On Saturday March 24 the first Fair Transport of chocolate – ever – has left from the Caribbean to Europe!
To wave the ship off, we left early in the morning for the harbor in St George, the last descent for us as well, sad to leave Belmont Estate and their people behind, I hope to be back very soon since it has become my home away from home in the three weeks I stayed there.
It was a beautiful sunny day and we arrived just in time to see Mott and Charlie do their first climb in the mast. With ease they got in there and will be doing this again when the ship is on the sea (!) it takes great balance but they seemed to enjoy it a lot.
Mott did a last check on the cooling room – still 19 degrees and doing great. The final preparations were done to make the ship ready for departure, last stop in the stores and last walk on land.
Many people came to wave the boat off. Staff members of the chocolate factory, cocoa farmers, friends, including the Prime Minister (who is another very loyal customer, lucky enough to live across the chocolate factory!).
The captain was occupied arranging the last paper works, so there was still time for the crew to have lunch on board. After lunch, around 16.00h everybody was ready to sail off. A bright and sunny day and all morning the wind had been increasing which made it possible for the Tres Hombres to sail off on its own (without help of the tugboat).
The crew got a final briefing of the departure strategy; how the ship will be turned, which sails need to be pulled and in which order… It is a beautiful sight to see the sails filled with wind as they move out of the harbor onto the open sea. People waving on the shore, camera’s running. I was lucky to be on the tugboat to get some good shots of the event, see the video below. Sounds of wind blowing but the Tres Hombres itself had a perfectly silent departure, breathtaking as she stears towards the horizon and eventually disappears behind the mountains….
Now we only have their blogs to hear how they are doing, few words every now and than, and of course the shiptracker to see where they are, still following them closely – first stop after about 30 days will be the Azores….
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