Prepare for landing! – by Paulien

DATE:25-04  GMT:21.25  POS:50.09  N,004.44 W COG:55  SOG:3.5






SEA STATE:slight



Prepare for landing!

‘Prepare for landing !’ Richard, is coming out of his bunk, landing on my wooden sea chest. It is in the middle of the night. Woken up by Gerrit with little details of the old sea hero Michiel the Ruyter. ‘Time for your watch guys’. I like this little jokes in the night. There is moist, it is freezing and calm. I leave the two woollen blankets alone and get up for another night in paradise. For all the ladies, there is not much charming about it. I put on two woollen long underwear, woollen socks, two layers of long sleeves, two sweaters and my sailing trouser, already for 7 days now. Everybody wears the same, every day, at least that is how it looks. My heart is keeping me warm while the wind picks up and I enjoy the energy of this power. It is surfing at the helm. Back in Europe! Where the dark is super dark because the clouds are covering the moon. Where English moist is making everything small, silent and wet and the sea is turned into grey and green. It stays fresh but a little bit warmer while the sun is coming and gives us a relaxed morning and chance to get moist closes dry. The wind is between 10 and 25 knots, we douse and set some sails. I look up to the watch leaders who are climbing to the royal to furl the sail while the wind is picking up. There will become one day that I’m brave enough for that. While Europe is warming up during spring, everybody is handling the change of weather between 30 and 12 degrees his way, and humour is a warm clue. The cold makes me hungry. I’m eating like a tiger and I hope I don’t become as round as a rum barrel. Sometimes the cold makes me more hungry for a warm hug from a friend, more than I had in the tropics. All our homes are coming closer. Some become hungry for the future. ‘But!’ Lammert is saying out loud: ‘we are not home yet!’ His enthusiasm and joy in sailing gives luck as well. With a lot of energy he ‘pulls some ropes’ to use the wind optimal. Beautiful to see this profession.
During daytime I’m quite happy while I’m stitching in the middle of my ‘dress’ named ‘outer jib’. Ingo is pumping the bilges to stay warm and to keep us floating, Ranje Louise is trying to find warm spots between the galley and her bunk. Rianne is making hot chocolate. Lenneke just finished her year in the sailing school Enkhuizen so she walks around with pen and papers. In the middle of the night, Remi explains about navigation and an interesting book about the working of the earth is available. Signe is learning from Ewan how to make a cleat out of wood. Cleem is most of the time outside, sun or rain. If there is somebody that I see enjoying it, I would say it’s this seaman.
After a beautiful English morning fog we are preparing for landing. Fishing boats are around us, we gibe, it is around 66 meters deep at our spot in the English channel. The anchor chain is out, the dinghy gets fresh air. Our first steps in England will be in the small harbour of Fowey. I’m almost ready to say goodbye to Wolfgang, Richard, Lenneke and Jessica, and for sure ready to welcome the new trainees on the 1th of may in Falmouth. Prepare for a warm meeting in a warm pub with a cold beer! I heard Falmouth is preparing for a nice arrival, great. Let’s come together!


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