With Tim and Sharine replaced by Liz, we made our way down towards the northern coast of France, aiming towards Lezardrieux. Lezardrieux is France’s answer to Dartmouth, with pink granite, cider and lots of bottles of Pouilley Fume. The sun came out for our crossing though despite some great SW winds early on we had to motor for the second half of the journey. Still, spending the next 24 hours drinking cider made up for the lack of the sail.
We anchored up at Creux harbour and as the sun went down Tim and I nipped ashore for a quick exploration and then back again to spend an evening of getting drunk whilst at anchor. We explored intellectual topics – just how fishy is fish from the north sea – and looked at the stars.
What didn’t help, however, was the autohelm playing havoc with the steering. It kept locking up! It was starting to get so bad that it was taking over the steeting of Barnacle Bill, often pointing us in the direction of immediate danger. As we approached the south of Sark, heading towards an eastern cardinal warning us of very shallow water, we decided to take drastic action.
A rather amusing incident occurred today. Due to an administrative cock up with the marina the English power-boat users next to us had been directed to someone else’s berth. That someone else was a rather snotty-nosed Belgian couple in a very expensive yacht who decided to turn up later that morning.
Jon had spent much time explaining the basics of passage planning. We had sat down each evening to plan our route for the next day. In Portsmouth we had to decide where we were planning to head to next and we debated two options: either head west towards Devon and Cornwall in the south west of the UK, or sail due south towards Cherbourg.
I started the morning off hunting for a fishing line. The local fishing shop was closed (I thought fishermen got up early) so I hung around the fisherman’s pontoon, looking like I was after a different type of cruise. A bloke walked past in wellies, arms loaded with tats – gotta be a fisherman, I thought – so I asked him if he could help. Sure enough he was about to head out to sea for a day’s work so I wandered down to his boat with him, chatting skate and whiting.