Canary Island Cacti

The Mother-in-Law’s Cushion cactus, Echinocactus grusonii, grows to an immense size and would certainly make for an uncomfortable seat. © Jeffrey Cardenas

An irony of Canary Island cacti is that, despite being a ubiquitous part of this island’s landscape, not a single variety of cactus originated here. Nearly all of them came from the Americas. They are travelers, like me. They want to be here. When the Spaniards brought the plants to the Canaries from the New World, it was as if the cacti said to this scorched earth, “Where have you been all of my life?” The climate is perfect for Cactaceae. It is arid and windy with hot sun and cool night air, and the black volcanic soil is an ideal medium for a cactus. In addition to grapevines and date palms, cacti are nearly the only other natural thing on the island of Lanzarote colored green. And the cacti are not just green; they also show hues of red, purple, pink, and yellow. Volcanoes turned much of this island into shades of burned toast. The cacti arrived in a rainbow of color.

Cacti are sustainable visitors. They don’t consume resources (irrigation). They literally squeeze water from stone and then hold it during long periods of drought with brilliant biology that includes a wax-like skin layer and water-retaining cell membrane. And what use is a cactus, you ask? Aside from being a beautiful plant (see below), their fruit–the prickly pear–is a delicious and important food source in the Canary Islands. (You haven’t lived until you have eaten a freshly grilled red snapper on the beach served with prickly pear salsa.) More importantly, the Opuntia variety of cacti produces a commodity to Lanzarote that was once equal to the value of gold and silver. Inconceivably, it originated in the form of a wingless female parasite called cochineal.[1]

“…one of the most precious products to come out of the West Indies is the cochineal, a commodity equal to gold and silver.”

–King Felipe III, 1620

Like an aphid or mealybug, the cochineal insect buries its proboscis into the fleshy leaves of the prickly pear cactus and satiates itself on the plant’s moisture and nutrients. As the parasite grows, it absorbs a red pigment that, when processed, becomes carmine. Carmine dye was used by Aztecs and Mayans as early as the second century BC. Cities conquered by Montezuma in the 15th century paid their yearly tributes in bags of cochineal dye.[2] After the Spanish conquest of the Aztec Empire, cochineal was exported to Spain, and by the 17th century, it was a commodity traded around the world. Cochineal dye became Mexico’s second-most valued export after silver.[3] Dye pigments produced from the cochineal insect gave the Catholic cardinals their vibrant robes and the English “Redcoats” their distinctive uniforms. The dried bugs parts were so highly prized that cochineal was regularly quoted on the London and Amsterdam Commodity Exchanges. Large-scale production of cochineal emerged, especially in Latin America and the Canary Islands.[4]

Mexican Indian Collecting Cochineal with a Deer Tail by José Antonio de Alzate y Ramírez, 1777 © Public Domain

Today, dry cochineal powder is currently selling online for as much as $500 per kilo. It takes about 80,000 to 100,000 insects to make one kilogram of cochineal dye, and the Canary Islands produces some 20 tons per year.[5] The carmine dye from Lanzarote’s plants and elsewhere is primarily used as a colorant in cosmetics and food. The water-soluble form of cochineal is included in the ingredients of a wide variety of products, including processed meats, ketchup, alcoholic drinks, juice beverages, candies, and dairy products. There was a brouhaha 10 years ago when customers discovered that Starbucks was using cochineal insect dye to make their Strawberry and Creme Frappuccino. After the inevitable headlines, Starbucks reconsidered its recipe and announced it no longer colors its coffee drinks with bugs.

I had my first taste of cactus at Lanzarote’s stunningly beautiful Jardín de Cactus in the northeastern village of Guatiza. The café there specializes in green prickly pear burgers (from locally-grown cactus) served in a carmine-red sesame seed bun with a glass of freshly-squeezed cactus juice. Yum! The Lanzarote Cactus Garden is a botanical wonderland in an abandoned picon (volcanic soil) mine at the heart of the island’s prickly pear plantations. The garden has over 4,500 specimens of cactus and other succulents, including 450 different species originating from five continents. The creation of Jardín de Cactus was the final inspiration of Lanzarote’s favorite son, environmental artist César Manrique, who died shortly after the garden was inaugurated. The garden and its integration of artistic creativity into the environment was an essential part of Lanzarote being named a UNESCO Biosphere Reserve in 1993.


The images below were made from the Jardín de Cactus and other locations on Lanzarote. For you botanists in the crowd, several photos show Euphorbaicea instead of Cactaceae (can you pick them out?) because, like many things in nature, these plants are too beautiful to be ignored.

Click on any thumbnail photo below to be directed to a carousel of high-resolution, full-frame images that include data and camera settings.

All images: © Jeffrey Cardenas

A layer of black volcanic sand provides protection from the sun for these cacti in the garden of the El Grifo winery on Lanzarote. © Jeffrey Cardenas

REFERENCES

[1] Lanzarote Catus Garden, A Gardener’s Notes, Guillermo Benigno Perdomo Perdomo, 2018

[2] Timeline of Fabrics, Threads In Tyme, LTD, 2005

[3] The Bug that Changed History, J. Behan, 2006.

[4] A Perfect Red: Empire, Espionage, and the Quest for the Color of Desire, Amy Butler Greenfield, 2005

[5] Canary Islands Cochineal Producers, https://web.archive.org/web/20050624075803/http://www.arrakis.es/~rpdeblas/cochinea.htm 1998 and Tropical Commodities and their Markets, Foodnet, 2012

Special thanks: Antonio Manuel Martín Santos, Lanzarote Jardín de Cactus, for help with plant identification


Sailing is not just about the wind and the sea; equally important are the places where Flying Fish carries me, and the flora, fauna, and people I encounter along the way.

Please click “Follow” at the bottom of this page so that you don’t miss a new update, and please consider sharing this post with others who might enjoy following the voyage of Flying Fish. I welcome your comments, and I will always respond when I have an Internet connection. I will never share your personal information.

You can follow the daily progress of Flying Fish, boat speed (or lack thereof), and current weather as I sail into the Atlantic by clicking this satellite uplink: https://forecast.predictwind.com/tracking/display/Flyingfish. A Bonus: Click the “Legends and Blogs” box on the right side of the tracking page for passage notes while I am sailing offshore. 

To see where Flying Fish has sailed since leaving Key West in 2017, click here: https://cruisersat.net/track/Flying%20Fish.

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Text and Photography © Jeffrey Cardenas 2021

Let this be a time of grace and peace in our lives   – Fr. John Baker

The Green Lagoon

Charco de los Clicos, Lanzarote — If only I had been here 57 years ago… I might have seen Raquel Welch emerging from this green lagoon, her breasts spilling out of a fur bikini, only to be snatched from the beach by a carnivorous Pteranodon and flown to its nearby nest where the distraught “Loana the Fair One” was to be fed to the pterosaur’s offspring.

Ah, well, timing is everything.

Much of the 1966 cinematic fantasy, One Million Years B.C., was filmed in Lanzarote, including the epic green lagoon scene. The location director deserved an Oscar for choosing this island. If I blinked today and saw a 200-pound flying reptile swoop down out of the volcanic rocks to carry away a tourist climbing out of a tour bus, it would all seem perfectly normal. A million years and this place is still prehistoric.

The island of Lanzarote bubbled up from a hot spot in the ocean 15 million years ago as plate tectonics transformed the earth. It has been nearly three centuries since the last major volcanic eruption and much of the island is unchanged. A dry climate and lack of erosion–and the protection of the spectacular Timanfaya National Park–have left the landscape pristine (translation: burnt to a crisp). NASA used this otherworldly topography to train the Apollo 17 crew.

Despite the current and severe volcanic activity on the Canary Island of La Palma 200 miles to the west, Lanzarote is known as the “Island of Volcanoes.” There are over 100 volcanic craters on this island that measures only 37 miles north to south. During the eruptions here in the 1730s, which lasted six years, the island grew by several square miles. Flames were visible 130 miles away and smoke hung in the air while lava and ash covered large areas of the island. Lives were lost, homes destroyed, and residents were plunged into years of darkness.[1]

All images © Jeffrey Cardenas

The Green Lagoon is one of the volcanic craters that formed during these powerful eruptions. The Atlantic Ocean eroded the western side of the cone flooding the crater with seawater. A berm of black volcanic rock and coarse sand now separates the lagoon from the ocean. Ancient lava tubes and underground fissures circulate the water. Charco de los Clicos was once home to a thriving colony of shellfish known locally as clicos (thus the name) until someone put a pair of turtles into the lagoon, and they devoured every last clico. Now the lagoon is inhabited by phytoplankton, microscopic marine algae, which gives the water its distinctive emerald green hue.

The Charco de los Clicos is a Natural Reserve bordering Timanfaya National Park. Regulations forbid swimming… unless, of course, you are Loana the Fair One and you come attired in a fur bikini.

The film production poster of Raquel Welch, in One Million Years B.C., an image that fueled the fantasies of 12-year-old boys everywhere. © 1966 Hammer Film Productions Ltd.

References:

[1] Alwyn Scarth, Volcanoes: An Introduction (Taylor & Francis, 2004)

[2] Hammer Film Productions Ltd. 1966

Official Trailer One Million Years B.C.: https://vimeo.com/125826115


Sailing is not just about the wind and the sea; equally important are the places where Flying Fish carries me.

Please click “Follow” at the bottom of this page so that you don’t miss a new update, and please consider sharing this post with others who might enjoy following the voyage of Flying Fish. I welcome your comments, and I will always respond when I have an Internet connection. I will never share your personal information.

You can follow the daily progress of Flying Fish, boat speed (or lack thereof), and current weather as I sail into the Atlantic by clicking this satellite uplink: https://forecast.predictwind.com/tracking/display/Flyingfish. A Bonus: Click the “Legends and Blogs” box on the right side of the tracking page for passage notes while I am sailing offshore. 

To see where Flying Fish has sailed since leaving Key West in 2017, click here: https://cruisersat.net/track/Flying%20Fish.

Instagram: FlyingFishSail
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Text and Photography © Jeffrey Cardenas 2021

Let this be a time of grace and peace in our lives   – Fr. John Baker

Volcanic Landfall

A new resort is built upon the lava plain of the inactive Caldera Riscada in Lanzarote, Canary Islands. Photograph: © Jeffrey Cardenas

Puerto Calero, Lanzarote, Canary Islands — The first impression of this landfall is at once welcoming and foreboding.

I am thankful for a safe passage, and I am in a secure place. Still, I cannot help but think of the volcanic disaster occurring on the island of La Palma, 200 miles to the west. Today, three weeks into the eruption of the Cumbre Vieja volcano in La Palma, portions of the cone collapsed and blocks of molten lava the size of three-story buildings rolled down the hillside into an industrial park.

I cannot imagine what it must be like to have the land under your feet tremble, and then watch the mountain above your village explode into molten rock.

On Lanzarote, the Las Montañas del Fuego erupted for six years beginning in 1730, and then again in 100 years later, resulting in the Parque Nacional de Timanfaya. From the deck of Flying Fish, I look at the Caldera Riscada looming over my landfall. All is quiet for now, gracias a Dios.

A solitary fisherman navigates his panga in the early morning light along the volcanic coastline of Lanzarote. Photograph: © Jeffrey Cardenas

Sailing is not just about the wind and the sea; equally important are the places where Flying Fish carries me.

Please click “Follow” at the bottom of this page so that you don’t miss a new update, and please consider sharing this post with others who might enjoy following the voyage of Flying Fish. I welcome your comments, and I will always respond when I have an Internet connection. I will never share your personal information.

You can follow the daily progress of Flying Fish, boat speed (or lack thereof), and current weather as I sail into the Atlantic by clicking this satellite uplink: https://forecast.predictwind.com/tracking/display/Flyingfish. A Bonus: Click the “Legends and Blogs” box on the right side of the tracking page for passage notes while I am sailing offshore. 

To see where Flying Fish has sailed since leaving Key West in 2017, click here: https://cruisersat.net/track/Flying%20Fish.

Instagram: FlyingFishSail
Facebook: Jeffrey Cardenas

Text and Photography © Jeffrey Cardenas 2021

Let this be a time of grace and peace in our lives   – Fr. John Baker

¡Vamos! Islas Canarias

Flying Fish charging into open water. The challenge, risk, and pure joy of being underway on another ocean passage. Photograph: © Jeffrey Cardenas

Into the blue again, into the silent water
Once in a Lifetime / David Byrne, Brian Eno

Thousands of sea miles have passed under the keel of Flying Fish since I set sail from Key West nearly four years ago. Still, the expectation of a new ocean passage remains as exhilarating as it was on the first day. The next leg of my journey begins soon, from Gibraltar to the Canary Islands, some 700 nautical miles southwest and five days en route.

There will be challenges; I will be 66 years old in a few months. I don’t move as quickly onboard, and I have lost some mobility and balance. These are ordinary issues associated with aging, but they are extraordinary when put into the context of a solo offshore passage.

There will also be risk; the passage along the West African coast is unforgiving and mostly without shelter. I will be traveling on a dark moon. Small Moroccan fishing boats setting nets must be avoided — as well as other boats emerging from the African coastline that may have more sinister intentions. And, in a bizarre twist of nature, there is an issue with aggressive killer whales intentionally colliding with sailing vessels just outside of the Straits of Gibraltar. Since March of this year, there have been more than 50 verified reports of orcas ramming sailboats. Biologists don’t understand why, but half of these encounters have been serious enough to disable boats and require towing to repair facilities ashore.[1]

Regardless of the risk, the pure and absolute joy of setting out on an open ocean passage cannot be overstated. In a world of rapidly diminishing nature, ocean voyaging allows access to one of the few unaltered places remaining on this planet. It is a world of silence and isolation. There can be long periods with no organic sound, generated light, or evidence of other human beings. The ocean provides a sense of timelessness. This is why I go.

I have been landbound for the past month in Gibraltar, but the time ashore has provided a much-needed health and wellness stop for both boat and captain. The sails went to a sailmaker in Tarifa for re-stitching. The captain went into a gym to address added kilos of body weight accumulated from epicurean excesses while cruising Sardinia, the Balearics, and the Costa del Sol. A Hungarian physical trainer in Gibraltar named Rita worked me back into shape.

The passage to the Canary Islands will be one of the final legs of this COVID-interrupted trip around the world aboard Flying Fish. The pandemic took hold of my itinerary two years ago. Now, I am slowly moving again as I anticipate the end of the Atlantic hurricane season. It is an above-average year for tropical cyclone activity. Rapidly warming sea temperatures are spawning stronger and more frequent storms.[2] Most late-season tropical cyclones form over Western Africa, south of the Canary Islands. I will monitor the weather (and the recent volcanic activity) carefully. My favorite sailing partner, Ginny, will join me on the passage from the Canaries to the Caribbean when the hurricane season ends in December. I hope to return home to Florida with Flying Fish in 2022.

Ironically, it is the return home that causes me the most uncertainty. As I sail toward the end of this journey, I wonder how difficult it will be to reckon with life after Flying Fish. In these four years, I floated in a bubble of unreality, immersed in the rarefied air of freedom and privilege while many others around the world could barely hold their heads above the water. I think of the anthem of entitlement, Once in a Lifetime, by songwriters David Byrne and Brian Eno:

“And you may ask yourself, ‘Well, how did I get here?‘”

While I may not fully understand “how I got here,” I am grateful for this time at sea. At the end of this journey, the transition from water to land will be my choice. There will be new challenges ashore during this time of uncertainty; re-socialization, commitment to faith, family, home, and community, and prioritizing my personal health. For me, a greater risk than any danger at sea would be spending the rest of my days in a chair in front of a TV with a cocktail in one hand and a bag of chips in the other. I will not succumb to that life of mediocrity.

I’m getting ahead of myself… For now, it is time to focus on the immediate passage forward. The boat is ready, and I am ready. The weather to Lanzarote looks good. I have route planning to avoid Moroccan nets, and contingencies in place for potential collision with whales. I will keep a sharp mind and maintain situational awareness. And I must stay onboard.

These are days that will sustain me.


Goodbye Gibraltar. The Rock is dissolving into the fog. Photography: © Jeffrey Cardenas

References:

[1] Iberian Orca, Atlantic Orca Working Group, www.orcaiberica.org

[2] NOAA National Hurricane Center

[3] Once in a Lifetime, David Byrne and Brian Eno, https://youtu.be/5IsSpAOD6K8


Sailing is not just about the wind and the sea; equally important are the places where Flying Fish carries me.

Please click “Follow” at the bottom of this page so that you don’t miss a new update, and please consider sharing this post with others who might enjoy following the voyage of Flying Fish. I welcome your comments, and I will always respond when I have an Internet connection. I will never share your personal information.

You can follow the daily progress of Flying Fish, boat speed (or lack thereof), and current weather as I sail into the Atlantic by clicking this satellite uplink: https://forecast.predictwind.com/tracking/display/Flyingfish. A Bonus: Click the “Legends and Blogs” box on the right side of the tracking page for Passage Notes once I am en route to the Canaries. 

To see where Flying Fish has sailed since leaving Key West in 2017, click here: https://cruisersat.net/track/Flying%20Fish.

Instagram: FlyingFishSail
Facebook: Jeffrey Cardenas

Text and Photography © Jeffrey Cardenas 2021

Let this be a time of grace and peace in our lives   – Fr. John Baker

Gibraltar & the Barbary Apes

The Rock of Gibraltar is home to Europe’s only wild primate, macaque monkeys, locally known as Barbary Apes. © Jeffrey Cardenas

Aboard Flying Fish, I sense the Rock before I even see it. Gibraltar remains hidden by dense fog until Flying Fish is just a few hundred meters offshore. Then, the Rock appears like a specter off the starboard bow. Huge and close. I have frequently felt the presence of places I have visited on this voyage, but few affect me as powerfully as seeing this monolith emerging from the foggy Mediterranean Sea. A Gibraltar landfall is a rite of passage for many ocean sailors.

Neanderthals walked here, as did the Cro-Magnons. Arriving later were the Phoenicians, Goths, Moors, Romans, and centuries of European powers. Overlapping many of those civilizations, one group of survivors remained established on the Rock–Gibraltar’s Barbary Ape.

The “Ape” is an Old World monkey species, a Barbary macaque, originating in the Atlas and Rif Mountains of Morocco and Algeria, 20 kilometers across the Strait of Gibraltar. Some scientists speculate that the monkeys may also be related to macaques that migrated 5 million years ago across southern Europe. Regardless of their lineage, Gibraltar’s Barbary macaques are iconic to the Rock. Wrote historian Alonso Hernanández del Portillo of Gibraltar in the early 1600s: “There are monkeys, who may be called the true owners, with possession from time immemorial.”[1]

I cannot sail past the Rock of Gibraltar without reacquainting myself with this wild band of free-roaming monkeys I first met some 45 years ago. Much has changed, but the Barbary macaques are still the main attraction in Gibraltar.

A popular belief holds that as long as the macaques exist on Gibraltar, the territory will remain under British rule.[2] In 1942, after the macaque population dwindled to just seven monkeys, Winston Churchill ordered their numbers be replenished from North Africa (in the midst of World War II and Rommel’s Afrika Korps). The monkeys became so important to Gibraltar’s interests that until 1991 their care was entrusted to the British Army, and later, the Gibraltar Regiment. A “Keeper of the Apes” maintained up-to-date records for each macaque, listing births and names and supervising their diet. The War Office in 1944 gave the macaques a food budget of £4 a month for fruit, vegetables, and nuts. Each macaque was issued a serial number with its name. The Gibraltar Chronicle would announce births: “Rock Apes. Births: To Phyllis, wife of Tony, at the Upper Rock, on 30th June 1942— a child. Both doing well.” The names would often be associated with someone of stature in British society, like Elizabeth, named for the Queen, or Winston, for Churchill. If Elizabeth or Winston, or any ill or injured monkey needed surgery or medical attention they were taken to Royal Naval Hospital in Gibraltar, where they received the same treatment as an enlisted serviceman.[3] Queen Elizabeth II and the Duke of Edinburgh, along with Prince Charles and Princess Anne, met the Barbary Apes while visiting Gibraltar in 1954. A photograph shows the Queen and royal family happily feeding the macaques.


Click on any photo for a slideshow of high-resolution images with captions showing the many personalities of Gibraltar’s Barbary Apes. All photographs © Jeffrey Cardenas


About 250 macaques remain on the Rock. Although the human population of Gibraltar numbers only 34,000 people, this tiny territory of 6.8 square kilometers recorded 11 million visitors in 2019 (pre-COVID). It is one of the highest tourist-to-resident ratios in the world, and many of those visitors come to co-mingle with the free-roaming Barbary Apes. These days if the Queen fed a macaque in Gibraltar, she (or anyone else) could be fined £4,000. That penalty, however, doesn’t stop tourists from acting badly.

Early one morning, I pack a bag of cameras and climb to the top of the Rock at Prince Philips Arch, where I hope to see a troop of Barbary macaques. When I arrive, there is already a gridlock of taxi vans disgorging a mob of tourists insistent on capturing selfies with a monkey. Prince Philips Arch is in the Gibraltar Upper Rock Nature Reserve, an official feeding station for the macaques, and it is stocked today with carrots, corn, and watermelon. The monkeys, however, are more focused on the bags of snack food, candy bars, and surreptitious peanuts in the possession of the tourists. There are squeals of delight every time a macaque jumps on somebody’s head or unzips a backpack. Two young men speaking Russian tease the macaques with a peanut butter sandwich. The men are shirtless and sunburned, and possibly drunk because one man slaps the open face of his sandwich onto the bare back of his buddy, and they howl with laughter as the macaques go berserk and chase them.

Tourism reached its peak in Gibraltar in 1985, when, after years of hostilities with Spain, the border finally reopened. A flood of visitors poured onto the Rock. Some 45,000 people entered Gibraltar within the first week, increasing to over 10,000 per day. Within six months, a million people had visited. By 1986, five million visitors a year were arriving in Gibraltar. Nearly everyone who came wanted to see the Barbary Apes. To make room for visitors’ cars on Gibraltar’s crowded roads, 1,000 old vehicles were rounded up in Gibraltar and pushed off the cliffs into the sea at Europa Point on the southern tip of the territory.[4] The number of macaques rapidly increased as a result of illegal feeding by tourists. It also led to an increase in aggressive behavior as the monkeys associated humans with junk food. The problem culminated in 2008 with the Government of Gibraltar ordering the culling of a rogue troop of monkeys that was breaking into hotel rooms and scavenging garbage cans. Researchers and animal rights activists protested the cull, but the Government justified it because overly aggressive monkeys would frighten tourists and damage the economy.[5]

More recently, the Government of Gibraltar says it is making efforts to crack down on human interactions with the macaques, including daily patrols and microchips in the monkeys. In addition to fines for feeding the macaques, a new law was passed last year, making it an offense to touch or interfere in any way with the monkeys. In the 20 hours over several days that I recently spent among the monkeys in Gibraltar’s Upper Rock Nature Reserve, I saw many tourists feeding, touching, and interfering with the macaques. Not once did I see any official presence or enforcement of the tourist misbehavior.

Later, I hike to an isolated promontory above Europa Point, between what the Athenian philosopher Plato called the “Two Pillars of Hercules”–the Atlas Mountains of Africa to the south and the Rock of Gibraltar to the north. I think of the prehistoric description of this piece of land by Gibraltar Museum evolutionary biologist Clive Finlayson: “While the rest of Europe was cooling, the area around Gibraltar back then resembled a European Serengeti. Leopards, hyenas, lynxes, wolves and bears lived among wild cattle, horses, deer, ibexes, oryxes and rhinos – all surrounded by olive trees and stone pines, with partridges and ducks overhead, tortoises in the underbrush and mussels, limpets and other shellfish in the waters.”

Gibraltar’s Barbary Apes are survivors in a rapidly changing world. Among the dense pines above Europa Point, I watch a troop of macaques interact, away from the melee of tourists. They forage naturally and groom each other, a sign of reduced stress. I watch a female macaque nurse an infant while a male moves close to gently participate in the parenting. This idyllic scene has me questioning whether my presence among the macaques also makes me part of the problem. I may not torment the monkeys with peanut butter, but I am, along with millions of other visitors, encroaching upon the space of a wild thing that was here first. I wonder: How can humans learn to interact with less impact and more equitably share this natural world?

In an 1887 satire by Jules Verne, the Spaniard Gil Braltar invades the Rock with a macaque troop after disguising himself as one of them. Drawn by George Roux. Credit: Public Domain

References:

[1] “Historia de la Muy Noble y Más Leal Ciudad de Gibraltar,” Alonso Hernanández del Portillo (1605-1610)

[2] “The Curious Case of the Last ‘Wild’ Monkeys in Europe,” Atlas Obscura, Dan Nosowitz, 2019

[3] “Gib Monkeys,” Internet Archive, 2011, Wikipedia

[4] “Gibraltar: British or Spanish?” Peter Gold 2012, Wikipedia

[5]  “Tourism Management: An Introduction,” Clare Inkson, Lynn Minnaert, 2012, Wikipedia


Sailing is not just about the wind and the sea; equally important are the places where Flying Fish carries me.

Please click Follow at the bottom of this page so that you don’t miss a new update, and please consider sharing this post with others who might enjoy following the voyage of Flying Fish. I welcome your comments. I will always respond when I have an Internet connection. And I will never share your personal information.

You can follow the daily progress of Flying Fish, boat speed (or lack thereof), and current weather as I sail into the Mediterranean by clicking this satellite uplink: https://forecast.predictwind.com/tracking/display/FlyingfishClick the “Legends and Blogs” box on the right side of the tracking page for en route Passage Notes. 

To see where Flying Fish has sailed since leaving Key West in 2017, click here: https://cruisersat.net/track/Flying%20Fish.

Instagram: FlyingFishSail
Facebook: Jeffrey Cardenas

Text and Photography © Jeffrey Cardenas 2021

Let this be a time of grace and peace in our lives   –Fr. John Baker