Following an overnight stop anchored 300 metres off the beach to avoid the swells at Ponta da Cruz on Santa Lucia , we motor-sailed to Mindelo marina.
The tidal stream between the islands runs hard. In this case three knots against us, which slowed our progress to just three knots towards the north of Sao Vicente. We did try switching off the engine for a while, but quickly gave that up when we started going backwards. At the north of the island, the tide gave up its grip, and we were able to get up to seven knots all the way to Mindelo arriving at the fuel dock at 1600. We then gained a good spot on C-pontoon, parked up Mediterranean mooring style with the back of the boat facing land, which makes it easy to get on and off Lady Jane. We have already witnessed people plopping into the water when getting off their forward-parked boats. And this is not the water you want to plop into.
The reason we left Mindelo last week was to make way for the ARC Plus boats. These ARC guys are doing a similar thing to us (The Canaries to Cape Verde, then to the Caribbean) but are doing it in higher numbers. And the ARC has more of an emphasis on performance sailing, with start times staggered according to the class of boats, and a race start sequence run for each class.
Racing starts are not something that floats our boat. We determine our start time by when we get out of bed.
We will get some non-essential work done while here. The fridge and freezer could do with perking up a bit and we would like to treat Lady Jane with a hull scrub and propeller clean. But these are not essential – we are ready to go without these things.
The social side of things here is full on. A liver-toughening event is on most nights. And last night we went all-in with dinner, drinks, and dancing at Simpatico, an Irish sports bar. The carnival dancers sparked up the entertainment. These girls can fire their hips faster than a light-calibre machine gun. By comparison, I move like a sloth.