Headed for La Rochelle - 39°42.5’ N; 21°1.3 W

We are 1 1/2 days out of Ponta Delgada and are well on our way to

La Rochelle, some 1,000 miles away. Mora and JM arrived on Tuesday

evening from Horta by plane. Kerry and I had an appointment to get

tested again for Covid 19 on Wednesday morning early but when we arrived

at the testing site, they did not have our appointments. No problem,

we a€™re leaving anyways! A shopping list was assembled quickly and JM,

Mora and Kerry did a massive shopping run very efficiently, so

efficiently, that they were back just after I returned from collecting

stamps in our exit papers. One has to get the marina office, the police

and the coast guard all to bless that we can leave these islands. The

coast guard desk was not occupied but the police explained that that was

their problem, not ours!

Massive shopping run in progress!

So we cast off to go the fuel dock by early afternoon after a quick

lunch. Initially, the dock was occupied by one of the whale watching

boats but that only took 1/2 hour wait. When we were docked at the fuel

dock, however, we were told they were now out of diesel and it would

take 1-2 hours for the fuel truck to arrive and fill the tanks back up.

Bummer. We were getting close to the closure time for the fuel dock

on top of that so some pessimists thought we would not get away until

the next day! Well, we got lucky and the truck arrived as advertised

and we were on our way a few minutes later.

Sailing down the leeward side of Sao Miguel was a bit of a challenge

requiring some motor assistance but once around the Eastern tip, Ponta

Madrugada, the breeze filled in and we were on our way. Unfortunately,

we could not lay our course to La Rochelle of 67 degrees so off we went

towards Lisbon.

Last sights of Sao Miguel

It was also raining off and on all night and it was

pitch dark. Yesterday mid-day, both the GFS and ICON models recommended

a tack to the North for about 2 hours. We were hesitating to follow

that recommendation since it would take us almost away from La Rochelle

toward Greenland. The wind was also shifting by 30 degrees with every

rain squall that would go through so it was difficult to decide whether

we actually were hitting the forecast header (shift to the East). But

when the sky cleared and the wind shifted further to the East by 15

degrees, we decided this was the header and went for it. Soon enough

we hit the forecast header (shift to the North) on the other tack so we

could tack back. We were rewarded by 20 degrees better wind direction

than we had had and could now lay La Rochelle more or less! Soon we

could free the sheets and Kincsem picked up speed toward our

destination. Only 7 days to go!

Last night, our second at sea, finally saw the moon come out between

rain squalls and the sailing was magical. We are running 2 hour watches

at night, which with 4 people means 2 hours on and 6 hours off. So

thereÁ¢Â€Â™s no shortage of sleep and the boat moves nicely in 10-15 knots

from 40-50 degrees apparent. Pretty ideal conditions!

We just saw a group of some 20 young dolphins. They played with Kincsem

for several minutes before being on their way to the next entertainment



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