Sunshine and Gales
|02/07/2010||Filled under Clyde, Scotland, Yeovil|
Weather in the area of Scotland where we are now floating tends to follow a fairly typical pattern during the months of May or June in most years; in a typical year there will be a long period of dry, sunny days. This is just the way things tend to turn out and this year has been absolutely true to form with almost continuous daily sunshine, hardly a break, throughout the whole of June. Even May, looking back, was sunny even though a little too cool to encourage sunbathing. As if to prove the accuracy of this rule, on the evening of the last day of June this year the clouds began to form. Overnight some light rain fell and by early morning on the first day of July we were getting the first gusts of a full blown gale driving horizontal rain before it. Gone is the sultry heat; we are now in a different pattern, depressions forming over the Atlantic which follow time-honoured north-easterly tracks over Northern Ireland and Scotland. These are important facts when your life is governed by the wind, its strength and direction, as ours is. Our intended direction of travel now is southwards – we are bound for Ireland – and from Troon this means we must wait for winds with a northerly component or else push on, against common sense, into headwinds.
Troon being on mainland Scotland, we berthed there for the express purpose of leaving Cirrus for a week so that we could journey the length of a very hot Britain to visit our English home in Yeovil, a brief visit to celebrate switching on our new central heating boiler. Such was the temperature there that we took no more than a few minutes to decide that we had a working system; we just didn’t want the house to be any hotter than the sun was already making it, over twenty-five degrees Celsius. But this is an important milestone in the house renovation project we have set ourselves to complete before the end of this year (a target now driven by the scheduled increase in VAT due in January next year).
Even after dragging our hired car back to Scotland our heads are still full of construction plans and colour schemes – we have become avid readers of newspaper Lifestyle supplements – but back on Cirrus we must turn our minds to assessing the weather and making the mental adjustment to life on board again. Fortunately Troon Marina provides a spectacular shower room where we can stand and soak away to our hearts’ content whilst contemplating isobars and thermal gradients.
Today the forecast gave us an opportunity to move very slightly closer to Ireland and we seized the day and sailed west for Campbeltown on the Mull of Kintyre. It was a wild and uncomfortable sail, six hours of being tossed and shaken about although we sailed as fast as our salt-drenched decks could take us. But Cirrus didn’t complain as twenty-five knots of wind screamed through her rigging and pushed against her tight sails. She just bashed her way through every wave making spray-rainbows in the sunshine. No gale this, but more wind than we like to be out sailing in. Cambeltown will have to put up with us for some days now while we wait for something better than this to come along.
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