Friday the 12th of June Arrived in Largs and met Paddy and Robin in Morrisons for serious food and booze shopping. Nominated Paddy to cook (chicken in a leek and cream sauce with rice) so I could go for a run.
Saturday the 13th of June Set off mid morning (managed another run first thing), and had a very pleasant sail round Arran. Moored in Cambeltown for the night, though didn't actually set foot on shore. Supper was Nigellas sage and onion chicken and sausages (which had been marinading all night).
Sunday the 14th of June Made it to Rathlin Island for lunch (salad with spanish omlette). Post lunch doze then set sail for Portrush where we dropped anchor. Supper was roast lamb, followed by several pleasant pints of Guinness in the Harbour Inn.
Monday the 15th of June Very early start for the tide, but not much wind. Paddy saw a whale attempt to dive under the boat but we all felt the bump as it miscalculated! Later a pod of dolphins swam alongside for 10 minutes. Made it to Sheeps Haven bay in time for a run along the beach followed by a (very) cooling dip in the bay. Pea, prawn and parmesan risotto followed by more Guinness in another Harbour Inn was most agreeable.
Tuesday the 16th of June Fairly slow days sailing with much snoozing, though that was helped along somewhat by cider at lunchtime (which was pasta, stir fried yellow pepper and braised strips of beef that had been marinading in chili, garlic and Worcestershire sauce overnight) Dropped anchor in Church Bay, and there was plenty of time for another run to work up an appetite for linguine with a slow reduced tomato, chili, shallot and red wine sauce (with added choritzo to satisfy the more outspoken non-vegetarians amongst us)
Wednesday the 17th of June Our early start advantage was lost to disentangling supper from the net, though it was well worth the delay. Storm approaching so we dropped anchor near Killybegs for the night.
Thursday the 18th of June Forecast still bad so decided to spend the day waiting for the wind to drop. Good chance to stock up on provisions (cider), go for a run and have a pub lunch accompanied by some exceedingly pleasant Guinness. Post lunch snooze, supper of strips of pork slow cooked in chili sauce, olive oil and angostura bitters with stir fried green pepper, broccoli and spring onions - all on top of noodles in a garlic, ginger and chili broth. Early bed in anticipation of the earliest start yet (4am!)
Friday the 19th of June A rather arduous 16hours commenced. It turned out that the forecast wasn't quite as accurate as one would have hoped for, and a manageable force 5-7 morphed into a much more exciting force 8. Blowing in the wrong direction. We made it across Donegal Bay eventually and dropped anchor in a small and perfectly placed bay. Wet? Yup. Cold? Oh yes. Tired? Extremely. Very very much alive? Hell yes! Happy, hungry and ready for a rum and ginger wine? Perfect! All very pleased with the foresight that produced a chili con carne the day before, which was now hot and accompanied by steaming rice.
Saturday the 20th of June Both John and I needed to catch a flight from Shannon tomorrow morning, 150 miles away. The race was on! Turns out that all that we needed was a good brisk wind (blowing from the correct direction), a good supply of cider, some pasta with garlic and olive oil marinaded chicken, a dismissive attitude to sleeping and 18 hours of straight sailing.Actually surprisingly Easy.