After the ‘Medicane’ in Pylos, I left for Zakynthos. The wind was not in my favor, but it would change during the day. So I left very early. But when I left the lagoon, the swell was bad. Right on the nose. After an hour I decided to go back to the lagoon and found a nice anchorage and caught some sleep. When I woke in the afternoon the wind had shifted, so I left right away.
That turned out to be a very good decision. I had a very nice night sailing and saw Zakynthos early in the morning. All night I had my fishing rod out. Twice it made that rattling sound from the wheel. It means there is a fish on the line. The first time the sound was very loud. That should be a big one. I started winding carefully, but suddenly it was gone. Hmm, I will need some more practice.
Beautiful clouds above me, with building waterspouts, but they did not develop. Cooler air prevented this, but still nice to see.
After some calculations I decided to pass Zakynthos and go for Vathi, my favorite village. I should be able to arrive in daylight.
I could notice the season is ending. Normally crowded streets where now enjoyable quiet. Most restaurants will close some day in October, some others wait for the weather to change. That could even be November.
The next day I left for Nydri to pick up some friends, they will join me for a week.
They arrived in the morning and the weather was beautiful. In October that is not always the case. It can get very humid with lots of rain, but now 28C and blue sky.
We sailed from Nydri to Nikiana. A small village up North. It was a very nice easy sailing. Nikiana has a small marina where we could find mooring on the quai.
This yacht anchored in the middle of the bay suffering severe damage. Probably the storm from 2 weeks ago. I tried to get some info, but nobody seems to know. So somebody left his boat here unattended and the sails where still on and partly in the water.
The village itself is nothing special, but very nice surroundings.
Me looking at my boat in the distance and collecting garbage during our walk.
With Northerly prevailing winds, this a nice starting point. The following morning we left South for Great Vathi on the island Ithaka, with it’s beautiful entrance.
A nice bay surrounded by the small village.
Good food, which rarely found, nice anchorage and certainly a nice place to wander.
My friends would like to do some cycling. So I prepaired the bicycles. Bicycles don’t like a salty environment. That is, everything on board seems not to like the salt water. Tools, ropes even stainless steel gets corroded.
And in Greece cycling can be challenging.
But also enjoyeable beaches.
From Vathi we sailed to Sami on the South end of Kefalonia. But leaving the bay of Vathi was a bit rough. We encountered some bigger waves then the girls where used to. At first they where fine, but after a while felt a bit seasick. I knew however, we could alter course soon and everything would become much more quiet and in the end we had a very nice sailing day.
In Sami is a nice marina where we found a good mooring on the quai.
The Melissani lake is nearby. Through an opening above this underground lake of 200 m2, the sun provides spectacular color shows. You see the most beautiful colors of blue and green and see the bottom all over through the crystal clear water.
While the ladies where visiting the lake, I stayed on the boat. An Englisman approached me and I could see he was very interested in my boat. It turned out he had a smaller catamaran on which he was living with his wife. And as always, curious how bigger boats looked like. I invited him in and we had a pleasant conversation about . . . boats.
Then it became late, so I had to hurry for some shopping I promised my guests I would do.
From Sami we sailed back North.
A very nice sailing and I tried fishing, but the timing was not at best.
We arrived at Sivota. The enclosed bay with olive trees arround the steep slopes is a pituresque place. A very busy bay, but since we arrived early in the day we could find some space for anchorage. But ships lay close together, so I did put some lines ashore to make shure the boat will stay in place. Yes, that is me at the end of the extended rope.
From here we sailed back to Nydri with a lunchstop halfway near a nice small beach, which you can only reach by boat. There are a lot of those small beaches and it feels like nobody ever visited them, which is of course, not the case at all.
The ending of a very nice week which lasted way to soon. We all enjoyed the landscapes, the sailing and each others company.
Staying in Nydri for me has some advantages. There is a very good nautical shop and the anchorage is very save. So I decided to start a big project. The electricity on the boat has very chaotic wiring and I very much would like to have that fixed, which means crawling through the boat to find out which is what. It took me a week, but I am very satisfied with the result. My knees where hurt and my hands warned out, but worth doing it.
One morning I had a visitor. The Englishman, which I met in Sami, came alongside in his dinghy. When you are staying longer times, you get closer to the people arround you. You are blending in so to say.
I left for Preveza on the Northside of the island Lefkas. I made a reservation early on for the winter season and here I sanded the boat thoroughly to apply some special coating next year. A coating that will last for several years instead of just one year. On the left you see a days work, but still not good enough. So I started all over as you can see on the right, as the guy, Less, adviced me to do so. Took me a week of sanding. . .
He will remove my escape hatches. I think they are dangerous. They are mounted way to low hanging in the water, so leaking all the time.
The engines will get some professional service and another firm will replace my shrouts. That’s the steel cabling to hold the mast.
So you thought it is all fun! Well a boat needs a lot of attention and not all the work can be done by others. Like the sanding. The yard offered me their services on that and showed me work they had been doing. Well to me that was unacceptable. The bottom of that boat he showed me was rugged and not smooth at all.
On sunday I will be leaving for NL. Finally holding my dearest wife in my arms is something I am really looking forward to.
Well, that’s it for this year then. I will be back in April next year and keep you posted. To me this blog is becoming a very nice diary.
By the way. Marcel, which I met in Southern Peloponnesos, mailed me back a couple of weeks ago. He did arrive in Gibraltar and would leave in a couple of days for the Canary Islands. So he should be there already.