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Sailing is a fun experience, and cruising around the islands on one's own schedule is enjoyable almost all of the time. Unfortunately, when one is on a schedule and the weather doesn't cooperate it can be quite a drudge. Yesterday was a good example, where I wanted to head to Guadeloupe in order to arrive in time to join some friends flying into there in a couple of day - and I couldn't head there because the winds were unfavourable so I detoured to the closest alternative at Nevis. I left at sunrise and as soon as I'd rounded the southern tip of the island I realized that today's winds were even worse than the yesterday's! In order to get to Guadeloupe I'd have to head directly into the wind. Since I can't get closer than about 40° to the wind this meant that my distance of 68nm was almost double that; assuming that the wind remained constant in both speed and direction. Since the wind rarely is that cooperative I knew I was in for a long day. At around noon I realized that nothing was going my way so I changed plans and decided to sail to Antigua and arrive there before sunset and then head south to Guadeloupe the following day.
The wind direction was bad but the 15 knots of breeze helped me sail quickly in the wrong direction, until the wind shifted and became perfect for Antigua. While the direction was great the wind dropped and I was only doing about 4 knots which meant that I would get there until Christmas next year, so I had to turn on the engine and motorsail for a while. The final 12 miles to Falmouth harbour were dead upwind (after a wind shift!) so I had to motor and I made it to the anchorage at about 17:30.
If I hadn't had a scheduled meeting 2 days hence I would have chosen a better alternative, such as anchoring at Montserrat and getting a tour of the island. Oh well, c'est la vie (which happens to be the logo of the T-shirt that I'm wearing at the moment and which I got as a present from Sascha, who I'll be picking up in Guadeloupe in 2 days).
I broke out a frozen steak this afternoon and am going to enjoy a simple albeit calorific meal of Steak and Potatoes tonight. I'm going to fire up the PC to watch a Monty Python episode and call it an early evening after today's lengthy and boring passage.