Brian Bonniwell and Claudine
Sun 26 Jul 2009 23:07
43:30.04N 16:25.98E
Claudine and boys duly departed in Cavtat.  This was not before Ben assisted the 46 metre Perini Navi "Klosters" disentangle her anchor from an adjacent boat's anchor chain.  The sight of Ben in our 'tiny' rib beneath the massive bows of Klosters was quite amusing. Anyway, Ben (and the skipper of WII!) received an acknowledgement from Kloster' Captain.  An invite on board wouldn't go amiss - will keep looking out for her!!  Shouldn't be too difficult as she has that GPS technicalogical marvel - AIS, which displays her position on our chart plotter.  As does her tender , Klosters 2!! 
I have now taken the boat from Dubrovnik to Split. Again not much wind. Stopped the night on Mljet Island and departed for Split at 0530 arriving at 1600 hrs. I decided to anchor in Kastela Bay and opted for Kastel Novi which appeared to be closest to Splt airport. The large bay is interesting in that it has seven villages  originating from the 15th and 16th centuries, and each with one or more Castles (Kastellas). Reminded me a little of Carrickfergus in Co Antrim and its Norman Castle. 
Kastel Novi was a bad choice.  Although pleasant enough to look at, ashore the small harbour was smelly - you know what - and it wasn't from boats - I was the only boat there with Black Water tanks firmly sealed.  As this wasn't enough, at about 10pm the local beach bar started its Friday music night - incessant throbbing 'music' which I call 'rap'.  This reverberated over the still water until the early hours of Saturday - I mean 0400hrs! The next morning I went exploring determined not to experience Saturday music night!  I found an anchorage even closer to the airport - literally less than 10 mins walk along a minor tar road leading directly from the airport terminal. Ideal for all the crew changes I am expecting via Split airport. On enquiring from the local beach bar, I was told that it was called Tsunami!  On reflection,  I think they must have meant the bar, and not the place, although later events leave me wondering.  I moved the boat to 'Tsunami' and was able to watch progress on the construction of a breakwater, probably the beginning of a new marina. Earlier readers of this diary will have noted my interest in all things JCB, as recorded in Lopud. Hear in Kastella they had two JCB's mounted on 'rafts' digging out the foundations for the breakwater!!
 Rachael and her two friends were due to arrive Easyjet at 2050 but when I got to the airport to 'meet and greet' the arrivals board showed a 50 min delay. By the time they cleared passport control it was gone 2300 hrs.  The walk to the boat proved easy with 'wheelie cases', but by then the wind had increased with an adverse change of direction.  Anyway, the four of us together with all cases filled the rib and we made the boat without mishap.  Soon the wind increased to 28 knots with large seas rolling down the Kastela.  A very sleepless night was had by, all accompanied by the sound of distant 'rap' music 4 Km away!  Later, when checking the anchor we noticed a bright glow coming from the surrounding hills. At first we thought it must have been a fire, but concluded that it was the glow of the distant town of Trogir.  What an introduction to three young girls who had never been on a yacht before!  I could not contemplate the thought of weighing anchor in the pitch black, with a crew who had hardly seen an anchor before!  Anyway, the anchor held with 40 metres of chain in 6 metres of water and things looked a lot better in the morning even though we seemed a lot closer to the windward side of that new breakwater!  But, that bright glow WAS a fire. The hill was ablaze and we were able to watch a fleet of helicopters collecting water from the bay in large 'buckets' suspended beneath, and dropping the contents onto, or ahead , of the advancing fire. Even more impressive, were two or three 'sea planes' which skimmed the surface scooping water into their 'tanks', before rapidly climbing and discharging the contents onto the fire!  This went on and on, only to be interrupted by the requirement of the aircraft to refuel at the local Split airport.  What a grandstand view.  If only I had a digital camera, you could have seen for yourselves!!  (Sorry about the lack of photos recently)
After a safety briefing, and an introduction and practice to some of the essential yachting 'skills' likely to be needed that day - fender knots, bowlines, warp handling, weighing and setting anchor, we departed 'Tsunami anchorage' and set sail for Split where we were required to change the boats 'crew list'.
Split harbour was very pleasant and extremely clean.  Unfotunately the 'historic' area was focused on the cruise ship tourists.  Instead, we found a 'Tommy's' supermarket and bought  provisions!
After lunch on board, we (expertly!) weighed anchor and set sail for Brac.  I could sense the envy emanating from the crew (mainly of super yachts) as we sailed past other anchored boats with three, 30 something, bikini clad crew!  Utopia!!
We are now anchored in Uvala Lucice on the South coast of Brac.  We had quite a job finding space.  I have noticed a considerable increase in the number of boats compared to Dubrovnik.  This maybe the location (near Split airport with more regular flights) or the fact that we are now into the height the season.  Whatever reason, I don't like it!!
We have had a  swim - warm water again, and the girls have gone to bed. Worn out after little sleep last night, an intense training program, and all that sunbathing on the foredeck. Apart from anchoring, its a bit like single handed sailing again!!
Regards to all
Brian and the '30 something' bikini crew -  Rachael, Donna and Alex