9 April 2017 - Fairtransport
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.
as every day the tide is changing, our course over ground is changing, the side where the sails are set is changing, the meals as well. Although something never changed since we left Amsterdam; the motivation expressed from all buddies on board. Yes, it is hard not to sleep well because of the boat bouncing […]
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So here we are, back in Amsterdam, with an empty cargo hold, preparing for the next trip. Six months have passed since we first left Den Helder on that grey November day. I still remember the steady sound of the tugboat, like a frantic clock rushing us. Soon the time would not matter that much, […]