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We finally arrive in our destination…
Will
11/26/2009, Marmaris, Turkey

Finally we've made it to Marmaris! When we were in Bodrum we thought that Marmaris was just around the corner, but when we looked at the map on our way to Marmaris, we realized the the city was really a two days sail away. So we spent that night in a Turkish city called Datca (see previous blog).

But now we are in the long awaited Marmaris and spending a lot of money. The money is mostly going towards repairs and other stuff. But we've been into town (mostly because our stove was getting repaired and we had to eat out) and shopped around there. Also our Italian friends are getting a new mainsail and spinnaker (a big sail to sail downwind with) here in Marmaris.

We are right now anchored off of the marina and plan to move to the main town tomorrow.

On to Marmaris!!!!!!!!!!
11/22/2009, Datca, Turkey

Today started off with no wind. It was very calm and we had to motor most of the way along. But, about ¼ of the way through, we got some wind. So up went the spinnaker. (My dad likes to fly the spinnaker whenever he can.) But soon down came the spinnaker when the wind died. But to tell you what happened before the spinnaker came down...

My dad had come down to get some almonds and realized that there was lots of pinkish water in the bilge!! Now, wherever that came from, we couldn't tell; until we remembered that the forward macerator pump (poop pump) was leaking (it had started leaking the day before). But soon we had traveled far enough off shore to dump our holding tanks. Luckily, the forward macerator pump still pumped and we were able to negate any further leakages.

But it was a very, shall we say, 'tense' time. We had to pull up the main floor-board which involved moving a bench to get to a bilge compartment that could not be accessed any other way (we are still wondering whether we should seal the compartment off or not). And then we had to pull pink (or rather 'brown') water out of the bilge! It was messy, but nothing unusual as we've been into the bilge very often recently (as a result of various leakages).

But we made it into Datca (I couldn't find the proper Turkish symbol, so the 'c in Datca' is supposed to have a curly-cue underneath which makes the 'c' sound like a 'ch'.) safely and we are now at anchor. It is a cute town, kind of like Serifos, with a small marina and a downtown area. But we plan to move on tomorrow; either to Simi, a nearby Greek island, or to Marmaris. We are thinking of staying at Simi because we have a list of good places to see. The list came from a marina manager in Athens who was really nice.

P.S. I think that Turkey is greener than Greece, if you ever want to visit one of those countries.

50 miles
Will
11/15/2009, Bodrum, Turkey

We left Naoussa on 11-9-09 (?) and sailed down to Amorgos. Amorgos is south of Paros and the wind was from the W-NW so we had a good run down there. We soon arrived in Amorgos Town and stayed there for 1 night. But in the morning we got a forecast from some people that we had just met saying that the wind would come from the N and NW. The bay of Amorgos Town is exposed to that wind so we decided to move on to Levitha, another island close to the Dodecanese.

So we set out. But, we had gotten a forecast of Force 6 (22-27 kts.) and were going to take things carefully. So we untied and stared to motor out of the bay. Well, we soon figured out that that was a bad idea. We had come into somewhere around Force 7 (28-33 kts.) winds and HUGE waves. The waves were the bad part. We had probably 8 foot waves on our beam.

But, for some reason, we thought that the wind would let off eventually once we got around this one point. So we fought on. However, it soon came apparent that we would have to turn back. So we turned around and headed in to harbor. There was only a slight problem; we had lost our dinghy! 

Soon, we spotted it. It was about a 5 minute boat ride in the storm. So we pulled out the boat hook and made about 10 passes at the dinghy before we finally caught it, in the process bending our boat hook (luckily we had a spare, but the spare didn't extend properly). Since both of the D-rings for towing had pulled out (that's how we lost it), we tied it up by the other bow line, the one for sitting at anchor. Off we went again but we hadn't gotten far before my mom noticed that our dinghy was gone again (the knot that we had used to tie it up with had come undone)!  So we took off into the storm again to find our dinghy a second time.

This time it was only a minute or so before our dinghy was sighted. So, 3 foot boat hook at the ready, we made a few swipes at it. The first time we missed. But on the second try we got it. Luckily the dinghy never came off again and so we didn't have to use that boat hook again. But, I think that we'll be tying up our dinghy more securely after that episode!

We made it safely into another harbor (I didn't need to tell you this. If we hadn't, I wouldn't be writing.) and had a pleasant stay there until a fisherman came up to us to tell us to get off of his dock and go somewhere else. With my dad being nearly sick and the rest of us really tired, he put up a fight. So luckily we didn't move. But that fisherman would be like an extremely annoying dog our whole stay in that town.

Our plans after the storm had died down were to sail directly to the Dodecanese, a 50 mile (hence the title) trip to one of the group called Kalymnos. But this time we had a great sail, interrupted only when a fisherman forced us to jybe. But when we arrived near Kalymnos and its neighboring island Leros, we soon found ourselves heading for the wrong island! But our plans had suddenly changed at that moment and we found that we were going to stay at Leros for the night.

We got up early and headed out of the anchorage at around 8 a.m. We had about 30 miles to go, but we were excited to get to Bodrum. So we were off. The wind built continually that day, but as we were going downwind, it didn't really matter.

Bodrum!! It was an interesting entrance we made to the harbor. First off, we got lost the last 5 miles coming into Bodrum and we started going up and down like we were drunk! And then, when we came into the marina, we hadn't hailed them on VHF channel 73 and so we didn't know where to go! But, on our way out, my dad hailed the marina and we were told to med tie up on to the quay near the customs office (we didn't want to stay a night. All that we wanted to do was to get checked in to Turkey.).

*********************************

So that is my account of what happened since Naoussa. Since then we haven't done a whole lot except to go to West Marine and buy a boat hook, 3 heads, and a few other assorted items. There is a castle nearby and we will go to visit it on Tuesday (it's closed on Mondays).

P.S. I'm so sorry that I had to feed you all this information in one blog. I just couldn't get on the computer and remember to blog very often since Naoussa.

What??!!! Another storm!!! III
Will
11/06/2009, Naoussa, Paros

Sorry about the title. I didn't really know that we'd end up getting 3 storms when I first started with the title of "What??!!! Another storm!!!!"!!!

Well, there's been a change of plans today. Our original plans were to go to either Naxos or Amorgos. My dad wanted to go to Amorgos but we soon realized that Amorgos was too far away to sail to today. So we started to get ready to Naxos. But, my dad had second thoughts on going to Naxos and reconsidered it. I'm sure he's glad he did because we're planning to stay here.

My dad just realized that the dinghy throttle cable that he had once thought ready to break is perfectly fine. Now he has a spare throttle cable! It always seems that the only parts that break are the ones that we don't have spares for!

The photo is of the church here in Naoussa. I think that not many cities get such a big church and that Naoussa is getting a favor from the Greek government.

11/15/2009 | Bill Burris
Will,
Keep up the good work on your blog. Hopefully I will start to understand the "sailing" terms. I have a couple of packages heading your way. One mailed the week of Nov. 2nd & the other last week. The castle overlooking the harbor in Turkey is awesome!!
Mr. Burris
11/26/2009 | Will Nelson
Hi, Mr. Burris! If you want any terms explained, let me know. I'll also try to simplify in my typing.

Where did you send the packages to? Just checking!

Will
What??!!! Another storm!!! II
Will
11/04/2009, Naoussa, Paros

As you can tell from the title we've just had another storm; this time from the S-SW (the last storm came from the N). This time, however, we decided to weather it in the marina. Unfortunately for us, the marina has a wide mouth that is very exposed the the N-NW -- which is exactly where the wind came around to!! But, as of right now, there is not even a breath of wind.

Again, we're waiting for more packages (how many times have I had to put "package(s)" in my blogs?), this time for a package from Jerry and Laura (the Valeske/Sullivans). But while we wait here we're going to send out some packages to friends back in Seattle.

My dad has just bought a Sudoku book and has finally met his match. Even on the easy level he made mistakes!! (Don't tell that to him, though. He still get some of the "Too difficult" [rough translation] right!!) It has gotten him off of a little electronic Sudoku game that we got him some years back.

What??!!! Another storm!!!
Will
10/29/2009, Naoussa, Paros

First off, I'll tell you the meaning of the title. The title means that we're about to move off to anchorage while we wait for a Beaufort Force 8 wind (apparently it'll get real rough in the marina when the storm hits). We'll be anchored in the north bay of Naoussa (Naoussa has protection from any wind) hopefully out of the way of the full fury of the storm. It'll be just like last storm except that we'll be in a different anchorage. (Golly, I sure hope so!!!)

Right now we're waiting for a(nother) package coming from the windlass people. That is the only thing keeping in chains and shackles here in Paros. Hopefully it will arrive during or after the storm.

Got to go out to anchor!

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