Mr Grib bowls a googly!

Our idea this summer was to have no fixed idea of where we should go, other than a slight preference for Scotland or the West coast of Ireland. Mr Grib has of course taken up the challenge and delivered marvellous winds for South Brittany, which is of course the only area in the whole of Europe for which we do not have charts.

He did however relent and give us a marvellous day pottering around the Western rocks in the Scillies looking at puffins, and then promised 12 knots of NE wind to take us to Ireland. Life is never that easy I hear you say? If you did, you would be right, as he added in a spectacular Googly -fog!

There followed much agonised perusing of the tea leaves, the result of which was the realisation that if we didnt take this opportunity, it would be back to beating in fresh Northerlies. So fog it was then. Festina slips along effortlessly on a beam reach so the sailing was fast and comfortable and in truth with AIS and radar a lot less stressful than in days of old Рbut it would have been nice to see where we were going.

Someone else struggled with the conditions. A rather bedraggled swallow spent an hour or so fluttering around the rig before diving down below and taking up residence on the saloon table. The problem was every time we moved he would fly out and then spend another 15 minutes fluttering around in the fog before plucking up courage to come below again. Lynda and I spent the night tip toing around and speaking in whispers like a couple of doting grandparents not wanting to wake the kids – and even turned the heater on in the coldest part of the night to keep him or her warm. Once the sun was up, he woke up, circled the boat a couple of times before heading off on a perfect course for Ireland, some 30 miles ahead. I hope he made it and makes his miraculous journey many times in the future.

So now we are sitting outside the bars in Baltimore in the bright sunshine. Mr Grib is still dealing us Northerlies for the forseeable future, but with beautiful harbours every few miles from now on we can cope with that.

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