After weeks of rain, the sky broke today with clear skies and warmer temperatures. With a few last minute issues to solve, we delayed our departure a bit but finally, at 13:00 we passed out our traditional ‘departure focaccia Genovese’ along with a glass of Procesco to our friends on shore who threw our ropes and we were off. Fog horns blasting from neighboring yachts, shouts of “Buon Vento!”, “Aguri!”, “Fantastico!” and “Grazie tutti!!” gave us a grand send off. What a fantastic show of support and a twist of emotions to be leaving to begin our adventures and a part of us wishing to stay with our friends.
We motored out to the middle of Palma Bay and, in fine Italiano tradition, Tracy made us a special lunch of pappardelle con tartufo bianco (fresh from Alba) to send us off with a nice meal in our belly. Giamma tightened up a belt on the engine that was squealing and then we headed out of the bay.
Out at sea we picked up strong winds and we've been on a steady upwind beat ever since with eighteen knots building to nearly thirty and ten knots boat speed. She's on a hard angle, and the first couple hours were an adjustment for everyone- slowly slowly! Oh yeah, the body remembers this. That's right, everything takes three times longer. Just walking through the saloon Tracy said “I’m reminded: slowly step, find a hold, slowly step, yes I made it to the galley!”
We were under full sail in moderate seas earlier in the day when Andrea hooked something on his fishing line- an amazing huge White Marlin! Named "Aguglia imperiale" in Italiano, it was 1.7 meters long! It was a real battle bringing him in, Andrea fought him for a half an hour, a huge big smile on his face, Giamma was ready on the swim platform with a rope and we now have a freezer stuffed full. The seas were too rough to try to cook fish that night so we had the Bolognese I had thawed out earlier with a nice pasta. Tomorrow the winds should be dying off and we can roast some lovely fish steaks in the oven with tomato and olives.