December 30 – January 20 2020; 3767 nm and 671 days after departure from La Rochelle.
Yes! We’re just about to leave. We’re so excited. Wednesday (tomorrow) the 20th of January 2021 will be THE day. We’ll leave the Canary Islands, well even Europe to finally head off to the Caribbean. Our original plan to first visit the Cape Verdes was dumped due to Covid regulations. It was an on and off regarding where to travel to, Gambia, Suriname, French Guayana …, lots of countries were in our thoughts. In the end we decided to go to the Caribbean. We were lured by the beautiful anchorages, the nice weather perspective including crystal clear water and some friends waiting for us. In every country one has to go through lots of paperwork to be allowed to enter the country. I mean apart from the “normal” procedure. To enter Grenada we need a negative PCR test before leaving Las Palmas. We’ll be proximately 3 weeks on the big ocean. I doubt that we will have the opportunity to stop at a nice bar to have some drinks and chats in the middle of the Atlantic. That would be great but not very likely, would it? So the possibility of seeing humans is very low. Still, the government of Grenada (and other countries) makes us control our temperature every day and wants us to record it to be absolutely sure that we are healthy when we arrive. They want much more information but that was the funniest to me…😉 At least it feels as they do look after us. When we arrive we have to do another Covid test – of course!
I just got the email which said:
Date of analysis: 18/01/2021
Reference: xxxxxxxx Petitioner: JUAN CORRAL LOPEZ COL 353503346
PCR CORONAVIRUS ARN SARS-COV-2 NEGATIVO Negativo/Negative
Método/Method: RT-PCR-Real Time o RT-PCR Array
Yippeeee, now we’re officially allowed to leave!
Wow, the last 3 weeks were very busy. And before having the kids around omg I can tell you, we were sooooo happy when they left. Having kids around for almost 3 weeks who can stand this???
Of course we enjoyed having the kids with us and especially spending Christmas together! But as soon as they left we really had to work on our list to get ready for our first crossing. Doesn’t it sound great? CROSSING. I can tell you we are very excited😁! Ok, we managed to get Altimate ready roughly 10 days ago and we wanted to leave. The trouble was that my sewing machine which I ordered in China did not yet arrive. It was supposed to arrive beginning of January. The information we had, told us the package was already in Las Palmas but nothing happened. El Capitano checked Correos customs but they told us they don’t do UPS. So my dear friend Mary (thank you so much my dear) was so kind to get in contact with UPS Spain and magically after her call, there was movement in the shipping procedure. We got several information, stupid ones like – delayed delivery due to bad weather- and normal ones like – being in transit. Anyhow long story short it arrived Friday afternoon. That was awesome because now we could start with our last preparations. Organising the covid test, buying perishable food, cleaning the boat, washing etc. And now we are ready!
The only sad thing is that we’re not allowed to have a little goodbye gathering. That would have been nice to properly say goodbye to all the nice people we met and became friends with. Meanwhile Gran Canary is on level Red, which means curfew from 10pm to 6am and no visitors at all. Like always leaving comes with mixed feelings. Hopefully we will see our new friends again somewhere in the big wide world.
I promise a longer blog entry send from the other side of the Atlantic. Stay all healthy!
PS: We suppose you know that you can track our progress on https://cms.winlink.org:444/maps/positionreports.aspx?callsign=kg5vsg .
The red dot shows the last position reported.