Falmouth is paradise for sailors. There are gaff rigged oyster smacks, pilot cutters and wooden boats everywhere. If only the weather were less odious and the tides (15′ + at springs) more manageable. Here, a lovely estuary 6 hours later becomes a sprawling mud flat with towering stone walls. You have to take your tidal calculations seriously in this part of the world.

An old fisherman told us that this summer (and I use the term “summer” loosely) has been the worst he has seen in 40 years. Don’t we know it!

We had one gorgeous sunny day in Falmouth and our friends David and June took us for a gentle sail in Serendipity. Later, in cold drizzle and mist, we groped our way up the narrow tidal channel to Falmouth Boatyard and hauled out Blue Dove at Rustler Marine. What a stout little vessel she is, dwarfed but by no means diminished by shiny 60′ yachts on either side of her.

The Rustler folk are hospitable, competent and friendly, even if their yard is almost inaccessible after 8 pm. With her burgeoning navigational skills Miss Perfect had taken me round Lands End inside Longships and Kettle’s Bottom in Blue Dove and then, here at the boatyard, over a back fence so that we could grope our way back home to our boat at any hour. Her navigational skills are improving in leaps and bounds. What a find she is!

getting home

The new dehumidifier has made Blue Dove comfortable, warm and snug. Even Christine might have found it tolerable. With the help of Ian Knowles at Rustler we have lined up sail repairs, mounts for our elderly Aries self steering gear, and essential fibreglass repairs to the damaged bow section, all to be taken care of over the winter.

Meanwhile, in Falmouth town our favourite pub – The Chain Locker – gives regular and much needed succour. At another pub next door we savoured an evening of Breton folk music. Maxine was in much demand on the dance floor. 

Now snugged down for the winter, Blue Dove is happy and not yet neglected. Miss Perfect and I have trained up to London, en route Moscow yet again. She will stop off in London for a couple of days to catch up with Dirk while I queue endlessly at Heathrow for the red eye flight to Sheremetyevo airport.

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