October 30, 2012
Man she's a bitch
Not going to soften the language or edit my grammar...she was what she was, a mean bitch! I could hear her scream, "You want to call yourself Salty, you have to earn that title!!!" She slammed into us from every different direction, she let us believe things would be good and waited until our guard was down and hit us hard. We must of looked to comfortable in our dry cockpit after one of her blows, so she decided it was time to kick it up a further notch. Wet and salty, pruned hands, freezing cold....she still wasn't happy. Time to knock the shit out of Salty Ginger with confused steep short seas. Graham wasn't going to go down without a fight, so he went head to head with that bitch. He took the boat off auto pilot and wasn't going to let Salty take on this ocean on her own. He navigated the crazy waves trying to avoid the nasty short steep ones which would cause a huge massive SLAM, BAM, CRASH on SG. Of course this made her only angrier....what have you got now I screamed in my head...she delivered....25 to 30 knot winds right on the nose and of course coming from the place we wanted to go. Now we were trying to do wide tacks with nasty seas to get to our destination. We only had 17 miles to go but she was going to make them the longest 17 hours. I don't know what got into her. She seemed so happy when we left. Full sails up and into the darkness we went. I have to wonder if my comment as we sailed happily away brought this on. I said, "I think I need more practice sailing Salty Ginger before we head out on the crossing." The words were ringing in my ears for those last 17 miles as we tacked and tacked. "You want practice, than practice you shall have!"
ok....I joke....40 hours with little sleep makes me a little silly. We finally made that 17 miles and fought a good fight. We headed up the river at Lagos, Portugal with our Canadian flag proudly flapping in the wind behind us. People waved from the sides of the river. A fishing boat passed us with friendly smiles and thumbs up. We came up alongside the reception pontoon like we actually knew what we were doing. A friendly cruising Canadian was standing at the dock. Things were definitely looking up and I so hate to say this but that feeling of overcoming a really awful situation and persevering and succeeding is such a rush. Truly addicting. We were all riding the high for a while.
Once we had checked in at the reception pontoon the marina opens this draw bridge and you motor through to the actual marina. It was very cool. The Salty Ginger crew is getting pretty good at docking now (I so hope I haven't just jinxed it). Graham maneuvered the boat like a pro and we tied off with no issues. We looked up and around us and OMG....we had found the CRUISERS!!! Every boat around us is an open ocean cruiser....raymarines, wind generators, dinghies, ssb antennas! We were all so happy and it wasn't long before we had already met two more boats of cruisers. Can't wait to have folks over for drinks. Tonight though we are to exhausted after the sail or should I say fight...It took all our energy just to rinse off all the salt from Salty and then crew, make dinner, tidy up a bit, watch our show, nip of wine and out for the night.
I would end here but I it would be wrong not to share with you all what just happened. Graham yelled out from on deck "FIRE, grab the fire extinguisher the boat across from us is on fire!" I jumped up on deck with fire extinguisher in hand. (keep in mind that it is early morning and very calm and quiet out). I see the smoke coming out of the side of the boat that Graham is running up to. I smell what smells like an electrical fire or burning rubber. Graham is pounding on the boat to see if anyone is inside. I run up to him and hand him the extinguisher. No one is coming up from below, so I tell Graham jump on board. Cruisers on other boats are popping out and wondering what is going on. Graham is yelling, "smoke." Finally he is on board and looking below when a nice looking older woman pops her head up and unzips the cockpit enclosure....She is smiling and this is when I realize....their boat is not on fire. She is laughing now and tells us that when they turn on their heater it smokes quite a bit. Other cruisers are now yelling over, "Just burnt toast?"....lol...we let them know that there is no fire...just over helpful Canadians! We really just wanted to make sure that everyone here knew that....."THE PERRY's" had arrived.