The main reason for our quick stop in France is the marriage of my youth friends Eric and Alex in Hourtin, at the gates of the Médoc. We would like to spend a time with family and close friends of the South...
The Bay of Marseille and the Frioul Islands branch to find childhood friends, Jean-François and Madile who join us with their "Cinque" sailboat, a superb Tofinou. Dominique and Jean-Pierre we are surprised to come visit us from Saint Raphael. We spend together a superb weekend of reunion.
Then we agree with Port Camargue where we'll let Tao time to make a break in Bordeaux for the wedding. We arrive late afternoon in front of the Harbour and get wet beach - wind tie and flat seas. Tomorrow it will be time to decide the best shelter to let Tao a few days without supervision. But around midnight a little choppy rises... and five minutes later they are 45 knots of wind that sweep Bay. I go full speed starting engines... just in time to avoid running aground against the blade breeze! Indeed, Despite the 45 metres of chain by 5 meters of water, anchor plough bottom, but does not catch. First time in five years that one slip... An anchor of better quality is needed! An hour later the calm returns and we can continue our night.
Only one choice is necessary to let Tao safely... Put it to dock in the marina of Port Camargue. We can go quiet!
Christian and Sylvaine welcome us in their house in Bordeaux. The opportunity to celebrate the anniversary of Marco before leaving in Hourtin for marriage...
Two days of celebration and unforgettable reunion!
Photo with part of the crew for my first grande Traversée sailing between La Rochelle and the Azores... 31 years after! These are the same with which we did the tour de Corse in board sailing... or almost !
We spend great time with Daniel and Joelle (sailboat "Ocean Respect") who settled in a hut between Port Camargue and Montpellier before joining their sailboat that awaits in the Guatemala. They are the ones that had towed us during 15 days between Costa Rica and Panama when the Hibiscus engine was released to us. It creates links!
Nathalie's sister, Sylvie, and her husband Pascal come visit us. And Anny (sailboat "Philae") that installs in Sète just spend a rainy Sunday with us.
We also took advantage of this passage in France to prepare Tao for the next trip and add some safety equipment:
- 660 Watts of solar panels with MPPT regulator
- Controller batteries
- New anchor Spade from 30 kilos (deemed the best anchor of the market)
- AIS transponder to see and be seen cargo ships
- Electronic barometer
- Audit of the rig by a professional
- New moorings and tired rope replacement
- Replacing all the light bulbs with LEDs
- Replacement of gas pipe
- Nautical guides for the Mediterranean
- and... two with big reels fishing rods!
We are ready for departure to Greece where we hope that the winter will be mild...