Ragusa week 1 36:46.867N 14:32.777E

Charles & Maggie Bevis
Mon 29 Sep 2014 18:22
Well we’re here!

The marina in Ragusa is great, well organised and with a large, really switched-on and friendly expat international community, all living aboard their yachts, (most of them having sold up completely and living aboard 12 months of every year).  We’ve not had a chance to join in with them yet, but have met some delightful people, but in truth, the expat fun won't actually get going until after 1st October, when most of them arrive en force and in time for the commencement of their winter contracts with the marina.  We'll hopefully get to know more of them when we return in the new year.

The weather here is fabulous, blue skies and sunshine during the day, a very comfortable temperature and the humidity has finally lifted, which means the evenings and nighttime are really comfortable, in fact, a little chilly, but no hot water bottles required by us for sometime to come.
We have done all the heavy and dirty jobs, including a hull clean, dinghy clean and packed away, and both the sails down.  Fortunately the main pontoon here is massive, so the sails were easily laid out and folded; a real bonus and quite a change from last year!  We plan to re-use the No.1 genoa again next year and to run it into the ground.  The smaller No.2 sail, which we left at home, will be valeted at the Lymington sailmakers and sent out by courier to serve as as our first reserve.  The mainsail is in fair/poor shape now, but will be valeted here in Sicily ready for next year and we hope it will survive for a while longer, fingers crossed.  Shifting the sails is a big job for two of us, especially when neither of us can even lift the No.1 genoa!  However, we have survived the task and without damage to ourselves.

We have been ashore exploring locally.  Sunday was a glorious day so we went out on the bikes.  A very nice beach here and the locals were out in force enjoying themselves.  The Sicilians absolutely love their beaches and spend more hours sunbathing than you could ever begin to imagine, consequently, they’re all exceptionally brown.  We’ve noticed though that we hardly ever see them using sun lotions, a recipe for disaster at some point for some surely, even though they are used to year round sunshine.  We found a really nice seafront restaurant and enjoyed a magnificent lunch (with fresh swordfish as a main course) to celebrate the end of of our sailing season, washed down with a very good but inexpensive white wine.

At long last, Charlie has now finished the larger part of his supplementary report for BB, so tomorrow is my first full day off for quite some time!  Sadly, Maggie leaves this Wednesday as she must return to Preston, flying directly to Manchester, due to her father being very unwell.  After that, Charlie will have to learn how to cook for himself, heaven help him.  After Maggie’s departure, Charlie has just 10 days to service the engine, generator and outboard and other miscellaneous, not yet thought about tasks.  I’m sure Maggie will remind him in due course.

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