Leaving Mandal and the family was a tougher experience than originally thought. In the hours before leaving, we did our final preparation for the night sail and then it hit us, now we leave the safe haven of Norway for a long time. In this Covid-19 times, Norway has been a good and safe country to be in, and now we go outside. Even though we travel a lot in normal days, this feeling of uncertainty was there.
The departure was set to 16.00 and shortly before we received a visit from my parents, our friends Per Olaf and Merethe (and Truls, the dog), and Christina, my cousins wife. We had a last coffee in the cockpit before we said farewell. They waved us off with flags and, if I’m not mistaken, a small tear in their eye.
When leaving the port, my cousin and my brother came in my cousin’s boat to follow us the miles. The sails were raised just outside Sjøsanden and we had a nice broad reach, doing 7knots towards Ryvingen. We were happy to finally be sailing with the wind not straight on the nose…it didn’t last of course. Shortly southwest of Ryvingen, the wind died almost, but he waves remained, resulting in flapping sail, no progress and then we had to start the engine again. We ate, slept on turn, and eventually, the waves calmed and the wind came back, at least with a 6-8knots strength from the south. I turned off the engine during the night and enjoyed the night sail with U2 on the headphones until the co-pilot scared the socks off me by appearing without and warning in the door. We enjoyed the sunrise, coffee and saw Denmark appear in front of us.
We slowed down a bit to ensure we came in when others left and secure a place. We did after the normal boat moving procedures in packed harbours and were ready for the traditional herring lunch at Bodilles. It tasted fantastic as always.
As a nice surprise our good friends, the crew of Seastar 3, all of a sudden appear in the entrance. They had decided to make a surprise trip from Norway to meet us for the last time before our departure. They were headed to Sæby, a bit further south, and so were we, but the weather changed that so this was, unfortunately, the last we saw of each other for some time. Thanks for coming guys, we really appreciate it and look forward to seeing you again, and thanks for the touching presentation of all the fun we’ve had the last years!
The next day, we woke up to the sun, 34knots of wind, as always and rented bikes. We biked to Skagens rev and enjoyed the sight of the north tip of Denmark and the current and waves meeting creating a unique view. We walked barefoot in the sand and water, but had close encounters with the blue jellyfish and got a little stung by them. Then we headed to Old Skagen and enjoyed traditional Danish Smørrebrød for lunch and a “lille en”. A true Danish experience.
We biked home, returned the bikes and went to relax a bit. The captain met up with some friends in a neighbouring boat and had a good time, ensuring that some prosecco didn’t get to old. Thanks to Per Kjetil and Tove Mette for the service!
The next day the plan was to go to Sæby, but the discovery of a rotten watermelon in the bottom of the boat, combined with a continuing gale from the southwest we decided to go directly to Anholt the next day. Anholt has been on the captain’s bucket list for the last three years and finally, we were going!