Cruise 2017 Adventure

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May 18th, 2020
This year the Bahamas, prior to Corona, was a time of reflection out of which we have decided to sell our lovely Pearl of Penzance. As with all these things there were many factors but the driver is changing family circumstances.

The Pacific is now one step too far and if we are unable to explore that far then we dont need an expedition boat like Pearl. We have had the most amazing two and a half years and will never stop cruising. It just has to adapt and so we will downsize and explore Europe on a seasonal basis.

As such we plan on returning to Europe via Nova Scotia and the Azores for the end of the year. In the meantime, we will happily accept an offer if it comes along.

Please spread the news and if anyone is interested in this wonderful boat which is in excellent condition and kitted out to sail anywhere in the world please send me an email -
May 18th, 2020
VE Day
We always put up our huge Union Jack on VE day (zoom in for perspective) and this year was all the more poignant for it was the 75th year. We celebrated with a huge fire, BBQ and toast to those that sacrificed so much for all of us. What an amazing generation they were.
May 18th, 2020
All our bird boxes have been taken and fledging has already begun - this little fella needed a bit of help and I am pleased to report that it all turned out well for him. This year has brought more woodpecker than I have ever seen and they are hammering away at the bird boxes to feed on the babies. So far the boxes have held up but some are looking very battle weary. Next year we will have to put chicken wire around the boxes for protection.
May 18th, 2020
Fred Flintstone
One of the symptoms of Corona is that the supply chain for spares has been effected. One of the cutting deck wheels on my mower gave up the ghost and with the grass growing like mad I needed a solution. Thoughts of good old Fred Flintstone inspired this oak wheel which looks like it will last forever.
May 18th, 2020
Blue Bells
Its amazing to think that we have been back in Cornwall for seven weeks for it seems to have passed in the blink of an eye. This is partly due to the fact that we have been working away at a job list that has been neglected due to being away sailing. Everything from clearing tree's overhanging the lane to replacing the guttering on the barn has been signed off.

There's still lots more to do so there is no chance of time dragging. One of the jobs has been to strim the paths in the woods and as you can see the blue bells are drifting along nicely. We planted 500 English Blue Bells all over the woods in random groups of five bulbs and its this year that they seem to have come into their own. The hope is that they continue to drift into large areas for we love them.
April 3rd, 2020
April 1st, 2020
April 1st, 2020
Apologies for the delay in updating the blog but it has been a mad period of dawn to dusk effort to stay ahead of the coronavirus curve.

Pleased to report that prior to sitting down to write this I lit the fire and made Tracey a well-earned morning cuppa in bed. Yes, we made it to Cornwall, just, and we are so pleased to have done so for if there is anywhere to sit out this viral chaos its in our isolated woods. We are close to family and with spring in the air there is lots of life and plenty to keep us occupied. Its also nice, after eight months on the water, to be in one place. Life is all about change and in this instance, change for us is to be rooted for a bit.

From Georgetown we pushed hard for Chesapeake going offshore when the wind was favorable and diving into the ICW when it fought us. As we clawed our way north so the temperature dropped and we found ourselves in full thermals, hats, gloves and very grateful for Pearls wonderful heating system when we retired below for the night.

The day before passing through Norfolk we felt confident enough to book our flights and chose to go with BA, our national carrier, thinking that with the governments encouragement they are more likely to remain in service. Looking at the pattern of cancelations it seemed that they were favoring Wednesday and Saturday night flights and plumbed Saturday.

After some epic days we arrived in Herrington Harbour North Marina on Tuesday and slept like the dead until 05.00hrs. Our regimen was to get as many hours work on Pearl as we possibly could before our flight. Looking for weak links in our tenuous chain home we booked a hire car on Wednesday so as to maintain autonomy. The hire car company shut down two hours after I picked it up! We bought gels, foraged for masks and went into our winterizing routine for Pearl; Full engine service, pickled the water-maker, stripped the headsails and give her a three day deep clean to the point of being able to eat out of the bilges.

With things going into lockdown we left early for the airport to find the roads empty. Five hours early and the check in lady said good move for the flight was well over sold. As we waited in the departure lounge State borders were starting to close. I cashed in some air miles and upgraded to Premier Economy so we had a double seat with no one beside us. The flight was empty, food came in a bag, no alcohol. As we echoed our way through empty airports we reflected that the risk of infection was minimal, less than shopping for food in the supermarket.

A hire car to Cornwall kept us out of London, we stripped, changed and popped our flight clothes into a bin bag before wiping down the car and climbing in. It felt akin to NBC training during my time in the Royal Marines. Eliot and a good friend had bought a weeks worth of food each and so we were able to shut the gate to our woods and are now hunkered down to run the clock out and see if we have caught the virus.

An email has just popped up as I write to say that Pearl was lifted yesterday morning - at lunchtime the Governor put Maryland into full lockdown. The final piece of the jigsaw is placed just as the wave breaks. We're so glad we managed to ride it all the way home as one by one the lights turned out in our wake.
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