A Birthday Party and A Runaway Tender
28 May 2014 | Corfu
Our plans to be near Julian by the 14th May had been happily been realised, so we were all able to be together for Julian's celebratory lunch. The spread that Julian and Claire produced was indeed delicious. Roast lamb and all the trimmings knocked back with their homemade Elderflower wine with figs in Ouzo to finish. Julian warned us beforehand that this dessert was an experiment and while it was scrumptious it seemed to have high alcohol content so the wiser members of the party decided to leave the juice. Actually I think that was only Les and Claire so that left the rest of us all feeling quite tipsy.
Fully satisfied with a lovely meal, great company and lots of fun we decided to go back to Paradise for what we had envisaged as a relaxing afternoon. Well it had seemed a good idea but things as oft happen with boat life, it wasn't. We had just settled down to cups of tea and beers when dark clouds appeared. Keeping a close eye we settled down again but suddenly we felt a powerful bang as our port side stern hit the harbour edge. Our anchor was dragging and a force 7 wind had appeared. This was swiftly followed by the harbour master running to us and shouting for us to leave immediately as it was dangerous to stay. The storm was making the boat rock and sway so every movement was a difficult one. I felt terrible as we had to hurriedly hustle poor Jill, Les, Maximilian and his parents off the boat. I could imagine them thinking, 'Call this Paradise?' On average i ask myself the very same question (Joking Paul). You know the saying; 'it never rains but it pours?' well it soon became clear that our anchor had caught up with the chains on the bottom. This rectified we set off in the direction of Ay Stephonos Bay. We were almost giving a sigh of relief when I glanced back, "Paul, the dinghy! It's come adrift!" Try as we might we could not retrieve our tender in the stormy conditions, sadly we watched helplessly as she drifted off, eventually getting trapped amongst some rocks.
Once safely anchored in Ay Stephonos we called Julian who very bravely came out with a guy in a small speed boat to rescue our tender. This could not be achieved with such awful weather but Paul managed to pull her up the rocks to safety until a full rescue could take place. They were all soaked to the skin and we were very grateful for the help we received that day.
After 3 days the storms and winds had abated and we were able to recover our dinghy. Amazing very little damage was sustained to her by these events and the engine started on the first pull!
Following this incident we did not see Julian, Claire, Maximilian and family on the boat again, I think they decided that dry land was preferable, quite understandable after that experience!