We woke on. Monday 13th to find ten flying fish on deck. Their glorious ephemeral pale r blue had faded, and their extraordinary gossamer wings tinged with chestnut were but shrivelled fins at their sides. Nonetheless one could see in the lower elongated tail fin how they could dip that into the water to give an extra boost to keep flying, and the extra muscle shows as a dorsal bulge. Their large round eyes must be adapted to see in air as well as water, because thy quite clearly navigate the slopes of waves and guide themselves round crests. The less experienced flyers tend to get caught sideways by the wind and splash out rather too soon, but the big boys..the survivors, can keep flying a long, long way, just dipping the lower tail fin and giving a quick flick to keep flying, rising over the big waves using the lift to stay airborne. One wonders whether they revel in flight or whether it is a fearful flight,always. Anticipating the jaws of a hungry dolphin.
All day we sailed downwind I. force 6-7 towards Sal. Eventually I got fed up with tacking downwind and set a direct course, goose winging the Genoa. I produced lake soup and hrs dump,Inge for supper, and we watched the sun go down and the full moon rise while we ate. Just before sunset we had a visit from eight blunt headed short finned pilot whales, who gave us a quick once over before setting off to find their own supper. No frivolous dolphin playtime for them, mores the pity,
Finally at about eight pm we began too see evidence of the island of Sal. As th moon rose and illuminates the scene ahead it became evident that what we had thought of as a flat island was actually formed of several volcanic peaks. As we entered the channel between islands, and turned up to the wind we suddenly felt the full force of what we had been sailing info the last 5 days, and now inflatable wtR roared long at 9.5 knots.sc
Shortly afterward, at half past ten, with sails down we motored gingerly into Palmeira port, and found a spot to anchor amongst twenty other yachts. We toasted our 880 mile trip with a glas of rum, and reflected on the five and a half days it had taken to get here. Tomorrow we will deal with port clearance, and then meet Anne and Beccy et al.