The passage from Pantelleria to Hamammet took us nine and a half
hours with a southeasterly wind with speed 19 to 28kts. Our speed
was 8-8,8kts and our course 256deg.
The three last hours of the trip was with big waves that had
developed 500nm behind. These last three hours I was
steering the boat and had felt a very strange feeling on the wheel, with
difficulty to steer, feeling the rudder very heavy and frequently a strange
vibration, increasing at certain time and then stopping.
We opened the aft lazaretto to check if something was tangled on the
quadrant or on the steering cables but everything was ok. I was worried and
thought we may had picked up something without figuring out what. Checking from
the stern couldn't see anything. So, I hoped to arrive in Hamammet safely and
see there what happened.
We arrived in Hamammet port at 21:00 already dark
and we were asked to go alongside the dock close to the port
entrance to be close to the offices and the authorities building. Took us an
hour plus to do ‘’free pratique’’ and register in the Marina office. The
officials impressed us with their brand new buildings and their politeness and
of course their impeccable French.
I have to say that Christiana was treated like a queen, our
visit at Hamammet started with a good omen!
We will not write about the Marina, you will judge by
yourselves when we add the pictures.
When Christiana and I returned to the boat (only 25meters away from
the buildings) the remaining crew told us that they had found a blue jerry can
and lots of a bleu plastic rope coming from below our stern and they had
pulled it out (at least 100meters) but they couldn’t cut it since it was tied
under the rudder.
I dived with a torch and was surprised to see that the rope
was around the rudder and on one side there were tight branches of a palm tree
(see the phots below).
After inspecting well the rudder, shaft and propeller, evrything been
ok, I decided to cut the whole thing. We were very lucky I thought that had
tangled only the rudder and not the prop and shaft.
Pictures was taken so you can see what we had been trawling the
last 3 hours a part of a palm tree!!!
The marina dinghy showed us where we
will berth assisted tighing and then went for dinner in a restaurant 100m away -
good fish and lobster to celebrate our stepping on the Continent of
1 Sailing full sails
2 Hoisting Tunisia's flag and Free
3 Oil rig 16nm away from Hammammet
4 The dive's
5 The diver after