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The bark EUROPA adventure

Back on board Bark Europa 22th of September 2015 for the third time I was full of curiosity to follow that part of an ancient route from
Portugal to the Canary Islands. This blog entry is about the first week which has been just “relaxing busy” and enjoyable.

Back on board Bark Europa 22th of September 2015 for the third time I was full of curiosity to follow that part of an ancient route from Portugal to the Canary Islands. This blog entry is about the first week which has been just “relaxing busy” and enjoyable.

We started our sailing journey on Wednesday 23rd of Sept in Cascais with lots of nice trading winds and sailing with around 9 knots and big waves in the first 3 days which made our lady Europa dancing on the Sea. Maybe not too comfortable for everyone’s stomach until adaptation but definitely an experience!

Within these first days we learned about the ship and the hundreds of ropes connected to the different sails and how to set, brace or downhaul them. Also the whole voyage crew started to grow together with each other and the permanent crew.

After learning all names of people from 20 different nationalities (of course we count UK, Ireland, Wales and Scotland separately ;-)) the talks began to deepen into many interesting exchanges which are still going on and we also had a lot of fun! It is always fantastic to have such a broad diversity of people on board. So many different backgrounds and stories but at least all are united on this boat for this trip and share this story together…

Besides setting sails, trimming and bracing, steering the ship at the helm during our watches or fulfilling our duties at the lookout, we also had the chance for lots of volunteer ship maintenance work. Thanks to the open, patient and friendly permanent crew. Everywhere on board one could meet people happily busy with a task like varnishing, polishing, painting, setting up new blocks, climbing the rigging for diverse maintenance work up there, helping with food preparation or also joining one of the lessons about sailing the ship and basic navigation. The voyage crew on this trip quickly turned out to be very active and happy to be involved in running the ship. We also had the chance to follow an important Men over board manoeuvre for training purpose.

All that time we are so spoiled with yummy food! Big thanks to the galley and the assisting crew!

On Sunday 27th of Sept we reached Madeira and were at anchor at Funchal for 24 hours. We explored the island in little groups for two half days and shared all stories afterwards together having a beer on the main deck until deep into the night.

We left Madeira heading towards Tenerife yesterday noon but soon slowed down to 0.9 knots pace drifting on the ocean with nearly no wind. Our Captain Harko took the chance to let us all abandon the ship for a wonderful swimming in the wide open ocean.

Afterwards we started the engine to further follow our course towards Tenerife. Soon, we were able again to spot a large group of dolphins approaching the ship and this time swimming in front of the ship making use of the bow wave for their plays. We could watch them very close for quite long from the foredeck directly swimming and jumping below us and it seemed that these lovely creatures actually had the same fun as we had before!

I finish this blog for today finding some sleep within the next hours to get ready for all adventrues which we will still face within the next days.

Written by:
Silvia | Voyage crew

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