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Las Palmas

Saga Sapphire blog - Captains' blogs

3rd April, 2013

Wind and swell from the north west had developed during the previous day so we took the slightly longer route around the south of Gran Canaria, alleviating the effects of slow speed making the stabilisers far less effective.  Our pilot was a small chap who I felt had just ‘navigational’ English, particularly after he proceeded to make the tugs do exactly the opposite to what I had asked when it came to make the turn inside the harbour in order for us to approach our berth. A raised voice and a few deft movements with the engine telegraph handles sorted the issue and we docked without further incident. He did seem somewhat in a hurry to leave the bridge though (no new hat volunteered there then). 

After arrival Chief Officer Vlad continued with his deck crew and two more cherry pickers to ‘freshen up’ the starboard side of the ship, painting window frames and portholes, around the anchor fleets and the stern. Now the port side needs a good dose of looking at, but of course we need to be port side alongside to do so. Southampton perhaps, when we have five days alongside ‘showcasing’ the ship after our return.

The day was rather pleasant, with partly cloudy skies and a fresh breeze, a breeze which caused some folk to become a little more tanned than they might have wished. The tours were all well received, including a jaunt across the dunes to the south at Maspalomas on a camel, and a visit out into the countryside that included the village of Teror.

Because of the relatively short distance to our next stop, Arrecife, we didn’t depart until later in the evening. There must be something different about the pilots in this place as the one who came aboard just prior to leaving said virtually nothing as I carried out the manoeuvre. Perhaps he had heard about the arrival from his colleague and thought silence was the best means of survival.   

The opinions expressed are those of the author and are not held by Saga unless specifically stated.

The material is for general information only and does not constitute investment, tax, legal, medical or other form of advice. You should not rely on this information to make (or refrain from making) any decisions. Always obtain independent, professional advice for your own particular situation.