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Date: 02 Oct 2012 12:18:00
Title: Grand Harbour, Siracusa

The leading lights showing the trouble-free way in and out of Grand
Harbour are brilliant. Grand Harbour is a good place to drop the hook
because it resembls a big lake about 2 mile across giving virtually
all-round protection. I've droped our hook towards the northern byte
and well off the shore,behind whish I can see Siracousa town to my
north and east. To my west is open Sicilian countryside and there's
just a hint of urbanisation looking south.
I had our hook concreted in the seabed by about 0230 then shower, beer
and bed. Unexpectedly awoken by someone banging on our hull just
before 7? My first attempt wearing my shorts resulted with two legs in
the one hole (comical!). Hastened by some more banging and shouting,
and one leg in each hole, I unbattened the hatches suitably presented
myself to see what all the fuss is about? I was met by two fishermen
in boat with pots on board. One of them pulling frantically on a line
(seemingly attached to he seabed beneath Ticketeeboo). The other
spluttering gibberish, which I assume meant "You've anchored over one
of our hidden pots and we're frightfully sorry to have to disturb you
Sir"? It didn't take long for me to get the first 50-odd metres of
chain up (with the fisherman pulling like heck on his pot-line)
although in the end I had to tell them to wait a little because I
was now desparate for my early morning pee (remembering the beer) and
needed to start the donk to motor our anchor out the concrete seabed!
Our anchor was almost at the surface when the fisherman finally pulled
his line free. All that fuss for a sprawny little crab, which nearly
got away! Everyone's happy, except the crab. All that was left was for
me to get our hook back in the concrete as well after, as before.
Checked-in first on Mednet at 0730 then Dragnet at 0800. Great to hear
so many ex-Kemer friends as well to talk to new friends. These people
show genuine care for other sailors underway. Pam (s/y Eirene) even
announced congrats for my announced safe arrival this morning.
My view of Sericusa and the old town 'Ortiga' has a likeness of
Venice. The cone-shaped roof of the modern cathedral is similar but
steeper than Paddies Wigwam (Liverpool's Catholic Cathedral) and the
castle, Castello Maniace, which guards north side of the entrance, is
stunning.
Weather forecasts warning westerly F7 along the Sicily straights
(between S coast Sicily and Malta) would make immediate progress a
nasty passage with strong winds and weather on the nose for best part
of half a day. Hence I'm tending to stay put for at least next 2 days
and until at least early hours Thursday morning . (If anyone wants me
send a good pidgeon!).
No pics for time being because I'm on Kindle (helping Dan Brown find
hidden solutions to mind-boggling symbols).
News from home ............... Babies are making fuss of My Lover and
asking for Granddadddykinz. Michael has finally made it into Ormskirk
Golf Club (without needing a letter from God afterall! Although with
much help from some very kind and supportive neighbours of ours.) Our
builbing project continues to progress and grow (what would we do
without Paul moving things along well and whilst unfinished for now,
should be all done and dusted before Christmas?). Jennifer is
perfecting baking blueberry muffins for my next homecoming? Rachel is
patiently waiting for our next new baby Grandchild to make his/her way
out and draw first breath after wondering how it all started?
Being on the hook it's time for brunch (beer-unch)!


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