August / September 2020
August and September are important months for us as we plan to leave the safe harbour of Medemblik. We have been here since the beginning of July and grown to feel quite safe and secure in our location. Medemblik was our home for 3 years and returning to it has been a comfort to us as we know many people in the city and if there are any problems or difficulties with the boat, then we are at the boatyard, so anything can be fixed.
The last of our snags are fixed now and so we feel that the boat is ready for the next step of our adventure. However, we feel comfortably attached to Medemblik and are almost afraid to cut the umbilical cord and sail away under our own free will and take the consequences.
Fortunately, as a result of the many issues we have had, we are much more savvy than ever before and we know that we need to take the next steps.
Our plan for the rest of August is to sail off down the coast of the Netherlands to practice our sailing and mooring skills in the different harbours along the way towards Zeeland and the Belgium Coast. We plan to stop over in: IJmuiden, Scheveningen, Stellendam, Vlissingen and Breskens and then work our way back up to Amsterdam.
In this 2 week period we hope to get much more comfortable with the tides, tidal currents and the entry and exit of numerous big and small marinas.
We will be in Amsterdam Marina (behind the Amsterdam Railway Station) for the 8th September when Ingrid needs to make a short trip to Spain. I will be left to fend for myself for a few days (What shall I do while she is away?).
The day after her return, we will also be joined by Stuart, a temporary crew member who is “between boats” and wants to sail with a larger boat. We plan to sail along the Dutch, Belgium and French coast towards Cherbourg in Normandy and then head across the channel to the Isle of Wight – so an extra hand will be of value to us.
We know that currently we will need to quarantine in the UK on arrival and we will either do this on the boat or at my sister Kathy’s house in Cowes.
The objective of being in Cowes is for my mum’s birthday – 89 on the 24th September. We will probably only be able to wave over the back of the boat as we will still be in quarantine, but once our 2 weeks are up then we can visit properly.
We will probably remain around Cowes for the rest of September and make our plans to head further south for October or November as we look for a suitable weather window to allow our passage to Portugal’s Algarve.