You might think leaving the country on April Fool’s day could be a dodgy proposition, but I had a really good flight from Auckland to Nice, via Melbourne and Dubai.I arrived to a chilly 9 degrees in the mid afternoon, a rude shock, having left Ohope still on temperatures around 20, even at night. Got the bus to Antibes and luckily Paul’s friend turned up with the apartment key soon after I arrived.I didn’t suffer too much from the old jet lag and had a fun few days catching up with friends. I had dinner with Ruth and Orges which was grand. So good to see them and hear all their news, especially their diving trip to Bali. Sounded marvelous. Fouche and I tried to get a night in Nice, in an Airbnb, to catch up after so long. But he got as far as the train station in Monaco, only to be called back to his ship by his boss, to baby sit the dog. We were fairly pissed off! Most Kiwis right now are going “WTF? Baby sit a dog? For 3 hours?” Yeah, well, we felt that too! By the time he was released from precious pooch duty the last train had gone, so that plan failed, lol. The joys of being a sailor for the rich!He’s done super well, having been promoted from deck /engineer to mate /engineer, so I’m really happy for him. But with that comes the extra responsibility, of course.Paul arrived back from the UK on the Friday after I arrived here. Great to meet him in person at last. I’m really looking forward to the season, working with him and Amy, our chef /stew. That’s all definite now and we’ve been shopping for the boat, getting uniform, medical kit etc etc. She’s a brand new Azumit Grande 25 called Lucky Wave, if you feel like googling it! It’s a private vessel so no chartering, which I’m quite happy about.Wren arrived here on Friday last, so we caught up over lunch and I’ve sent her CV off to a captain Paul knows. Fingers crossed for her.I had said to Fouche on Wednesday “what’s the chance of you getting a weekend off?” with zero expectation, but he did! So we hired a car, an Airbnb in Grasse and took off exploring for the weekend. Its been a nice chilled catch up, though I suspect he wishes it was a week, not a weekend! There’s an amazing old cathedral with parts of it dating to the 13th century. Very awesome. I finally have driven a left hand car on the wrong side of the road! Didn’t crash, though I got teased a couple of times!Back in Antibes now and this week we’ll likely head to Italy to join the boat. Then it’s off to Cyprus for a month or so. I’m really looking forward to it. Paul and I have been doing the passage planning, which I enjoy.So that’s all I’ve been up to! Not a bad start to the season over here. I just hope it warms up soon!