I didn’t need my alarm to wake me this morning. My body just knew I needed to be up bright eyed and set to leave on the 7.25 am flight to Gibraltar. Up and ready to go at 5am, Darren drove me to the Airport and chucked me out on the roadside. We are definitely not paying the scandalous £3 drop off charge at Manchester Airport. So drybag on my back it was a quick walk across the road to the terminal. This morning the airport was an absolute breeze, I dropped my bag at the EasyJet automated bag drop and made my way to security. Which was operating this morning like a finely oiled machine, the herds were doing as they were told, belts off, shoes off, no accidental shampoo left lurking in hand baggage to set off the emergency shampoo in bags alert, electrical items spread out evenly in the trays. Within minutes I was airside and ready for coffee. Refillable cup…. saved 25p right there! Then straight to the gate to board. What is going on? No delay , 3 seats to myself on the plane, a steady tailwind and landed Gibraltar 35 minutes ahead of schedule. I hope this sets the tone for the rest of my week. I am about to embark on my RYA Day Skipper practical, a week sailing to test my learning so far. Perhaps at the end of the week I can progress from novice sailor to inexperienced sailor with some newly honed skills. I have packed light in practice for my race, nothing extra, no luxuries, nothing that is not essential for the week ahead. A chance not only to practice some of my new theory but also hopefully build on some of the skills I have learnt in level 1 and 2 of my Clipper training.
I made it, I am sat in a little bar in the marina with an alcohol free beer and a few hours to kill before the 4pm start time. I have dropped my bag in the office and taken a little walk along the pontoon to see the yacht that will be my home for the week. Excited and a little apprehensive to meet the crew but so far everyone I have met on this adventure has been friendly and approachable. So fingers crossed.