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03/02/07   The question I posed at the end of January has been answered.  Much the same weather for February!!  The alarm on the wind instrument (which I now have switched on all the time) sounded at 7am yesterday with 40 knots of wind.  That isn't a problem, but the sea swell is something else!  Once again I found myself surging back and forth, stopping just short of the concrete jetty as the stern rope creaked under the strain.  The rain was hammering down again and continued without a moments let up until 4pm today.  The jerks as bow ropes tightened on the backward surge was sufficient to throw me from one side of the bed to the other, making sleep impossible, or to send me staggering down the cabin if standing up.  Two of my seven ropes on the bow parted under the strain and I have replaced them since four o'clock.  The chandlery has no more rope of suitable size, nor will they have any for a few months, so it's scrape the bottom of the rope locker time!!   The swell has now abated and hopefully I will have a more peaceful sleep tonight!   Jim, on the other side of "Bamboo" has, (like me) suffered terminal damage to his pulpit and today was creating hell with the marina staff.   I could not resist adding my 'two-penny-worth ' to the somewhat lively debate, all done in a typical reserved Northern way!!!  Those of you who know me and who are reading this log, will understand what I mean.

I have added a route map button on the left for the blondes amongst you, and for my friend Chris, who isn't very good at geography and needs a map to find his bathroom!

On the 6th the pulpit was delivered - still wrong!  More high winds forcing me  to get up early on the 9th to tend to lines.  Heard on the news of heavy snow falls in UK extending over southern England - and no inbound flights from Gatwick tending to confirm that.  Then a week of jet fighter activity....4 small, black RAF fighters  landing and taking-off several times a day and buzzing the runway in an entertaining fashion.  The morning of the 13th brought sunshine and a temperature of 21oC as Nigel and Lorraine onboard 'Sagittario' (the re-named 'Captain Frank') sailed for Tenerife.  The following day Colin and Trish on 'Moody Time', slipped and continued their voyage into the Mediterranean, as did the big Sunseeker motor yacht damaged last month - whereas I continue to wait for pulpit!!  18th - westerly winds and a weekend of incoming sea swell making the berth uncomfortable for two days -  constant rope checks.   21st - following daily visits to GIB Stainless, where Dean is supposed to work but never does, one of his neighbours informed me that he had packed up the business until Mike returns from Thailand.   I went ballistic, got his mobile number from the neighbour and rang him, only to be laughed at.  He now has a short time  to sort it out before I seek legal advice.  I  strongly advise any yachtsman following me into Gibraltar, and requiring any stainless steel repairs, to look elsewhere and not give this cowboy any work. 24th - my shore support team (Ann!) arrived on the noon flight for a week's holiday, landing in glorious sunshine.  We sat in the cockpit with 'suitable' refreshments whilst Ann brought me up to speed with events in UK and regretted the fact that she had not packed any shorts in her luggage.  25th - on with the tour guide hat and the obligatory trip up the rock to see the monkeys (info link) and caves, again in very hot weather.  26th - another hot one!  We walked across the border into La Linea, then got a taxi to Rosie's chandlery, where I managed to get some new rope and a couple of shock absorbing springs, along with a few other bits and pieces,  before going to Bianca's for our evening meal.  27th - this weather is excellent for Ann's break and we sat in the cockpit whilst I spliced the new ropes and springs to fit on the bow, and which I hope will make a  noticeable difference to the 'snatching' effect when swells come into the marina.  Ann capitulated and went into town to buy some shorts and is now sunburnt!

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