There is a young 21 year old French woman, Camile, who is about to set off single handed for La Rochelle. She arrived here over a month ago on a delivery yacht bound for Rio da Janeiro. While she was here she saw the little yacht up on the hard that had been struck by lightning

Alain's boat with it's lightening strike hole.

Alain’s boat with it’s lightening strike hole.

…..and was interested to know what was going to happen to it. The delivery skipper knew Alain, the owner, and contacted him.

After a quick conversation, Alain offered to sell the boat to Camille for €1! plus the outstanding marina fees and launching costs……so after finishing her delivery trip, she flew back here and has been readying the boat for her trip.
This week has seen the newly patched boat launched,

The launch of Yol and capitainne Camile.

The launch of Yol and capitainne Camile.

re rigged

Camile preparing to leave

Camile preparing to leave

and making her maiden voyage as captain.

And she's off!!

And she’s off!!

We have all been helping her and giving advice and any spares we think she might need.

On Tuesday evening we had a barbecue and everyone at anchor, moored and in the two marinas came to a farewell meal……a truly international evening with Danish, French, English, German and Belgian contingents.

Farewell barbecue for Camile.

Farewell barbecue for Camile.

Camile's farewell barbecue.

Camile’s farewell barbecue.

It is strange that we don’t have any Brazilians in the marina. The country is vast and many people come to the north for the winter sun, but there aren’t many Brazilian cruisers.

Having said that, we met a couple who were strolling down the pontoon on Tuesday afternoon. They are on holiday here in João Pessoa. Irvino has been sailing since he was a boy and has crewed on big boats. His wife, Fabiana, has started to sail in the last year and it was their dream to have a big catamaran in ten years time …… until we asked them onboard. Now they want a monohull in five years time!!!

Ervino, Fabiana et Moi.

Ervino, Fabiana et Moi.

They came by on Wednesday evening to ask us out for a meal with them……..unfortunately we had planned to entertain Camile and the French family with the two children for dinner, but undeterred they asked us for Thursday evening, which we gladly accepted. It is great to get to know Brazilians…..it’s so easy to just socialise with European Yotties and not really get to know the countries we’re visiting and their people. Having said that, we had a lovely evening aboard Moonstone on Friday and relived the music of our youth with Claire and Allan over a delicious lasagne and wine.

Dinner aboard 'Moonstone' with Claire and Allan

Dinner aboard ‘Moonstone’ with Claire and Allan.

 

Saturday …….. another afternoon at the Sabadinho concert in the square and another hazy evening for Marcus!

On Sunday we welcomed Lito and his family aboard……..Marcus had done such a good job of making sure they arrived at the right time, (because if they arrived at Brazilian time 9.30,(11 ish) we would miss the tide and not be able to go out) they arrived at 8.45!!…….. They were clearly keen not to miss the boat.
Lito brought his son and his sister along with her 19 year old son, his wife and baby, and her two youngest children, who were 9 and 10. Our resident interpreter, Vincent also came with Vané.

Lito and his crew sailing up the river. Lito's son at the helm.

Lito and his crew sailing up the river. Lito’s son at the helm.

Aboard and at home.

Aboard and at home.

Lito's niece and great-niece. Beautiful children.

Lito’s niece and great-niece. Beautiful children.

Victor, Airam, mother and baby.

Victor, Naira, mother and baby.

We had a great day and they were all very excited to be sailing. When we got back and safely moored up in the marina, we fed everyone and then spent the afternoon on the boat or at the pool. Copious amounts of canned drinks were consumed and the time sped past.

When it came to the time for the family to go home, Lito’s uncle arrived in his car to pick them all up. It was a bit like the old elephant joke…….
Q. How do you get four elephants in a mini?
A. Two in the front and two in the back.
In this case it was……..
Q. How do you get 9 of Lito’s family into a small fiat?
A. Seven in the back and two in the front!!

After having had a very sociable few days we’ve been taking it easy and catching up with a few jobs. We have taken delivery of our security grills and have bought a 12v car alarm and orange flashing light to go with them, so now we should be able to lock ourselves in at night, without suffocating, and from the safety of the cabin will be able to set off the alarm.
Marcus has spent the afternoon fixing the siren into the defunct hole in the instrument panel that housed an old GPS. It’s so loud that when we tested it, it hurt!
Any foolhardy thief will think twice about staying aboard for long and it should get the attention of fellow Yotties in a peaceful anchorage! The light will let our neighbours pinpoint us, so they know who to complain to about the din in the morning. With all this in place, we will now never have to use it!

Our intrepid single handed sailor, Camile, has run into some sort of problem 200nm into her journey and has turned back for Cabedelo. She should be withing 40 miles by the morning and we are planning to sail out to meet her and tow her in if need be.
Close to the coast the current runs north at a faster rate and the wind moves further into the south, so she will have to do a lot of tacking to try and make it back here without a motor. We think she’ll be exhausted and will welcome being taken in tow. We’re watching her progress on the computer and will mount our rescue expedition with a fellow French yachtsman, if and when we think she might be struggling too much………..watch this space for the next update!

 

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