Tuesday, October 16, 2012

Dumpling voyage postponed


Nick Cole’s dream of sailing off into the Atlantic on Dumpling is in limbo – at least for the time being.
He took extended leave from his work as a dentist in the UK to work solidly on Dumpling for the past six months. But it has proved to be just too big a challenge.
The niggling things that still need to be done are relatively small but there are too many of them and time has run out. To make things worse, deep depressions are developing over the Atlantic. Favourable northerly breezes between here and Madeira have changed into adverse southerly winds. Storms are brewing.
“When I took her for a test sail in perfect conditions, I felt no joy because I found so many things not working. I feel so physically and mentally drained that if I went now, it would not be with relish. I want to go with gusto.
“If I was 39 again, I would not hesitate to deal with the remaining problems as I sailed. But this time I don't want, for example, to find myself in the path of a fast moving fishing boat and no navigation lights due to a flat battery as happened before. No, I want Dumpling to be properly seaworthy.
 So Nick has put off his planned voyage until next spring. He is arranging to have the boat lifted out of the water to spend the winter tucked up on the dockside in the fishermen’s harbour at Portimão.
The postponement is obviously a big disappointment - but in no way is Nick abandoning his dream. 

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