TO SICILY, ITALY, IN JULY 2022, 37.03.40N, 15.17.00E
Restless of Auckland
Roland and Consie Lennox-King
Sun 17 Jul 2022 15:48
19 June we were in Palma, Mallorca, with Oliver and Keir aboard, and talked about where to head to over a dinner of octopus, and a local Albarino wine.
The next day we provisioned, refuelled, filled up with water, and left for Playa de Palma Nova for a cooler night than in a marina.
21.6 we sailed 37.2nm to Porto Petro, where we stayed on a mooring for the night, before sailing 58.85nmiles to arrive in Menorca. We had a big tuna on the line, but did not manage to get it on board, even after an hour and a half of playing it, it had not tired, and when it saw our 4 faces, took off with hook line, gaff and sinker.
22.6 we anchored in Cala Taulera, beside a huge fort: La Mola Fortelesa Isabel Il, and were greeted with a “Kia Ora” from kiwi Brett and his wife Maria, and crew Matt, on their large charter gulet ‘Black Marlin’. Oliver and Keir walked around the huge fort, built to intimidate, rather than to defend. The big guns were only fired once.
We had been having trouble with our alternator, so walked into town to ‘Pedro’s’ to see if they could fix it, but no luck there. Maria is an engineer, so she had a look at it, but could not identify the problem.
Maria and Brett said there would be a big yacht race around the harbour and out to sea the following day, and invited us to come and watch on their gulet. We had a wonderful day aboard, with local Spanish wine and food prepared by Maria. An English yacht,‘Atlantis’ arrived, and Andy came aboard, and they all later came to ‘Restless’ for a meal.
The next day Andy offered to look at our alternator, and found a very corroded connection, another legacy from our 2 years Covid stay at Sant Carles de La Rapita boatyard, with water sitting in the bilges. He changed the connection, and with some persuasion, got everything working again. Andy was on his own, waiting for his wife Fiona, and a new crew member to join him, so he joined us for dinner. Stormy weather with sirocco winds was predicted, so we all stayed in this protected bay at Cala Taulera.
28.6 we went ashore to Illa del Rei, originally a Hospital on an island, now restored as an Art Gallery and tourist site, complete with medicinal gardens and Hospital museum. Oliver bought us an excellent lunch under the olive trees, and Andy made him his honorary crew, gave him an ‘Atlantis’ tee-shirt. We gave Andy a ‘Restless’ tee-shirt. The following day we walked around the top of Menorca island, and Oliver took us to a Menorcan restaurant, ‘El Rais’ for a Farewell meal, before leaving the next day to return to Canada.
Keir and I did our laundry, and very embarrassingly ran out of fuel on our way back to ‘Restless’. It would have been a Very long row back, but we luckily got a lift and our new friends looked around the boat and said they would visit us in NZ one day!
We had more stormy weather, but finding a weather window on 3 July, decided to refuel and set off for Sardinia at 1400. With little wind and seas we motorsailed the 223.4 nmiles to Porto di Malfatano, in 40.5 hours, with at least half a knot of tide with us most of the time.
When we set off at 0554 the next morning, we saw that Andy had anchored ‘Atlantis’ 100 yards astern, having arrived during the night with his new crew, Freya.
We again motored with little wind and flat seas, to arrive after 170 nmiles 27.5 hours later in Favignana, having more problems with our muffler and a lot of water in bilges, again caused by the muffler sitting in bilge water for 2 years.
We tied up to a mooring in a marine reserve, and met up with a young family Matthew and Meredith, from Singapore, on charter boat ‘Nirvana’, and skipper Aramis. We walked into the town in 36’ heat and came back laden with fish, meat, fruit and vegetables.
10.7 Andy on ‘Atlantis’ came into Favignana with his crew Freya, and had a meal with us, he had caught a tuna, Roland filleted it, and he gave us some. He offered to look at the engine. Roland had made some repairs, but water was still coming in, and he agreed we would need to find a welder at our next stop.
12 July at 2215 we motored 46.5 nmiles in 10 hours to arrive in Sciassa, a fishing town, and checked into a marina, Circolo Nautico Il Corallo for 3 nights. We found a welder, he took the muffler off, cleaned and welded it, and refitted it for us. It now appears this did not entirely fix the problem.
16 July, after filling up with fuel, we set off at noon, to motor the 130 nmiles to Siracusa, with up to a knot of current with us, we arrived 17 July at 1050, and anchored in the bay by Ortiga, where we had anchored in May/June 2015, before and after we had sailed to Malta.