.
Anyway I got through eventually but then along came the first of many squalls, you cant see them coming as they come over the mountain so little warning, high winds and torrential rain, and visibility down to about nothing. After about the third or fourth in about an hour I decided to go back I was drenched and fed up with it. Two more on way back including one just as was about the drop the anchor. It was thoroughly unpleasant. Anyway I made right decision because rest of day, eve and night was very cloudy and dark, not nice at all.
I left at two pm the next day, Tuesday. Bit of a repeat performance, really nasty squall about half an hour after I’d left with really really strong wind. Martha couldn’t cope and the boat rounded up and made a dash for the shore so I fought that and steered offshore. With the full yankee out I had way too much sail up for 30 knots of wind I then struggled to roll up the yankee, lost a sheet to the wind, normally the stopper knot stops it pulling through the blocks but not this time. Anyway I got the sail furled and just lay ahull for a while until the squall passed, then I could sort it all out. Fortunately just the one squall this time thereafter the weather looked fine. It was a bit windy mind 25 knots or so but downwind sailing so not splashy or sprayey, just a bit rolly with a sizeable swell. After sunset I had a nice half moon until it set about 4am. Not too much chance to cat nap as there were quite a few boats about. When it got light at 06.30 we had done 75 miles and I could see the island, perfect timing. Switching on the gps to double check and were 6 miles from our waypoint at end of Virgin Gorda and bang on target, pleasing that. Past Pajaros Point we just had to thread a way past the reefs and Richard Branson’s private island (Necker Island) and past Pull or be Dammed Point to follow the channel get into Gorda or North Sound. So here I am in BVI.
I had a few days...