Tue 4 May 2010 10:40

The following morning the wind in the marina was South 32 knots with heavy rain and a low of 996 to the N of Menorca so we decided (without much effort) to stay tucked up in the marina for another night. The weather cleared just after lunch and the wind died down nicely but as we sat taking coffee on the quayside we notice large waves entering the marina and causing some disturbance among the locals. This surge was a result of the earlier storm so after a bit I returned to Siempre to find her charging up and down on the surge with one line parted. Further inspection revealed that the floating pontoon joints were beginning to break up!!! After a few minutes nervous wait, Jim and the girls arrived at the boat and we elected to go to sea before a lot of damage was done to Siempre. It was a bit of a game to get on board with all the movement but we managed and with some help from a couple of locals cast off and went out into the bay.

 As the other marina at Ajaccio was in a similar situation I decided (after consultation with the crew) to head off to Bonifacio (41.23.3N 009.09.8E). There were 20 ft. seas which, as the wind had dropped were not breaking, so although there was a lot of movement it was safe enough. We moored in Bonifacio at around 0130 the next morning during which the bow-thruster failed. On later inspection I found the forward bilge with at least a foot and a half of water in it which had immersed the B/T motor. The water found its way in through the anchor chain locker and drains. The bow being immersed in the large seas had allowed water in through the hawse pipe as well – a common Moody problem. All this meant a new B/T motor and some rubber gasket made from an old inner tube to be made up to stop the problem re-occurring, oh and a bill for £2300! For the meantime we continued without the B/T although I soaked it in WD40 and got some use out of it.