Tres Hombres weblog: Like a slammed door the east wind welcomes us back in Europe

Tres Hombres weblog: Like a slammed door the east wind welcomes us back in Europe

Like a slammed door the east wind welcomes us back in Europe. The pressure is high, almost unbearable, the huge systems with 1038 mb moving back and forth above Ireland, supplying us with fresh air, directly from the North pole.  This is what can happen when some people keep saying that the captain can also control the wind…onto our 300 miles to go, we got another 700… 
At least, after 4-5 grey days the sun came out and all hands are happy to scrape and paint and oil and whip and splice and knot and mend and serve and tar and saw and chip away hard to get her into the right shape for home. But also to read and talk and argue and snack and sometimes just enjoy the warming sun rays, as just right now in the afternoon watch.

In this moment a ship passed our bows, whereon I pointed and called out to the crew: look, a ship just like ours! They came and saw a 303m container vessel, but still, they are also carrying cargo. Hilde then said: They must have just as much crew as we have, isn’t that crazy. Yes, it certainly is. I mean, something in this relation is crazy, we are carrying 1 container, they 15.000.
You, Mister, sitting at the drawing desk and making lines, forming a miserable monster like this, you are crazy, or not? Or are we? Kim is a designer and makes formidable rum labels, Jeroen is an extraordinarily gifted inventor, Remi is a licensed mariner, steering the greatest cargo ship in the world close to the wind, Giuseppe is cooking fine and healthy meals with lowest budget in most basic conditions, Hilde converted from an office lady to able bodied seaman, learning first to caulk a ship in the winter, I am beeswaxing structural oak wood to keep it good for the next fifty years and so on….
So here nobody is crazy, so it must be you! Where all this trash, carried in unbelievable amounts, ends up is maybe the highest stage of human evolution presently, a fuckin webshop.
We won’t be on time for your orders at Amazon, mother nature knows why, keep in touch with her.

Captain Andreas Lackner

Tres Hombres weblog: Okee okee dan ik schrijf wel een weblog maar alleen omdat je jarig bent

Tres Hombres weblog: Okee okee dan ik schrijf wel een weblog maar alleen omdat je jarig bent

Okee okee okee dan ik schrijf wel een weblog maar alleen omdat je jarig bent. Het had zo kunnen zijn dat ik nu naast je op de bank zat. Maar we gaan nog naar Douarnenez en de wind zit niet mee.
Vandaag heb ik met Andreas de laatste stuurboord aanleg bolder vervangen, waarschijnlijk wel het laatste houtwerk van de reis. Vanaf Douarnenez ga ik mee in de nightwatch.
Ze willen een t-shirt maken met bijnamen en dan heet ik Miaumiau, omdat ik klink als een kat tijdens het kotsen.
De zin in land begint op te spelen, en vooral de zin in de drukke zomer die me staat te wachten.
Heb je al foto’s van Marcel gehad? Dan zet je de laptop op de stoel in de hoek waar ik altijd zit op je verjaardag, dan ben ik er toch nog een beetje bij. Een hele fijne verjaardag mam doe de groeten aan iedereen daar!

Bosun Jeroen

Tres Hombres blog: Did I sail across the ocean to return to this?

Tres Hombres blog: Did I sail across the ocean to return to this?

Wind wind, wind wind wind. It blows hard here, bending the azorien palms, and it’s sound effects- whistling stays, creaking mooring lines, hauling wind mills. It swipes over our safe haven island Fajal with an ocean gathered strength, and pulls on my nerves like a cello tuned by a butcher.

Such a fragile home we’ve got.  10 Months out of 12 it’s tossed around on the waves, half in the sea half in the sky. Yet in 5 months of sailing, soft or rough, land has been our only danger. The sea is my refuge. Does this make me a sailor?
Cast off the lines and let the world go to hell.

2 More weeks will bring a stop to a journey that seemed endless in time, or better said – the end of which I could not imagine.
So total is life at sea on an engineless sailing ship, engulfed in a nature beyond that which was meant for men.
So simple is my existence here – stay on the boat, feel the wind. And how do I go back to the social pollution of society?
On our ship every sound has a meaning, a reason and a reaction called for. The sails speak to you, telling ‘pull’ or ‘ease’ ; the wind says ‘brace’, ‘ set sails’ or ‘ douse’.
Visual and noise pollution in harbour and cities is overwhelming to me now. Did I sail across the ocean to return to this?
Have I changed and now must plunge into car exhausts church bells led screens and selfies once more?
Cast  away from sea to land.
God have mercy for those lost at sea, for they had to go out again, not to be lost on land.

 Second mate Shimra

Tres Hombres blog: Troubles to sleep in this four to five meters waves

Tres Hombres blog: Troubles to sleep in this four to five meters waves

DATE: 13-04-17 GMT : 0505 POS: 49-01.3 N, 018-47.6 W COG: Variable SOG: 0.1

The wind is starting to come down a little bit and the sailors can now hope to get dry a bit. It has been very wet and quite cold for us in the last two days and many had troubles to sleep in this four to five meters waves.
We are now entering a stationary high pressure area and we can expect to slow down a lot. At least we will have dry feet and be able to work on the boat a bit.

First mate Remi
____________________________________________________________________________________________________________________

Flaping in the center of a high pressure. Please send big greetings to all office and Nordlys crew-
Tell tramp his fleet is ready to sail from port.
Hope to see you all in Amsterdam.

Second mate Shimra and all

Tres Hombres Blog: It’s not that we are sailing happily from place to place

Tres Hombres Blog: It’s not that we are sailing happily from place to place

Acores and how we got there

Destiny wanted that the first whale we saw, we also hit. This frightening encounter in the midst of the Atlantic was first felt like rumbling over a sandbank, when every one rushed out, to see what’s happening. A thoroughly shaken and hurt sperm whale of about 12m with a big white scar on the back blows out a fountain of air and tries to orientate himself after what just had happened to him. I saw him diving away and hope our keel did not get further than his layer of fat…

The island of Flores then was the first rock we saw after a fast 17 days of sailing halfwind and it was Saturday so we decided to check out the weekend nightlife in Lajes das Flores which ended up in hardcore karaoke and close dancing in the Trancador…after a few very rocky days in the harbor and some magnificent impressions and meeting some fine people on this isolated island, Nuno threw off the lines and we sailed of to our destination Horta on Faial.

Paula, Norberto and Rita received us on the most beautiful way with food and wine, which we could share with our friendly competitor the Avontuur! Cornelius waited just for our arrival to embrace and chat a bit, before they set sail for Brixham. A great thing to see the family growing, despite all the beatings we receive from capitalism, bureucrazy, regulations for the use of oil and against ecology and other stupid shit created by lazy, ignorant live haters.

All islands are magnificent on this archipelago, they even have been more, before the cow inhabited these green, lush places, mostly covered in clouds. The cow needs food, so she feeds on great parts of the islands, which now look like Cornwall, nice green fields surrounded by stone walls, no bush, no tree. Then the cow grows, outside in any weather, but not for long, before she enters a container, alive, for her only and last voyage to Lisboa, where they have bigger slaughterhouses. Just a few days of motoring, almost all of them arrive alive…  Meat every day. There is also fish but meat is cheap, good for breakfast, lunch and dinner.

What they used to do on island traditionally was fishing. There is a sustainable way of doing that, you go out on your own, little boat and fish. When you have enough you relax, repair your nets, work around the house, make your wife happy and enjoy life on a beautiful island. You do not start a fabric, build more and bigger ships, start cheating with amounts of fish and where you get it from and export it to places where nobody knows about the Acores. There is too little of them and the population cannot recuperate. Slow and small, that’s how the concept works. We now found in the end a little company, consisting of a fisherman and his wife, which put a few tunas in cans, which are a real treat and have their price, so you cannot take many at a time but still have some in 100 years.
It’s not that we are sailing happily from place to place, knowing everything better and telling the locals how they should live, this is just information which comes out when you meet caring islanders and debating about their lives in beautiful isolation.

Pico was the third island. Totally different place again, even south and north part differ a lot. Currently they are recuperating many of the old vineyards which were abandoned after the great wave of emigration after the earthquakes and volcano eruptions on the islands last century. Pico is home of great wines and we got many bottles in our hold….

Now going east again into a wonderful sunset, hasta la vista, Acores and dear friends there, hope to see you again.

Captain Andreas

Tres Hombres blog: Short after sunrise we hit a sperm whale

Tres Hombres blog: Short after sunrise we hit a sperm whale

We are still making good progress, all sails up trying to keep our 200 miles a day so that we don’t get cought by the area of less winds that is coming behind us. The air pressure is rising again as we leave the influence of the low behind us and step into the Azores permanent high pressure system.

This morning short after sunrise we hit a sperm whale. The whole ship was shaken by the impact and the tip of the dolphin striker bend 90 degrees but we didn’t notice any further damage. We where sailing 10 knots and it was probably a matter of centimeters that we saved the head rig. Just after the impact we saw the giant mammal spin on itself to get upside up again and dive. It is sad that this is the only way we got to see a whale so far.

We hope to sight first land on Saturday morning around Flores. Looking forward to step on Faial again.

First mate, Remi

GENERAL SYNOPSIS: ON BOARD THE TRES HOMBRES

WIND DIR & SPD: Southerly, 20 knots

AIR TEMP: 20 C

AIR PRES: 1027 hPa

Tres Hombres blog: Op naar de laatste stop, Azoren.

Tres Hombres blog: Op naar de laatste stop, Azoren.

We zijn al vier maanden op zee, de hele wereld rond en nu weer op weg naar huis. In het begin zeeziekte, na anderhalve dag was het gelukkig over en sindsdien hebben we met volle teugen kunnen genieten.
De zee, de groep, vele dingen te leren, verre oorden zien en de wereld rond zeilen zijn allemaal onderdelen van deze reis. Vooral het aankomen met het schip en de eilanden verkennen zijn onderdelen hiervan. Ook de reacties van de lokale bevolking waren altijd leuk om te zien. De verschillende mensen met hun uiteenlopende karakters zorgden altijd voor veel plezier en gezelligheid.

Het was niet altijd makkelijk om, ‘s nachts tijdens de wachten, de ogen open te houden. Zelfs als het weer en de zee zwaar waren genoot men nog steeds en het brood werd nog steeds gebakken.
Aangezien het al maart is en daarmee de groente tijd is aangebroken, beginnen de boeren en mensen met groene vingers al wat naar huis te verlangen. Hopelijk is de overvaart naar de Azoren niet te lang. Zodat er nog tijd over is om daar te genieten.
In Amsterdam zal ik er zeker bij zijn als het schip aankomt. Dan zullen er nog veel verhalen, foto’s en herinneringen worden uitgewisseld.
Tot dan geniet ik nog steeds elke dag met volle teugen van mijn dagen op zee, zoals ik de hele reis heb gedaan.

Trainee Marcel Vissers

Tres Hombres blog: Our majesty herself is clipping along easily with often 10 knots

Tres Hombres blog: Our majesty herself is clipping along easily with often 10 knots

Our days become shorter, grey and colder. Strange, as we go out of the winter you would think, but coming from the eternal Caribbean warmth, the fast flying clouds and the fresh spray of the wave crests give our voyage a new face. The stories of the Papalagi reach their end, boots come out and get greased, the foxhole is wet, every standing thing on deck is salted down as bacalao, crew as well, already with rings under their eyes…
The sheets are tight in their position, nothing to get without handy-billy. Our majesty herself is clipping along easily with often 10 knots, all sail set, exactly on the great circle route to the Azores.
We will see how long the North Atlantic will allow us to keep this course, but maybe soon the barometer will choose a side and the shifting winds  will call us to the braces to keep our tamed, wild horse heading east.
The next stop, where we all are looking forward to, is the magic Archipelago dos Acores, 800 miles out of Portugal, where we expect the last part of the cargo for the continent, orange pekoe tea, grown on the vulcanic hills of Sao Miguel. And maybe this time we make it out of Peters bar and up the Pico….

Captain Andreas

Tres Hombres blog: A few thousand miles to go.

Tres Hombres blog: A few thousand miles to go.

DATE:13-03-2017   GMT:0044  POS:23 27 N,66 28 W   COG:15.1   SOG:3.3

Back north again,

Finally, after 2 weeks of waiting for the cargo and having a good time in the Dominican Republic, we’re out at sea again. Finally sailing again. Setting the sails and heading out for the open ocean, and that’s what we’re eventually all here for.
Also going back north, going back home, back to the cold. Leaving the warm Caribbean temperature and temperament behind us, it had to happen someday anyhow. Everyday a few degrees more north, while hopefully not losing too much on the thermometer. 
Luckely we don’t go straight home yet. The Azores is where we’re currently heading, the land of milk and honey if I may believe the stories. And even more lucky is, that we still have a few thousand miles to go before we get there. A few thousand miles we can still enjoy life at sea, something that’s hard to explain but you have to experience it.
I might go back to the Caribbean sometime, but that voyage won’t be by plane, but by ship under sail, like the one we’re on now, it must and will be. Because it starts to feel like it’s the only right way to go anywhere anyway.

Kind regards,

Trainee Robbert-Jan

PS to all fellow sailors out there, fair winds and following seas

GENERAL SYNOPSIS: ON BOARD THE TRES HOMBRES

WIND DIR & SPD: East 2-3

CLOUDS: 5

SEA STATE: 0

AIR PRES: 1021

Tres Hombres blog: The greatest expectations for the new cargo from the west

Tres Hombres blog: The greatest expectations for the new cargo from the west

On the road again…

Pun ki šipak, how the people in Skradin would say, is the fine ship Tres Hombres again, underway homebound on a rough Caribbean sea. Fully loaded with organic cacao for the Chocolatemakers in Amsterdam, Colombian coffee for Simon Levelt, molasses for Feinbrennerei Simon’s, great Bayan hot sauce, many other specialities from all the places we hit and for sure: precious rum from La Palma, Barbados, Marie Galante and the Dominican Republic, bound to be Tres Hombres limited editions for this year.

Our new trainees arrived soon after us in Boca Chica and so could spend 2 weeks of preparing the ship and loading the cargoes in a relaxed way, getting to know a bit of the local hospitality and the open hearted appearance of the Dominicans. Almost every evening the presidente was shared around on deck, many times with people not noted on the crewlist…also the beach at swimming distance on La Piedra was home of a good barbecue with conversations and acrobatics around the fire. A fine time we passed in Boca Chica, also thanks to the football shirts from our friend Andre from La Paz in Porto.

And the Portwine! Soon it made the round through the authorities that there is an amazing wine onboard of that pirate ship…but where from?
As we age our carefully selected Tres Hombres Rum in our own barrels during the voyage at sea, we also choose which barrels we use. This year, with the help of our friend and client Anton Mann, we could get a number of Port barrels, directly loaded in Porto and still with some Late Vintage Tawny Port inside! Just to keep the barrels wet, as you might know…what a fantastic surprise when it turned out to be the finest Portwine, approved now officially for sailors use.

After filling the barrels at Oliver & Oliver in Santo Domingo, they finally arrived the day before leaving. Rum aged for 18 years in their solera, given the final touch by a Cuban Masterblender, will now move restlessly for months in their wooden houses, where the Portwine penetrated the oak deeply and all the bags of cacao and coffee form an insulation around the barrels so the angels will not drink to much of it. The next surprise will follow the day we open these barrels again…I will let you know;-)

For the meantime you can wish us fair winds and following seas and wait with the greatest expectations for the new cargo from the west, sailing on a good ship with a fine crew,

all the best

Captain Andreas

Sustainable transport over sea. Tres Hombres, Nordlys, Ecoliner, Clippership, Noah, Fairtransport, Fairtrade, Logbook, shipping news.