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Update:     25th September, 2000
Location: Safi, Morocco
Position: 32 deg 19' N, 9 deg 15' W

We originally  planned to leave Gib on Monday 18th September, but had to wait a few days for favourable winds. 

By keeping close to the Spanish coast, we gained the advantage of favourable currents and made good progress through the Strait of Gibraltar and past Tarifa point. Then crossing the Strait we found the wind increasing up to 35 knots, which together with the swell and the outfalls of the northwestern tip of Morocco, made for a pretty bouncy ride. Welcome to the Atlantic Ocean!

With only the two of us onboard, we take 4 hour watches, but we do have some 'virtual' crewmembers to help out with the steering - our  Monitor windvane and CPT autopilot.


Lesley and Adam and Negra (seen here boarding Oasis by our new passarelle) came to Gib see us off on the Monday morning, but had to content themselves with waving goodbye to us in the marina, as there was no way we were heading out into the teeth of a westerly.

As you can see, along with the Easterly wind came the Levante cloud. On Thursday morning David Lyon from Te Quiero came to the fuel dock to take this photo of us, and could be seen cycling toward the cruise terminal to wave us off as we left the dominating skyline of the Rock behind us and headed out through the bay
We arrived at Safi harbour early on Sunday morning. Safi is Morocco's largest fishing port, and a commercial freighter terminal for the despatch of phosphates and other bulk goods - not really an ideal place for a cruising yacht to take a mooring. As you can see here, Oasis is dwarfed by the wall and cranes. This was a quiet corner that we were able to stay in overnight so we were able to go ashore and visit the medina and souk, where we bought a lovely hand woven rug for the saloon.
Safi is also renowned for ceramics and boat building. The walled town looks very interesting, and dates back to the 16th century. Given more time, it would have been good to explore further, and particularly to see the potters at work.  We did see the boatbuilding and fishing port - it was interesting to see close up some of the craft that are responsible for the lights we see at night off the coast!

Left: B with some last minute shopping and a view of the Rock from Marina Bay   Right: Graham at the helm as we pass the most southerly part of Spain - Tarifa point


Below: sunrise over the Moroccan coast north of Safi
Our friendly and entertaining neighbours at Marina Bay, David and Lotte from Te Quiero, an Ocean 60.
David will be fondly remembered for our  'Don't Worry, Be Flappy' memento and his unmistakeable laugh and infectious good humour.   Lotte shared her culinary expertise making us an unforgettable Danish supper of pork in gravadlax style,as well showering us with boxes of ProVita.
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