Peter, week 2

Dick and Irene Craig
Wed 9 Jul 2008 16:15

Wow!! The boat is a hive of activity this morning.

Peter has just unclipped all the cushions from outside and brought them inside. The power-washer and hose have been brought on deck, so that Peter can wash the boat. Dick is dismantling the windlass with a view to fixing the problem, whereby the chain counter only counts when we drop the anchor, not when we lift the anchor.

I hurriedly bring in the bed-linen which is hanging out to dry. I will hang it out again after the boat has been washed.

The boat did not get washed as often as I would have liked, while we were on the EMYR rally. This was probably because we were so occupied with excursions, passage making and partying. Not to mention sheer exhaustion from taking part in the afore-mentioned activities.

This is the third time that the boat has been washed since we left the rally. The first time, we paid a company in Herzliya, to wash the boat, while we were on the excursion to Petra. When we returned, I have to say that I was very pleased with what had been done. Even the stainless steel was shining. It was unfortunate that a cat with dirty feet, had subsequently strolled round the decks. The second time that the boat was washed, Peter and Caroline worked together to remove the build-up of dirt, dust and salt after the crossing from Israel. Peter is now heroically attacking the dirt, dust and salt, on his own. Once the boat is clean, it does make it infinitely better to remove the rust spots, a never ending job.

We are anchored in a delightful bay, having taken lines ashore. This tends to be the norm in this area as the sea is usually very deep, right up to the shore, where there might be just a few metres of water, less than 3 metres deep.

100 metres from our anchorage, along the shore, are several large clumps of reeds, stretching a couple of hundred metres. This is a sure sign of muddy, shallow water and mosquitoes, so we were pleased to notice that the local authorities take this very seriously and treat these areas very regularly, to eradicate the mosquitoes.

In the centre of the exit from the bay is a pretty island, with another, some distance off, in the background.

Towards the end of last week, I thought that the freezer had packed up. Certainly, we lost the contents, as all the meat, prepared meals and emergency bread supplies all defrosted. Thank goodness this hadn’t happened as we were leaving Tel Aviv. With a 70 hour passage ahead of us, that would have been most inconvenient.

Dick came to the rescue and found that, despite the gentle movement of the boat, the freezer socket had worked its way loose from the plug. This was a great relief as it is not always easy to find the necessary expertise while cruising around, particularly when not in a marina, which are few and far between in this part of the world, assuming there is a space for our catamaran, or any sort of services available.

We met an old friend of Peter’s while bay hopping, although it wasn’t quite as casual as it sounds. Dick managed to obtain the phone number from a Turkish friend and Peter was then able to call his friend and we arranged to meet.

En-route to Rhodes, we were gobsmacked to see 3 warships coming towards us from the watery horizon. They were soon in position with several other smaller boats. We were warned than firing practice was due to commence in just over an hour, for a period of 3 hours. There was no way that we could be out of the area for at least half an hour after the firing began. We switched on our Sea-me radar reflector, which enhances the signal, and we hoped would ensure that the warships could see us sufficiently well not to use us for target practice.

We encountered fun and games at Rhodes when we went into the main marina. We found a space large enough to take 3 boats our size, dropped our anchor and tied up ashore. Dick disappeared to take the boat papers and our passports to the customs and the police. Half an hour later, an irate employee of a local dive company, was ranting and raving at us to move immediately as 2 boats were due to arrive back in the marina imminently. I tried to explain that it was not possible for us to move the boat without the captain on board and told him the whereabouts of the captain, who by law, had to log us and the boat into Greece. There was more ranting and raving and then he made some telephone calls. Some sort of “harbor official” arrived on his scooter and told us that we had to leave as the boats were due back in 20minutes and we were taken up the space for one of them. I again explained the situation but to no avail. The man spoke little English. He demanded that I call the captain on the phone. I told him the captain had no phone with him and also repeated again the whereabouts of the captain.

Two boats arrived, a large wooden gullet moored next to us and a large power boat next to the gullet. The captain of the gullet said that he needed to plug into the electricity supply and that his cable would not reach the source because we were in his mooring space. I offered to lend him an extension electricity cable. He insisted it would not fit his cable or the power supply. We have a lot of different fittings for power supplies on the boat, it is essential when you are cruising. Almost every available power supply seems to use different fittings. I took out our standard cable, Peter took it ashore and it not only connected to the gullets electricity cable, it also connected to the power supply. Problem solved.

The captain on the gullet and one of his crew start to wash their boat, ensuring that our cockpit gets a good shower in the process. I ignore the situation and read my book.

At 3.30, the “official” states that we must be gone by 5pm when another boat was due to arrive. Five minutes later, Dick returns, we retrieve our cable and move off, finding refuge in the new, unfinished marina a few kilometers away.

Next morning at 9am we arrive back at the main marina and check in for 24hours though we know we will be gone by 6am next day.

We all walk ashore and eat a splendid lunch in a typical Greek café/ restaurant, hidden within the confines of what probably once housed a large market. Then it was time to wave goodbye to Peter as he climbed into his taxi which would take him to the airport.

Below, sunrise at sea and 3 different views from different bays while at anchor