Bali Hi
Kath - Cloudy, 25C, F5 East
Mon 21st May 2012, Ormos Bali - Crete

Not a good day so far. We left Rythymno for Iraklion knowing it was likely we would be motoring into an Easterly- very unusual for Crete. But the wind and swell both built, until we were bashing into the waves and only managing 3 knots at full revs. Sailing was no better- although we sailed well reefed at 5 knots our beating zig-zag course was taking for ever.
So we diverted into what would be a lovely bay, if the sun was shining. Yarona refused to turn and go backwards, so we berthed bows to in a tiny harbour. Barrie managed a flying leap onto the quay- why is there no one to take your lines when you really need it? The skipper of the tripper boat that came in an hour later got a round of applause from his trippers.
Two hours later- we are feeling much happier, having clambered off the bow and had a beer in a village cafe.

2012- Greece, Crete
In my dreams!
Wed 16th May 2012, Chania

How do explain this to Kath? Arabian pirates, hareem to go, or a call centre doing staff training?

2012- Greece, Crete
Up against it!
Tue 15th May 2012, Chania - Crete

We had a great sail yesterday despite having to motor for a couple of hours at the start of the day. Once we had wind it kept building giving us a blast of a sail and an average boat speed of about 7.5knots. Unfortuately by the time we arrived in Chania harbour we had a steady F6 with some F7. Our boat is difficult to park in normal conditions but with F7 on the beam it was a bit of a nightmare. We eventually managed to get alongside a wall.

The wind returned in full force today pinning us hard against the wall and giving us a permenant tilt. Thank heavans for fenders!

Despite crowds of tourists Chania is a really impressive place with many historic buildings dating back to the time of Venetian rule. The ship builing halls are pretty amazing but there are many other fine buldings including the one behind our boat!

2012- Greece, Crete
Island Magic
Sat 12th May 2012, Kapsali - Island of Kithera

The island of Kithera serves as a useful stopping off place between mainland Greece and Crete. We could only stop for a couple of nights because strong winds were being forecast so we made the most of our time by hiring a small car.

2012- Greece, The Peleponnese
Yamaha Blues
Fri 11th May 2012, Porto Kayio

We had to motor the whole passage from Koroni as there was hardly any wind. At least this gave us some time to explore...or so we thought.

Porto Kayio is a nice protected anchorage near the southern most tip of the Peloponnisos. Going ashore therefore involved launching the dinghy and firing up our trusty Yamaha outboard for the first time this year. Unfortunately the Yamaha was out of sorts. It took ages to get started then ran poorly. A solo German sailor on another boat was shouting at me to rev it hard to clear the carburetta but that just disturbed the peace of the anchorage.

2012- Greece, The Peleponnese
Where the wind blows?
Thu 10th May 2012, Koroni

Our first day sailing was just great. We had a nice sailing breeze and we had escaped Kalamata. We could relax and take a break from all the work we had been doing on the boat. The only slight problem was that the wind was blowing in the wrong direction. No problem....we just change our plan and head for Koroni. Our early start the following morning was rewarded with a nice view of the sun rising behind some other boats in the anchorage.

2012- Greece, The Peleponnese
We're Off!!!
Thu 10th May 2012, Kalamata

The last few weeks in Kalamata have flown by! It's been mostly hard work fixing and improving bits of the boat then discovering more bits of the boat that needed fixing! The boat is now ready to go so we're off.

2012- Greece, The Peleponnese
Red, Red Rain
Thu 19th Apr 2012, Kalamata

The launch went somoothly, but we are still in Kalamata, tied up in the marina. Barrie is busy servicing engines and improving the battery power management system. I'm being a good boatwife, keeping Barrie fed and Yarona clean and tidy. I've also been working with the VAO office staff on a large grant bid for Sierra Leone- it's looking good and we must get lucky at some point!
Today is the first good day for a while. Easter (Greek calendar) was a wash out. The locals like our greeting- "good weather for ducks!". Yesterday was dire, as the downpour appeared to dump half the Sahara on our decks. The puddles in the photo show the weird colour of the rain. An hour with the hosepipe didn't shift it all, so more cleaning is next on the day's agenda.

2012- Greece, The Peleponnese
Where did the sun go?
Mon 9th Apr 2012, Kalamata

We've had some fantastic weather since arriving in Kalamata with temperatures in the mid-twenties. Yesterday, the clouds rolled in and we've been treated to a day and a half of heavy continuous rain. The boat gets lifted back into the water tomorrow at last!

2012- Greece, The Peleponnese
Still sewing!
Thu 5th Apr 2012, Kalamata

The sun awning is finished! I ran out of grommets yesterday so there is one brass one amongst the chrome- apparently all Turkish carpets have a deliberate mistake woven in to them to prove to the gods we know we are not perfect... I'm hoping it will reduce the temperature inside Yarona by several degrees.
I'm about to start on cutting and sewing the back extension to the winter cover. Barrie is still working on the hull. The photo shows the failed through hull- pink is not good!
We've booked a launch for Monday, and it will be good to be back in the water, and not trampling dust and dirt on deck.
I've just looked at Kalamata on Google Earth. The olive trees are all planted in perfect straight lines, and go on for miles. We all know the olives are giant ones, but the trees and leaves are also twice the size of other olive trees.

2012- Greece, The Peleponnese
Life on the Hard
Wed 4th Apr 2012, Kalamata

We've been back in Greece a week now. The weather is lovely- unlike the UK where it's snowing! So much for an early Spring.
Living on the boat when it is on the hard is not much fun, so we've cheated and booked ourselves into a studio flat. There's a lovely view over the bay from the balcony, and it's a 20 minute cycle from the marina so this gives us our daily exercise.
I've spent most of the week in the flat, making the best of the large tiled floor to make a sun awning for the boat. Note the cushion in the photo for sore knees! Barrie is working on the hull, and has broken a weak through-hull fitting- better now than once we are out at sea.

2012- Greece, The Peleponnese
Getting Ready for Greece
Thu 22nd Mar 2012, Bentham, North Yorkshire UK

We will soon be back on the boat. Only a few more days to go. Unfortunately that means a lot of packing and deciding what we need to take. I'm not a great fan of packing as I get a bit stressed and worried. Thankfully Kath keeps a cool head and stays calm.

I also shipped a pallet load of spares to the boat last week. The good news is that they arrived in Athens today. All being well they will be delivered to Kalamata on the 29th March.

We have a long list of jobs planned for the boat so we don't anticipate sailing for at least 2 weeks.

2012- Greece, The Peleponnese
Time for a Break!
Wed 31st Dec 1969, Monfalcone, Italy

By mid July the weather in the med is usually pretty hot so we start to look forward to our planned trip back home for the English summer.

2013 Croatia/Adriatic