We came back to Sweden from Denmark. To be precise, from the small harbor at Allinge in the NE of Bornholm, to Falsterbro, the small canal which is a shortcut through from the Baltic proper to øresund, where “The Bridge” is between Copenhagen and Molmo. That we will pass under tomorrow on our way north and west again to Jutland.
There was little wind especially in the morning, so we used too much engine. However, we crossed the busy Baltic shipping lanes without major incident, and did have three, later two, sail up to help. The sea was rather calm, so both Lasse and I tackled small tasks that needed doing, such as getting the navigation lights working, and fixing the handrails properly. Lasse has also cracked our complex electrical system, which is both 24 volt and 12 volt, depending on what it is used for, We can step up the 24 volts to 240 Volts using an inverter, and he has fixed an inverter with two normal sockets so that we can change things that need that. We can also make 240 volts with the generator, but we want to do that as little as possible.
A small but important milestone has been managing to download weather forecasts, charts, and routing data using the iridium Go box, and also working out how to send and receive emails via the box. This has taken a few days, but now I think we’ve got it!
A boat is like a small city. One has to be as self sufficient as possible. We can generate electricity from solar power, and if that is not enough, from diesel. We need that to desalinate the sea water to make drinking water, and so we also have a desalinator. Essentially this is a micro-filter membrane that can filter out the salt in the water under high pressure. We have tanks to hold sewage until we can discharge it either into pumping stations in harbours (where these exist, and work), or into the open sea where nature can handle it. We try to minimize non-biodegradable waste, especially plastic, but if we cannot avoid it, we compress it, and store it until we can get rid of it. We carry a lot of dried and preserved or tinned food, and packets of flour, rice and other dry goods. I have a tin of whole spices, and a tin of ground spices, for cooking. A luxury is to have herbs growing in the cockpit, out small garden. But we cannot really grow our food. It all has to be taken with us in one way or another, and we do like to cook.
Of course when sailing along coastlines and between ports, we meet a lot of interesting people, and sometimes we go to places in order to meet people we know who happen to be there when we are- This is important because they connect us to local places and other people on the way. And we also connect them to a different world.
Last night is a good example. We came to Bornholm partly to meet up with Birthe and Lasse´s son Christian. In fact we not only met him, but his wife and one-year old son, Karl Herman, as well as her parents, their other daughter, Camilla, her husband Mark, and their two kids, Anna and Magnus. This is because we were invited to a BBQ at the summer house they were renting for a week. Mark works for Tata Consulting, the great Indian company. Karen, Lisbeth, Morten and I had visited one of their tea plantations at Munnar in Kerala in 2010—11, and I was quite familiar with the Tata empire for all sorts of other reasons, so we had a lot to chat about. After the BBQ we had a great walk to, and along, the lovely beach, which has the finest sand in Denmark. Later, Christian drove us back to the boat, through the lovely Bornholm countryside.