Antipole cruises

Fitting out, a sales weekend and a first proper sail

We have been back for ten days now.   The Portsmouth Sailing Club pontoon is certainly convenient – we can park the car alongside and it is but a short drive to the house and Tony’s workshop.  At low tide we are deep down and surrounded on three sides by steel dock sides in what feels like a coffin.   It is also a fish dock, the water is filthy, it smells and has been named by Stephen as Dead Fish Alley.  At high tide it is much more pleasant: we are up at street level, the air is fresher and we can chat with people on the dockside.  We are dividing our time between jobs on the boat and the convenience of being at home and having an internet connection for ordering bits and pieces.  Each night we return to the boat to sleep on board out of security concerns.

Most of the time has been spent installing conduits and threading cables.  We had nine cables to pull down from the stern arch, some of them very thick, and this morning we finally managed to get the radar cable all the way through to the navigation station.  We have also managed to get the radar dome fixed atop its tower and bolted to the top of the arch.  Hopefully it just needs connecting up now.

For the weekend we motored over to Gosport Marina, where there was a gathering of Ovni boats: three 395s, each a different configuration below decks, and a larger 445.  This was really a sales event for prospective purchasers to view the various options before making up their minds on their choices, but it was also an opportunity for us to examine each others’ boats and pick up tips from each other, and on Saturday evening we had a meal together at a local Indian restaurant. On Sunday the weather was foul – wet and windy.  We hardly emerged from the cabin while visitors occasionally arrived to view the boat. Because of the weather we stayed over on Sunday evening to await improvements on Monday.

On Monday afternoon the weather cleared up and we took Antipole out into the Solent for our first proper sail under our own steam, or better to say wind.  It was blowing force 4-6 and we had a magnificent close-hauled sail up to Cowes before we dropped the main and ran back to Portsmouth under just the genoa.  This was an opportunity to lift most of the plate and experience how easy the boat was to handle this way.  It made making tea much easier.

Then it was back into Dead Fish Alley for more fitting out.

That’s the news for now.  Love to all.

Ynskje & Tony

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