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Mindelo, Cabo Verde 🇨🇻

·1077 words·6 mins
ARC+ 2023
Nuvem Mágica
Table of Contents
ARC+ 2023 - This article is part of a series.
Part 10: This Article

Ave amigos da sodade 🎤

The Mindelo team!

Last time, we parted ways after our arrival in Mindelo. What a relief it was to be on land again! 🏝️ We still had to go up the mast once more and take the spinnaker down, but we were now docked and happy to be tied up to something!

⛵️ Boat jobs

🪭 The tale of the spinnaker

We’ve explained in a previous post what happened to our brand new symmetric spinnaker. Once we arrived in Mindelo, we handled the check-in, customs and immigration, and decided it was time for the spinnaker to come down.

Unfortunately, however, by the time we were finished with the administrative work, some moderately strong thermal winds had built up, hitting Nuvem Mágica from the back and powering the spinnaker bubble. David managed to disconnect the halyard and start taking the sail down, but with the slack generated, the balloon was powered even more. Afterwards, we were told by other boats that, for every gust, our powered bubble was moving the whole floating pontoon!

Inês checked the predictions, and winds on the order of 18-20 knots were announced for the following days. Apparently left with no window of low winds, we decided to shred the sail. This was itself a lot of work: cutting through the hard fibers demanded force and precision, and, strangely enough, this is when we had to take out the first aid kit when, inevitably, a couple of people cut themselves (nothing serious, fortunately).

🔎 Rig inspection

At this stage, David has probably spent as much time on the mast as he has on deck 😅

After taking down the spinnaker, we went up the mast again (both David and Inês), and did a thorough inspection of the rigging. We took pictures of everything, and honed in on everything we could think of. Everything seemed intact, and Nuvem Mágica looked strong 💪!

🧼 Cleaning spree

The boat needed a good wash from top to bottom (quite literally), and were grateful to our friends on Nuvem Mágica for helping us with it!

🩹 Fixes here and there… fixes everywhere!

Finally, there were a lot of small things to be done: lines needed whipping, sailbags needed sewing, steel needed polishing… but other jobs called for professional assistance. For instance, we had a salt water leak in our starboard engine room that needed fixing.

🍎 Provisioning

We have covered the details on provisioning in a separate post, and it was that time of the trip again! We bought kilos and kilos of food from the local municipal market, and were very happy with their fresh produce!

We had a lot of work to do, but we made some time to eat out and took one day to explore 🧭.

🇨🇻 Cabo Verde

Because of the historical ties between Portugal and Cabo Verde, it is not uncommon, in Portugal, to have family members who grew up or lived in Cabo Verde, or friends who moved from Cabo Verde to Portugal. But neither of us had actually been in Cabo Verde before. We were amazed.

👥 The people

Marina Mindelo is not your superyacht fancy marina. What it tells instead is a story of entrepreneurship. The facilities have what you need, and the teams you meet are hard-working and friendly. BoatCV in particular is known for performing miracles at every turn. Their website says: Our motto is …if it’s man-made, we can fix it… and our ambition is to challenge ourselves every time. We saw them repairing forestays, hunched over in engine rooms, and running around the dock taking requests from sailors on the fly. We contacted them because we had a leak in our engine room, and they showed up later that same day!

We did a guided tour in Santo Antão and were very impressed by the guides: they would speak incredible English, and then turn to the other side and switch to French, Portuguese, or Creole. We spoke to them and, besides working as guides, these people were building businesses, taking online degrees and all around just very, very proactive and interested people.

🫘 The food

It was lobster time 🦞! … and cachupa time!

🌱 Santo Antão

We had the pleasure of visiting Santo Antão and cannot recommend it enough. Some friends compared the sights in Santo Antão to Jurassic Park, and we quickly understood what they meant. Lush green and mountainous views… we were in awe. Some villages there are so remote that there is no street or road leading to them: you have hike up the mountain.

✨ Highlights

❤️ New crew!

While some friends did have to leave, we were very happy to welcome new crew! Margarida, Pedro, Arnau and Vuk had joined on Leg 1 and we were excited to welcome Camille and Ben to the boat for Leg 2!

👾 Auntie Nuvem Mágica

We might have disclosed in Las Palmas that we owned a Nintendo Switch and given the two boys from Blue Wonder a taster of a couple of games. Next thing we knew, we were being boarded by five kids from our friends at Blue Wonder and Spirit! Any Zelda fans out there? 😉

🪩 The Maracujá Mágica party

And then, we decided to throw a huge party. Our friends from Maracujá caught some amazing fresh fish and we invited everyone over to Nuvem Mágica! DJ Oh No (Arnaud) took care of the music and also made a special caipirinha with local grogue. The guests also brought delicious food! Let me tell you, we had a lot of fun! The following day, we received a very funny message from another buddy boat saying their dog was fine (their lovely doggy is always welcome aboard our boat 🐶) but… he did not know where his wife was! 😂

🩳 In short…

Our time in Mindelo was short and packed with to do’s, emotions and fun. We were recovering from Leg 1, and set on making Leg 2 a better experience.

In our next blog post, we’ll let you know how the trip from Cabo Verde to Grenada went 😉

Fair winds and fun times,

Your Nuvem Mágica

📚 Resources

ARC+ 2023 - This article is part of a series.
Part 10: This Article