On our arrival in Cascais Deb and Ita greeted us at the dock.

Official Greeter to Cascais

Once Morpheus was secure in her slip, it was time to explore our arrival port and celebrate.

Here, in no particular order, a selection of pics from our daily excursions to Cascais. With an emphasis on – you know – food and drink.

First – a  regular stop – Oneill’s Irish Pub:

 Cascais graffiti is quite artistic:

 There is always another cafe to try…

… and interesting things to see.

Or another cafe to try:

Local amused by dog in purse.

Our big dinner at Furnas do Guincho:

House specialty appeared to be the salt baked fish. 

We picked the big red mullet for the treatment.

Started with something I’ve neve had before – barnacles.
We needed instruction on how to eat them.

Deb could not decide between the garlic cream mussels, tomoto onion mussels or Mussels Rockefeller. So… we got all three.

The salt roasted fish was quite a production.

Pricey but very good. Jim Gregory 

MW Ship’s Log May 19, 20 – Running the Gauntlet

Captain Jim instructs swabbie on what to look for while on watch

Dateline: High Noon. Monday May 20

198 nm traversed on Day 4 of the Sao Miguel to Cascais passage. 37 nm to our destination at 10:00 AM.

Land in sight at 11:00 with the Captain at the helm.

Philine Schultz, Umm Slal, Coral Methane, Kaveri Spirit, High Force, Msc Sandra, Lavaux, Eurocargo Salerno – a few of the ships that passed within visual range as we approach Cascais. All quite large, some quite close.

 In these last 30 miles we are crossing four major shipping lanes. It’s the last gauntlet before we pull into port. The end is literally in sight.

Favorable winds, blues skies, blue water, benign swells – the great conditions continued throughout most of yesterday. Single reef during the day, unreefed most of the night. Our last Happy Hour with the full crew on deck under sail. Beer. Of course.

The predicted rain did not show up until after Happy Hour. We thought the Atlantic might throw one last curveball at us – but it missed the strike zone. Instead we again have dolphins escorting us through freighters and tankers in brilliant sunshine.

This will be my last sailmail post. Should be able to switch back to internet enabled smartphone and blogger posts as we pull into port later this afternoon.

After sailing across the ocean we are about to discover The Old World. I intend to claim this land in the name Barack Obama and the Congress of the United States of America.

Our last hot breakfast under sail. Chilaquiles – eggs, chips, cheese, ham and salsa. Another Comfort Food masterpiece.

Quote of the Day:
“Land Ho” – Captain Jim

P.S. Last, last Quote of the day:
“I am done (writing, blogging….)” – MW

Who will be 1st?

Jim has about 180 miles to go. I have about 3,200. Who will reach Cascais first? We will see. Morpheus is performing up to her usual stellar self, but nothing goes to windward like a 747!

I’ll let you all know!!!!


MW Ship’s Log May 18 – Home Stretch

Dateline: 10:00 A.M. Sunday May 19

200.19 nm traversed on Day 3 of the Sao Miguel to Cascais passage. 235 nm to our destination. All sailing all the time. Jib deployed and double reefed.

It’s the home stretch and it feels like it. Morpheus is like a thoroughbred champion that smells the finish line, lengthens her stride and accelerates down the final stretch. Despite being reigned in by her jockey with a double reef she posted our second 200 nm lap of the passage.

We’ve been measuring progress in 24 hour increments since our 10:00 AM departure from Sao Miguel. This benchmark now occurs during my watch. Today, in the last minutes before the 10:00 marker Morpheus maintained a consistent 10 knots of boat speed and hit 11 knots twice. First time I’ve seen an 11 on my watch. It was like she wanted to be absolutely sure we got over that 200 nm milestone.

It’s been blue skies, blue water and puffy white clouds as we make a beeline for Cascais. Throughout the day we’ve had dolphin escorts show up, check us out and then mostly disappear as the cameras hit the deck.

Hopefully, we’ve got a couple of good shots.

Weather is cool, but not particularly uncomfortable. The occasional rogue wave keeps any cockpit spectators in foul weather gear, but the ride is worth it. A comfortable wind angle and Morpheus making great strides.

The evening watch brought another milestone – we passed the halfway point from the Azores to Portugal. The celebration was a bit more subdued than the halfway celebration on the first leg of the passage.

Some modifiers were added to my mug label. I am sure I don’t know why.

 The inflatable pirate hat was recycled and the Captain poured out a parsimonious rum allotment. We’re out of ginger beer, so rum punch was the drink of the day. The traditional first toast to Otto the autopilot was tinged with a note of sadness. The realization is sinking in that this extraordinary journey is coming to an end.

Bob gives Otto a break.

Early in the passage I watched the moon rise off the bow during my late night watch.

Last night I watched the moon set directly aft.

Kim’s ginger garlic chicken curry tomato and spinach goulash. You name it. It’s in there. Excellent.

Quote of the Day:
“Woo Hoo” – The 5-6-7-8 Band from the Kill Bill V1 soundtrack. Played during the half way celebration.

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