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Arklow 9th August
9th August, 2005
We had planned to go all the way to Dun Laoghaire today, but the tides in the Irish sea are a bit fierce, nearly four knots at the strongest, so when the tide turned we decided on Arklow. We were a little dubious as the Najad man in Kilmore Quay suggested that Arklow was 'a bit of a toilet'! However he wasn't struck on Kilmore Quay and we liked it so we agreed that his opinion was suspect and we went for it anyway. Arklow is very nice, thank you.
This morning we were up with the larks and with a gentle breeze, thought we might sail off the anchor. Not a good decision. The tide pushed us onto the anchor chain I couldn't lift it without scouring the hull so we fired the motor and pulled back a bit and eventually we were able to get the anchor up without damage. And then we had a grand sail.
But just for a wee while.Within an hour of leaving the wind had reduced to little more than a zephyr and we motored north.
By noon we were sailing again and with dead flat water we were fairly scudding along for a couple of hours. More dolphins were sighted but still the digital camera, and my old git reflexes, were not up to the challenge. The pictures compared with those taken earlier in the day.
By 2.00 pm the wind had died completely, and with a foul tide in the offing we made that decision to motor for Arklow.
I mistook a stone pier for the harbour at Arklow. It turned out to be a dock for the Arklow quarry. I couldn't see it on the chart and was surprised that it wasn't shown on the chart. Of course it is. It's just that I couldn't see the tiny line which indicates it. Perhaps it's time to go for the Braille charts?
We finally located the real Arklow harbour and, before long, we were tied up alongside the visitors' pontoon. Payment was made. Showers were had and we strolled into town for more Guinness and dinner.
We finally ate at the 'Soya Bean', a Thai and Chinese restaurant. Bothe the wonton soup and the chilli soft shell crab were excellent. Main courses of sweet and sour beef and ginger duck were pretty good too and the house white was superb.
We had a couple more pints on the way back to the boat. Very pleasant.
Tomorrow we will make Dun Laoghaire. They say that Arklow marina charges an arm and a leg but Dun Laoghaire costs a whole person. There goes the budget!