Well, the time back here in the UK has flown – I can’t believe that we fly back to Curacao on Tuesday to be reunited with Morphie.
The time at home this year didn’t turn out quite as expected…. Richard went back to work straight away on a short-term contract to top up the sailing kitty while I prepared for a social whirl of catching up with friends and family as well as domestic duties. Unfortunately very soon after arriving home I ended up in hospital having pretty major abdominal surgery – thankfully that is now behind me and I’m on the road to recovery, but it has seriously curtailed my fun!
Saying that, though, there have been some special sights, particularly the beautiful, moving, ceramic poppy installation at the Tower of London – with almost 900,000 poppies, each representing a life lost in the First World War.
We are now heavily into preparation mode – and piles of spares are starting to appear in corners of rooms. And, of course, we are socialising a lot too…. Phew – busy, busy, busy! The paperwork that needs to be done never fails to amaze me – all insurance related – but I’ve finished all that now so feeling a little more relaxed. And Richard has retired again so we’re working hard to bring it all together – no pink or blue jobs while we are at home you know! Some sadness though as we say goodbye to everyone…..
So we are now planning the route for next season. After putting Morphie back together again in Curacao we plan to run north east to the Virgin Islands, hopefully in time for Christmas. We have got help this time – it will be an upwind slog into wind and waves and I’m not really physically up to solo sailing yet, particularly if we hit heavy weather. So this is our insurance policy. I feel personally disappointed that we have an extra pair of hands on board – but I know it is the sensible thing to do. Anyway, we are looking forward to welcoming Blaine back on board and the reunion may well involve some partying!
We plan to hang around the British and US Virgin Islands until about the end of January – then we are going to head west towards Puerto Rico, Turks and Caicos, through the Bahamas and then across the Gulf Stream to the east coast of Florida. This should be a downwind sail most of the way – but of course the wind is always fickle! After arriving in Florida we hope to work our way down the coast to visit the Florida Keys – and then sail up the west coast leaving Morphie there while we come home. We haven’t sorted out the details yet though!
This season is all about exploring – both on land and on / under the sea – as this is all new territory once we leave the Virgins – so pretty excited. And Richard is hoping for some good fishing along the way too…. Yeah right!
So bye for now and see you next in the Caribbean!