By way of background

It all started over breakfast coffee one day when the darling spouse said, “I think we should buy a boat.”

In time-honoured tradition, I said absently, “That’s nice, dear,” while looking in horror at all the online polls showing how well Trump was doing in the race for Republican candidate.

When we had first gone sailing with friends in the Med many years ago, the spouse was so taken with the experience that he determined to buy a yacht and moor it in the Med so we could live on it a few months of the year. Provided he could get internet access constantly so he could work on the boat. Not wanting to sound dismissive, I had always viewed it along the lines of my occasional comment of, “When I win the lottery.”

“There’s one in Portugal I want to go look at,” he persisted. “Want to come out with me and look at it?”

That got my attention very quickly. It seems that over the years, rather than losing the desire to own a yacht, the criteria had been crystallizing in spouse’s mind. It had to be a Moody 40 with the big rear cabin, with in-mast furling, and it had to have a blue hull. All of which boxes Masquerade ticks.

And here we are: from seeing the details of Masquerade online to buying her, getting all the work done, and preparing to sail her back to the UK has been a process of less than six months. I guess when all the pieces fall into place it all moves along quickly.

Incidentally, though that first sailing trip was nearly 11 years ago, we are what ‘proper’ sailing people scornfully refer to as part-timers: our experience has been limited to a week or two a year in non-tidal waters. The spouse is rather more experienced that I am, as on those trips I tended to be more bartender and scribe than useful crew member.

So it may be a doddle for many of you out there to sail from Portugal to the UK, but for us it is an awfully big adventure.

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