Lift off …

October was just round the corner and as midnight struck on September 30th the French tourist industry abruptly shut down.   Tables and chairs were stacked and chained to walls of now silent cafes.  Sun awnings were wound back, lights turned off and the ‘ouvert’ sign was spun to ‘ferme’. We were back in the Vilaine READ MORE

Homeward Bound

Sadly, as the year was drawing to a close, our temperamental, very expensive and highly problematic electrical system was failing again.  We now only had minimal domestic stand-alone electrical power and had become completely reliant on shore power to maintain any form of normal living. Thankfully, we still have our guarantees and following numerous conversations READ MORE

Ile’ d’Yeu

Several months ago we made passage through the Chanel du Four and ‘The Raz’ to enter the French Atlantic Coastline. Along almost the entire length of this west facing coastline are numerous islands each with its own character and topography. Having already set foot on several of them we headed to L’ile d’Yeu located a READ MORE

Vendee Globe ..

Thankfully, we’re not reliant on my fishing skills for any form of sustenance.   During our travels we often find ourselves sailing through packs of fishing boats surrounded by pods of dolphins and diving gannets, all in a mackerel feeding frenzy.  You would have thought that within this environment I couldn’t fail to get a nibble READ MORE

The Loire

We aimed at Les Sables d’Olonne to meet up with our water tank and more importantly my daughter Emily’s extended French family, and at the same time we pushed further south. Being a bit too far for a day sail we turned into Piriac and parted company with the region of Brittany and entered the READ MORE

“I’m never drinking again!”

When your shopping list looks like this : Oysters, Champagne, Crevettes, Muscadet, More Oysters, Baguettes, French Butter, Highland Whisky… It can only mean ‘The Velzians’ are on their way! And so it was, after three years of missed opportunities and crossed paths that ‘Le Jouannet’ and ‘Blue Spirit’ with her humble crew of Sophie & READ MORE

Uncle Pascal

Buses, credit card bills, midge bites and socks all seem to come in pairs whilst the frequency and scale of boat defects is a more complex equation (displayed as follows) :- Irrespective of how comprehensive our winter overhaul was, the testing environment in which a boat lives and the pressures placed on it’s components, you READ MORE

The Vilaine

April 2017 we left The Hamble our home of some seven years and from under the watchful eye of the eminent Mr Hearsey, Fairview Sailing.  Now heading south and very much on our own, we needed to find a new marina in France.  Our choice would revolve around transport links to the UK, marina facilities, READ MORE

Planes, Trains and Automobiles..

As the late afternoon sun dipped below the horizon we entered the Gulf of Morbihan.  This is one of the ‘must see’ locations of the sailing world and one which we’d often studied and now we were here.   With memories of the Atlantic swell behind us, we entered this huge inland archipelago containing a maze READ MORE

Les Trotters

Leaving Sainte Marine and heading even further from home, we detoured via the Île de Glénan for a lunch stop and swim. These islands lie some 10 miles offshore and are just about visible from the mainland. We were drawn here as they are locally referred to as the ‘Breton Tahiti’ and described ‘as close READ MORE