Sunday 21st September
Well not quite a perfect day but certainly a really good sail.
Up with the cockerel (must buy a gun) at 6.30am, raised the anchor and set off for Paxos around 6.50am. Bloody cold! Sarah was wearing 4 layers of clothes and I put on a waterproof jacket for the first time since 3rd June in Biscay! Quite a threatening sky but the forecasts were saying that the big winds that we had been promised were now going to pass by, down the Italian coast leaving us with a breeze and a big swell.
Motored up to Lefkas and passed through the canal (photos on www.rhbell.com) and out into the open sea for the 30 mile slog up to Paxos. This was where things improved though, as the breeze was rising slightly and was, very unusually, from the East North East which meant we had a perfect beam reach. We hoisted the full main and genoa and were instantly brushing the small waves aside and making a respectable 7 - 8 knots. The sun came out and Sarah was soon peeling off layers of clothes to end up back in a bikini sunbathing again!
Made very good time up to Paxos although the wind did die away as we approached the island. Moored up in the town and dived into Pan & Theo's for a quick but late lunch.
Met up with Yannis from Gaios Travel who was telling us all about his problems the previous Monday when Patty and her family were flying home. The big storm that we had further South had evidently been even worse up here and no ferries ran at all, to or from Paxos all day. This is a big turn round day for the island and there was complete chaos. Patty and co. managed to get places on the Seaplane which flies in almost any weather, but in all the excitement she ended up minus a suitcase. To complete poor Yannis' misery was the Excel collapse, so in addition to some of his clients missing flights, there were no other seats to be had as the airport was teeming with holidaymakers desperate for flights home as well.
Spent some time sorting out a load of photos for the website which are all posted up now (www.rhbell.com) which is getting harder now that Sarah has started taking more pictures as well!
Quiet evening in Paxos which seems almost empty now, although the Germans on the boat next door to us seemed to be in a party mode till quite late.