5th to 6th July - Porto Vecchio to Anse de Cannella (and it had all been going so well.....)

Bali Hai
Neal Stow
Mon 6 Jul 2009 22:46

With John leaving early on 5th July, my cousin Greg and his son Ben arrived that afternoon.  I should have known what to expect when the e-mail setting out his flight arrangements said that he was arriving on Monday 6th July and then he turned up on the Sunday.  What made his early arrival even more surprising was that after picking up his hire car at Ajaccio, Greg realised that he had neither map nor GPS but nevertheless decided to navigate his way across the island.


After he arrived Greg said that he and Sue had been closely following the Bali Hai log but were disappointed that it seemed to have become so politically correct this year.  I said that it was not a question of being more sensitive to crew's feelings but more that the crew this year had been of such high quality.  However, with Greg's arrival I felt that things were about to change.


As Rob later observed, Greg seems to function in a world his own: immediately forgetting the "no drinking while sailing" rule, the first thing he did when having lunch at sea was to open a can of beer, he is incredibly messy: books, sunglasses, phone, wallet would just be left scattered around the boat and then he would be constantly wondering where he had put something.  Much of our week would be spent at anchor without access to water or shore-power; we would then discover that Greg's idea of conserving water is to go swimming five times a day - unfortunately each swim would be followed by a full 10 minutes under the transom shower to clean the salt off.   


The night of Greg and Ben's arrival we headed out for a final meal with Jamie and Tom and afterwards Jamie invited us back to Shamen's Drum for a final drink. Greg took Ben back to the boat first but then managed to fall asleep in the cockpit before leaving the boat - and he remained there all night.


After a trip to the supermarket for provisions the next morning we set off for a short trip up the coast to the anchorage of Anse de Cannella before the long trip to Elba the following day.  Ben helmed for a while and as the last time he was on board demonstrated an excellent sense for steering the boat. 


Cannella is an attractive bay with a beach and we all swam ashore then walked along the beach before returning to the boat for a barbeque.  Emma decided to swim the long way back to the boat and, so as not to be out-done by mere woman, Rob and I were forced to follow.  


The meal comprised chicken à la Tina, of course, and some hamburgers made by Rob - which for someone who claims to have no cookery skills were remarkably tasty.  The food was accompanied by a lovely local wine.  Unfortunately Greg, who has the agility of a drunken hippo, managed to spill two glasses all over our brand new stone coloured cockpit cushions (apparently in revenge for wine being poured over Sue's dress at an earlier family party).