British farmers entertain

Moxie - Beck Family Adventure
Mike, Denise, Asia and Aranya Beck
Sun 20 May 2012 19:19
A pretty non eventful week really.
Fisher Panda engineers here in Mallorca confirmed water in the engine again, but won’t cover any repair because ‘as we know the installation is correct’.  FP factory won’t cover repair as it is an installation fault.  I’ve told FP to get it off my boat and to refund me all my money.  The nightmare.. it continues...  I’m not sure I hate anyone badly enough that I would recommend this product to them.  FP agent in UK has quoted ‘rest assured we will get this sorted for you one way or another.  My reply ‘ To date, one way has been I pay for a repair and continue having problems, another way is I pay for a repair and continue having problems, clearly neither of these are acceptable’.
We are currently anchored in Palma Nova, popped around to Santa Ponsa for a night to avoid some weather and then straight back the next day to avoid lots more.  So it’s blowing 20kt all day today and two more.  Plenty of fun in the anchorage with at least one boat per hour dragging anchor, tonight could be interesting with the forecast tipping 28kt but at least it is calm.  Calm does have the drawback of being perfect conditions for the wakeboard school though.
Bit of fun in Santa Ponsa, our pedallo is still there high and dry by the way.  We rocked into the familiar anchorage, chose our spot and dropped the hook.  Behind us is a 30 foot British flagged Bavaria with two chaps upping anchor.  They motored past and abused me for stealing their spot, they were just about to drop it there??  With an apologetic smile and a wide circle of arms I demonstrated several acres of alternative space and apologised.  We then watched with much amusement as they ploughed furrows all around us, finally coming up sound but a few metres away, but behind, us.  By this stage I had unpacked and inflated our tender. 
Let me explain their technique, I think perhaps they were farmers.  First choose (in my opinion) the worst performing anchor you can find – a CQR, it looks like a plough.  Find your spot, put the head into wind – all good here.  Check depth, drop anchor to bottom, add as much again chain to achieve a 45 degree angle (so about 6 metres in 3.5 depth should do), nail the throttle in reverse and back up 50 or 60 metres.  Scratch your head, stand on bow staring into water, repeat procedure.  So this must be about five furrows now, time to plant the seed?  No, next step is tie a tripping line to the anchor, find your spot, using tripping line jiggle the anchor into a position that looks like it might dig in (not sure how this works when water is not shallow and clean).  6 metres chain, full reverse... repeat procedure.  Our chaps succeeded on the second, manually positioning anchor technique.  Hats off to them, quite extraordinary skill demonstrated here because I’d not get that technique to work, ever.  OK so now you are anchored, oh 10 metres or so from the 50 footer – that’ll be fine. 
So they are settled in, we are ready for town so we pop over in the tender offering another apology and quick hello, again they are rude to me.  And could I check that they are dug in (they have let out more chain now).  Next morning the wind has turned 180, gentle 5kt I suppose.  So now they are in front and for whatever reason lifting anchor while reversing at 90 degrees across the bow of Moxie.  I can only gather in the clear morning water they spotted an unploughed part and were making good.  Needless to say they managed to hook our chain.  More lessons in store for the incredulous Moxie crew, when snagging another yachts anchor abandon the wheel – go to bow – stare into water – ignore requests of ‘ GO ASTERN NOW YOU ARE DRIFTING RIGHT ONTO ME’.  Watch as Moxie crew scramble for fenders.  After bouncing off Moxie anchor chain, come right alongside, fend off with hands, explain the obvious, though missing the incompetence part.  Finally get clear, untangle stupid tripping line from around keel, repeat previous days anchoring antics.  Seemingly ignore the fact that there’s a lot more room in the anchorage now as everyone else is clearing out to avoid the incoming weather (3 solid days of be anywhere other than Santa Ponsa weather).  We upped anchor, went and topped up the water tanks and by the time we finished the 12 - 15 boats at anchor last night were gone, there was now just one, - British farmers on a 30 footer in a half ploughed harbour.
Mallorca Palma 2012 001
Mallorca Palma 2012 008
Halyard swinging
We managed to meet up with our French/Aussie friends for a couple of hours, Bianca stayed played with double As on the beach for the whole afternoon.    We tried going to the marina that they are based in (while it is affordable) but were turned away as it was full.  The marina fees double in June through September.  We did find a nice anchorage for dinner though we were chased off after an hour or so by the harbour master.   Unfortunately Jean-Michel and Rhona left back for Morzine today to ready their business for the summer season.
Denise has been studying hard for her MCA on board ships medical certificate, she passed the exam but does not meet the prerequisite with a RYA first aid so needs to complete another (MCA) course before getting the certificate.  Next exam is in June.
We’ve seen dolphins twice more (not counting the daily performances at marine land where we anchored for a few days).  Those poor, poor animals in there, four of them in a swimming pool, with every leap they see a sea that they’ll never swim in. 
(photo from last year)
Aranya caught her fish, 3 fish in 3 seconds, but then it’s 30 minutes before they get brave again. We caught one more but decided due to the awful pollution in that area that they were not of the dinner variety.  Guitar has finally seen light of day!