If you want warm sunshine on a gloomy day in March, head over to Holland.
While England was sitting under heavy cloud a few weeks ago, we hopped across the North Sea to the Ijsselmeer to be greeted by light winds, glorious sunshine and temperatures in the mid-teens.
Our mission (surprise, surprise) was to test a boat. The plan had originally been to sail this particular model in Portugal, but a late change of plan saw us heading north and east rather than south. As it turned out, Holland was probably sunnier than Portugal and almost as warm. You can also go there and back in a day, even if it’s a day that’s more than 20 hours long. In this case it was one that involved travel by car, bus, plane and train as well as some un-scheduled off-roading in a Range Rover. Whatever boat testing may be, it’s rarely boring.
As for the boat – well, you will have to read the next issue of a leading yachting magazine to find what it was and what we thought of it (or come back here for an update in a couple of weeks or so). For now we will say that it’s a sporty cruiser of 40-something feet, built by a well-established European yard and not exactly at the budget end of the market.