Mor Toad / Moy Toad
David and Jocelyn Fawcett
Wed 11 Oct 2017 14:37
We set sail south after a quick walk into Catania yesterday morning before breakfast. Crossing the roads anywhere in Sicily even at zebra crossings which sometimes are barely visible on the road is a ' wing and a prayer' that the cars will stop - mostly they do but sometimes not and you really do have to have your wits about you - this morning was no exception with the commuter traffic. We needed to get some money, post our postcards which we'd had for 2 weeks but both struggled to write and get stamps for them and to buy a little more fruit - the peaches are delicious and freshly picked walnuts - ' belissimo' along with fresh mozzarella.
The forecast was wind from the south so on the nose again but in the event from the east and we had a great sail across the bay to the anchorage we were aiming for - 8.5 knots at times. We weren't sure whether it was going to be just a lunch stop or suitable to stay overnight. Having had lunch and checked several weather forecasts we decided to stay put and in the event it was a relatively calm anchorage with minimal swell.
Sailing across the sea changed from green to turquoise to midnight blue - quite dramatic . On shore were long sandy beaches gone were the volcanic cliffs and inland fairly flat too ( most of the sailing along the north coast and the islands and down as far as Catania has been mountainous interior). Mount Etna still very dominant but behind us now.
The anchorage was at a place called Brucoli - at the end of a small river and at the mouth a derelict castle and small lighthouse ( still functioning) . The village was a row of coloured houses along the shore with balconies over the sea and on the other side of the bay individual houses with gardens down to the shoreline.
After lunch David and I launched the dinghy and went ashore first going up the river . Back to limestone cliffs and various pleasure craft and fishing boats moored along the side.
We pulled the dinghy up onto a small beach and went and explored the town basically 3 parallel streets the one immediately behind the waterfront properties which turned out to be mostly restaurants and bars but all very very quiet barr a few men in front of some of the bars. Few shops and certainly none of the tourist tac which was a pleasant surprise. The other surprise was painted houses and many with murals on them instead of the usual crumbling walls, peeling paint and graffiti.
Parked on the waste ground near where we'd left the dinghy were two camper vans from Poland and two Italian ones. After getting back into the dinghy we had a quick whizz round the bay and then back to the boat fora G and T and supper. In many of the places we have visited Bells from the many churches in each town and village have sounded out - in Riposta many sounded cracked and definitely not in sync time wise, in Catania again not in sync but a better sound but in this village at 7.00pm the bells played a tune for at least 2-3 minutes - a pleasant surprise.
After a swim and breakfast we took up the anchor and set sail for Siracusa. Big question would we get a sail ? We were warned by several people before we came to the Med. that winds were unpredictable and it would seem weather forecasts also.
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