March 1993 - Nazare to Sesimbra

Early March 1993   Nazare
I continued working on the boat – finished fitting the fridge and built a big cupboard where the old gas fridge was. We also painted marks on the anchor chain.

14 March 1993   Nazare
Today we fitted a seacock for the new fridge. We motored over to the south side of the port and tied up on a ramp. When the tide went out, we were left dried out. It’s the first time that I’ve ever dried a boat out and I must admit that the thought of our home balancing on a 4 inch wide keel gave me a sleepless night.

In the end it all went well, but drilling the 1.5 inch hole in the bottom of the boat, knowing that the tide was coming back in, was a little worrying. While we had the chance, I scrubbed the bottom of the hull and cleaned the propeller. The propeller anode had very little wastage, so the shaft brushes that I fitted must be working.

I got very annoyed because a young gypsy boy, whom Brett has befriended, decided that he would go for a ride on Brett’s bike. The tide came back in and he still hadn’t come back. We had to sail back across to the marina without the bike. We moored on the outside pontoon of the marina next to Jaon’s boat “Johel”.  Brett managed to get his bike back.

19 March 1993   Nazare
We left our car at Vilar and Eddie (one of my Dad’s friends), kindly drove Glenys and the boys to Nazare and we finally moved back onto the boat.

Drying out in Nazare

20 March 1993   Nazare
We spent the day tidying up to get ready to put to sea.

21 March 1993   Nazare
We continued tidying up and went out for a short test sail. Everything still seems to work, but there wasn’t enough wind to try out the Hydrovane. I swung the compass using the shadow pin – no significant deviation.

22 March 1993   Nazare
We motored across the port to refuel ready to leave tomorrow. After filling up, I went to start the engine but only got an ominous click from the starter motor. It took a few minutes of sweating and swearing to get the engine to start so that we could go back to the marina. We sulked...

23 March 1993   Nazare
I fiddled about with the engine. I checked the wiring and re-soldered the connections on the ignition switch. I finally decided that it was the starter motor, so I took it into town to a garage who deduced that it was the Bendix jamming on a damaged shaft. They told me to come back tomorrow.

24 March 1993   Nazare
The garage couldn’t find a replacement Bendix, so with typical Portuguese ingenuity they said that they would machine the shaft on the old Bendix. They told me to come back tomorrow.

25 March 1993   Nazare
I picked up the starter motor and fitted it. The engine started fine, so we tidied up ready to go to Peniche tomorrow. We are all excited.

26 March 1993   Nazare to Peniche
We’ve escaped Nazare at last. We had a nice sail down to Peniche, which is a fishing port. The Hydrovane seems to work OK but it is a bit fiddly. We picked up a huge five foot diameter steel buoy obviously intended for large fishing boats. The whole harbour appears to be a diesel slick. The town doesn’t have a lot to see so we have decided to go on to Lisbon.

For some reason, we kept being pushed up against the big buoy during the night. I got up a few time to try to stop it - not only was it noisy, but I was worried that the steel would scratch our topsides.

27 March 1993   Peniche to Lisbon
We left Peniche first thing in the morning. We actually got up too early because sunrise was 30 minutes later than the almanac said. There was no wind so we motored all the way. We went the long way around to get into the River Tejo because I don’t have a large scale chart showing the channel from Cascais. We went all the way up the river to the Doca do Terreigo do Trigo, which is full of cruising yachts.

We struggled trying to pick up an aft buoy against a strong cross wind. Then someone pointed out a “downwind” berth behind the same replica ship that was in Porto. Fore and Aft mooring needs some practise – I think that I’ll rig up the mooring hook gadget that my mum bought us for Christmas.

28 March 1993   Lisbon
We persuaded and cajoled the boys up the steep streets to the Castelo where we were rewarded with a nice view of the city and the river. We then went for a drink on a French boat “Jules” with Eric, Anne-Marie & Michel (11 yr old) who played with Brett & Craig.

This harbour is the nearest to the old part of the city and is very pleasant apart from the 4 ft waves every 30 minutes from passing tugs - good for the old sea legs I suppose.

29 March 1993   Lisbon
Glenys went shopping (expensive), I went to chandlers to buy some bits (expensive) and then we went for a walk around the shopping area. It’s a big city with nice architecture, but we find it noisy, expensive and too spread out for the children to walk around. I talked to an American on “Isobar” who is on his way to Russia. He told us that Sevilla is beautiful, we might go there.

30 March 1993   Lisbon to Sesimbra
We decided to motor down the river to the Belem district of Lisbon to get fuel and water and visit the maritime museum, which is supposed to be very good. We managed to get the fuel and water but none of the three marinas would let us stay for the night. We had a choice of either going back to Doca do Terreiro do Trigo against the tide or leave Lisbon. We got the hump and left.

We had a beautiful sail to the small town of Sesimbra – the Hydrovane was wonderful. We went into the fishing harbour and tied up alongside the quay. It smells of fish and feels like home. Sesimbra has a reputation for strong local northerly winds and it was blowing as night fell. I was glad that we weren’t at anchor in the bay.

31 March 1993   Sesimbra
We had a day of rest, building lego castles and went for lunch in a restaurant. In the afternoon, we lay on the beach. We like Sesimbra .