One Year On

Well, we have completed 12 months in our new life.  What a year it has been!  Having set sail from Bosham on 22 May we have travelled almost 7,000 miles (all of it at an average of 5mph); crossed an ocean; been to 9 or 10 different countries, met countless wonderful people; and seen some fantastic sights.

It has not all been plain sailing, obviously.  I got off the boat in Santander and decided enough was enough only to get back on later that day feeling much better having realised that getting off was an option!   The weather for most of France and Spain was foul.   The food in all of Spain was (disappointingly) foul!  And 42’ is not enough space for 2 people to live full time!!

The things we have missed have been surprisingly few.  Mainly seeing our friends and family regularly (especially little Oli, 3 year old Grandson and my 85 year old Mum) who have both changed so much in 12 months.  Skype etc have not lived up to our hopes.  And wifi has been our biggest frustration!!!

Foodwise there is nothing we miss, mainly because I stocked up with tea bags and shortbread biscuits (and made it a rule that any friends visiting could only board if they produced one or the other).  But also in this globalised world we live in everything is readily available everywhere.  We have virtually given up cooking on board now because a) It’s too hot  b) meals out are/can be really cheap.

We haven’t missed TV, but have missed the radio.  We have a hard drive with 320 films on that our friend Des gave us and that satisfies our ‘nights in’ but the ipod, even with 1760 songs on it, has become repititous. For downloading new songs see wifi comment above!

We do read a lot and have got through loads of books (and Kindles – 2 have died on us!!)  Most marinas run a book swap scheme.  I need to explain to Mike – again – what ‘swap’ means so that I can get rid of the library of paperbacks we have acquired!  Our Backgammon tournament has continued throughout even though I still haven’t worked out how Mike is cheating!!  (He is currently 51 points ahead!)  We have played the occasional game of scrabble and Yatzee is good fun when there are others on board.

We haven’t swum as much as I expected mainly because I keep getting ear infections!  Also, swimming in marinas or bays where there are a lot of boats is not good.

As far as highlights we would say:

Benedot River – anchoring outside the Chateau

Porto – we had a lovely weekend break there last July

Algarve – 1st taste of really hot weather and I passed my Yachtmaster. 

Las Palmas – preparing for the Crossing was exhilarating, exhausting and very, very, sociable!

THE CROSSING!   Thanks again to Kathy and Sally, who not only made it possible by coming with us, but made it more fun.

St Lucia – ditto Las Palmas plus Xmas!!!

Antigua – re-living memories

Tobago Cays – natural beauty and marine life

Last and definitely not least Grenada.

We have fallen in love with it here. Partly because the Island is beautiful, lush and has diverse landscapes from mountians, waterfalls, rainforest and beaches. Partly because the local people are so friendly and welcoming.  And also because we have made so many friends here and the social life is fab!  We are learning Tai Chi; Yoga; playing Mexican dominos –mmm OK; weekly hash (hikes); we have joined the University Club and have full use of facilities –beach/pool etc; dinghy concerts; then there are the evenings!!!  Every night there is something going on.  So that brings us to our next adventure.

­What Next

We have decided that we want to live in Grenada for a while and immerse ourselves in the island way of life.  But we don’t want to do it living on a boat – we want space, large bed, nice shower room, flushing toilets; kitchen where at least one cat can be swung with ease etc, so we are going to look get a long term rental (at least 12 months) and see how it goes.

As far as Blue Dolphin is concerned, we will have her taken back to the U.K in June to be sold.  (We are sad but we cannot afford the luxury of having her sitting in the bay doing nothing much).  We are not ‘swallowing the anchor’ completely though (sailor speak for giving up sailing).  We will either buy a smaller boat for pottering around in and/or charter when we feel the need to get back out on the sea. 

We will continue with the blog until no one is reading it anymore! 

Love to all

Carol & Mike xx



14 thoughts on “One Year On

  1. Wow an amazing story /turn of events. So lovely to hear you have found such s beautiful place to be do keep blogging though!!!

  2. Wow lots of memories and new adventure coming up in Grenada. Can’t believe the boat is going! I suppose you have sailed the ultimate sail so there’s nothing else to do. We will enjoy our holiday in Grenada next year 😆. Have read each and every blog and look forward to them. So if you stop this one you will have to send me a personal one! Maybe once you have a base Skype will be more available. Do they have broadband in Grenada??. Take care. Love to you both. D & A xxxxx

  3. So please you are both enjoying yourselves and beautiful Grenada but can’t believe you plan to sell Blue Dolphin. Hope you find another boat to fall in live with soon! Take care. Sally

  4. What an incredibly brave decision to sell Blue Dolphin but frankly I am not surprised that you can’t contemplate living together in a 42′ boat 24/7 for another year!

    I hope the internet is better there and you can catch up with all things musical! And are you sure Mike is cheating and it’s not because he’s just better at backgammon than you are ? (Ooooo how very dare I even suggest that?!!)

    If we get the chance, I would dearly love to get to Grenada to see your new pad. Grenada sounds a fab place and I want to see pictures of the new place when you get settled. Ann x

    • Yes, how very dare you! He can’t possibly be a better player than me – can he? Would be lovely to see you over here!

      P.s Cliff and/or Jez wouldnt fancy being part of the delivery crew I suppose? Leaving Grenada 22/23 June approx 30 days to u.k 🙂

  5. What a year! (was it really a year ago…?). Glad you’re both well, and still on speaking terms. We’ve been following your tale, with only partly envious eyes. Good luck with the next phase!

  6. OMG!!!! Cant believe you are selling BD
    Sorry for slow response but we moved last week and then I went straight off to camp in a muddy field AKA the Hay Festival. Then this morning Pete and I flew out to Porto (sadly no time to explore) then coached into Pontevedra for his Duathlon World Championships this weekend! Check his progress via Twitter @Hollos49

    Look forward to seeing you in June (in Chester?) and a return visit to Grenada next year!

    Cliff, Ann and I (and hopefully Jezz) sailing out of Hamble in mid June – first sail since St Lucia!

    Lots of love

    Kathy & Pete xxxxxx

  7. Hi Carol & Mike. Like everyone else We’re really stunned by the news that BD is to go, after all the trials and tribulations of getting her ready for your great adventure. We understood from Carol T that you’re enjoying Grenada and as we know ourselves it’s a great island and I’m sure you would be happy there if you settled. Hopefully we can get to meet up when you’re back in the UK this summer. Love to you both. Liz & Malcolm

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