Blue Hour

Who: Jonathon, Nina, Joni, Jonas
Port: Toronto
18 April 2018 | Luka Telašćica, Dugi Otok, Croatia
18 April 2018 | Luka Telašćica, Dugi Otok, Croatia
18 April 2018 | Luka Telaśćica, Dugi Otok, Croatia
18 April 2018 | Kanal Sv. Ante, Croatia
18 April 2018 | Kanal Sv. Ante, Croatia
07 April 2018 | Hvar, Croatia
07 April 2018 | Korčula, Croatia
07 April 2018 | Korčula, Croatia
30 March 2018 | Ston, Croatia
30 March 2018 | Off the coast of Croatia
30 March 2018 | Dubrovnik, Croatia
30 March 2018 | Old town of Dubrovnik, Croatia
17 March 2018 | Paxos, Greece
17 March 2018 | Paxos, Greece
17 March 2018 | Moginisi, Paxos, Greece
14 March 2018 | Methoni, Peloponnesus, Greece
14 March 2018 | Porto Kagio, Peloponnesus, Greece
14 March 2018 | Off the coast of Peloponnesus, Greece
14 March 2018 | Monemvasia, Peloponnesus, Greece
14 March 2018 | Monemvasia, Peloponnesus, Greece

18 April 2018 | Luka Telašćica, Dugi Otok, Croatia
Joni
Obstacle course

18 April 2018 | Luka Telašćica, Dugi Otok, Croatia
Joni
We sailed to was Luka Telašćica, on Dugi Otok, a national park. It is nice, mostly wilderness, but not amazing. Most of the parts of Croatia that we have been to looks the same: nice, with hills and trees, but not amazing. We were surprised to find that we had to pay 380 kuna (kuna are Croatian currency. You divide by four and a half to convert to Canadian dollars) a night. There were many ticks there, too, and we were constantly finding them on ourselves. That night, it rained. Usually when it rains the boat gets clean, but this rain had dust from Africa in it, so that by morning, every exposed surface of the boat was covered in brownish-orange dust. The sand was really caked on and needed a lot of scrubbing.

There was a big salt lake surrounded by hills there, and a great obstacle course. It was about three meters of the ground, and you were supposed to wear a harness, but there were none there, so we went without one.

“The first challenge on the obstacle course was a bunch of logs tied together with a rope hanging in the air and they could wobble and move in and out and in between the logs was about twenty centimetres of space. And there was a rope that you could reach to hold on to for balance.” -Jonas

The second challenge was like a spiderweb, except that it was high up and vertical, and you had to move your way across to the other side. Then there was a zip line that you sat on and zoomed to the fourth challenge, which was ropes folded in half to make a loop where you put your foot. There were about five of them, and you had to walk across them. Then there was a surfboard that you stood on and held onto ropes connecting it to a wire, and zoomed to the next thing, three meters above the ground. Next, there was a challenge similar to the first one except that the logs were lined up end to end instead of side to side. The last task was a zip line that you held onto with your hands. I even convinced Dad to go on and Mom liked it as much as the kids.

Two days later, we went for an hour’s walk to town. In Croatia, you have to have a cruising permit and ours was expiring, so we wanted to renew it. The harbourmaster’s office closed at three pm, and it was coming up to that time, so we were rushing. We made it to town in the nick of time, but the hours were different than what we had been told and it was closed, but was going to open again at five pm. In the meantime, we ate ice cream and Jonas went home with the Water Dogs while Mom, Dad, Sirius and I stayed and waited for the harbourmaster’s office to open. When it finally did, Dad was on a phone meeting so Mom went inside and talked to the harbourmaster, while I stayed with Sirius. The harbourmaster told her that they couldn’t renew the cruising pass until it expired, but other offices had the policy that if you renewed it after it expired, you would be fined. Whether we get fined or not will depend on where we end up. We didn’t want to keep paying 380 kuna a night, so we sailed to Uvala Kosirina, on Otok Murter. Today, it is windy and rainy, so we will probably have a quiet day.

Dust from Africa

18 April 2018 | Luka Telaśćica, Dugi Otok, Croatia
Joni

18 April 2018 | Kanal Sv. Ante, Croatia
Joni

18 April 2018 | Kanal Sv. Ante, Croatia
Joni
Uvala Stonca, Vis, is a wilderness anchorage. We hiked to a town, where we played at a playground and Mom and Val went for a walk. It was quite hot, so Dad and I went and got ice cream. We sailed to Uvala Mala Luka, on Otok Drvenik, but I was sick the first day we were there and didn’t go to shore. Dad and Gavin went for a walk with Sirius and saw a huge hare. Sirius is a Greek harehound, so Dad and Gavin tried to get Sirius to chase it. He did, but the hare was too fast. There were lots and lots of ticks there. They are big and black, and they like to burrow into people’s skin. You have to find them before they do it, other wise you might get a disease from them. Whenever we came home from a hike, we found at least three on us and usually ten on Sirius. We stayed there a few more days, before sailing to Kanal Sv. Ante.

There was a big fort from the fifteen hundreds that we wanted to go explore. It was on a peninsula connected to the mainland by a narrow strip of rocks that were somewhat underwater. We managed to cross over to the fort without any wet feet, but it was closed. On the way back, my feet got drenched. The next day, we decided that we would take the dinghy to the other side of the fort where the door was. It was open, so Jonas, Gabe, Lauren, Amelia, Mom, Val, Sirius, and I walked up a rickety wooden ramp to the door. It was made of stone and was very dark inside. We walked up to the roof, where there was a good view of Kanal Sv. Ante. Inside the fort, there was a stone passage that we walked down. It was dark and wet with lots of pigeons. It looked like the dungeons. We didn’t go very far down, because it was wet and creepy, so we went back to the boats.

Next, we sailed to Uvala Potkučina, on Otok Kakan. We took the dinghy to shore and Mom, Sirius, and I went for a walk because we wanted Sirius to get his energy out. The walk only lasted for three minutes, and it was the only trail, so we took the dinghy to a small island in the bay. It looked like there weren’t many trees and it was mostly rock, so we were going to scramble round. Unfortunately, what we thought was just low grass was actually prickle bushes. We found the least prickly route to the top of the island, then decided to turn around. We couldn’t find the route we took up, so we had to go the prickly way. Mom fell down twice into the prickles and I fell down once. There was a hole that Mom fell into, and I didn’t want to fall into it as well. I couldn’t tell where it started, though, because of the prickles. Sirius came and showed me where the edge of the hole was, so I jumped across. I fell over into the prickles on top of Sirius, and Mom had to pull me up. Another time, there were knee-deep plants that completely covered Sirius, who barely got out.

This is us trying to not get wet while going to the fort.

07 April 2018 | Hvar, Croatia
Joni

07 April 2018 | Korčula, Croatia
Joni
Easter breakfast

Meeting up with the Water Dogs

07 April 2018 | Korčula, Croatia
Joni
We spent a few days on Korčula, and had Easter there. Easter was very fun. Eggs were hidden all over Blue Hour and Jonas and I looked for them. Then we headed to Manastir on the island of Sčedro. When we were sailing in Newfoundland and Greenland a few summers ago, we sailed with another boat named Water Dog that had three kids. We saw them last in the summer of 2016 in Iceland, because they were going to keep cruising year-round and we had to go home for the winter. Water Dog is hauled out in Estonia, but they are chartering a boat in Croatia called Ana. We met up with Gavin, Val, Gabe, Lauren, and Amelia at Manastir, on the island of Sčedro and are going to sail with them until they go back to Estonia. In the summer, they are going to sail Scotland with us on Water Dog. We all went for a hike across the island and Sirius played with another dog named Lero whom he really liked. The Water Dogs came over for Easter dessert that I had made. The next day was very hot, so we sat in the cockpit on Ana (because Blue Hour's cockpit is like a greenhouse in the sun and it was 39 degrees Celsius in there). I read and Jonas and Lauren went swimming. Then we went for another hike and Jonas, Lauren, Gabe, and Amelia made an aquarium on the beach with creatures they had found nearby.

"We found this weird sea urchin that had shorter spikes than the regular ones and it was purple, but the end of the spikes were white. We have seen sea cucumbers in the past few anchorages and we got a sea cucumber and we got this weird sea centipede thing that was glowing bright red around its edges and it was so cool but a bit creepy. And we got some regular sea urchins and lots of hermit crabs. One hermit crab was in a land snail shell." -Jonas

We went for another hike with Lero the dog and Sirius the next day. That morning, we got an email from some people in Norway saying that they had gotten the message in a bottle that we had cast overboard on the passage from the Faroe Islands to Scotland in July. The pictures they sent from Norway made us decide to go there in the summer of 2019. We sailed to Uvala Duboka Vela on the island of Sv. Klement and anchored in the wilderness, which was a nice change from all the towns we had been going to. We went for yet another hike and Jonas, Gabe, Lauren, Amelia, and I played a game.

Hvar was a very nice town, with old stone buildings and a large old castle at the top that we hiked up to. Now we are at Uvala Stonca, on the island of Vis.

Easter egg hunt

30 March 2018 | Ston, Croatia
Joni
On the wall

30 March 2018 | Off the coast of Croatia
Joni
Jonas and Nico at the bow

30 March 2018 | Dubrovnik, Croatia
Joni
Sirius’s spot for two days

Croatia

30 March 2018 | Old town of Dubrovnik, Croatia
Joni
The passage to Croatia was fairly easy. We did a long day to Otranto, Italy, then did an over-nighter to Dubrovnik, Croatia. We checked in then went to a big marina. We took a taxi to the old town of Dubrovnik, which was very cool. It is a walled city with old fashioned stone houses and we enjoyed walking along the wall and through narrow alleyways. For the next two days, the Bora blew. The Bora is a strong wind that blows once or twice a year and we hid in the boat for those two days. It was also very cold (the coldest we had had since Iceland), and pouring rain. I don’t think Sirius likes Croatia very much, because he stayed curled up by the heater for most of those two days.

When the Bora was over, we sailed to the small town of Cavtat, where we picked up my friend Jada, her mom, and her brother Nico, who were visiting. We sailed to Polace, on the island of Mljet. It is a park and mostly wilderness with a few houses. In Greek mythology, it was called Ogygia, which was where Calypso was imprisoned by the gods and where Odysseus stayed for a while on his journey back to Ithaca. We went for a nice long hike through the woods. It reminded us of Northern Ontario. The next day, we went for another hike, this time along the saltwater lakes. They were a pretty sparkling blue colour framed by woods. We ate lunch on a bench by the lake then walked along a bridge. Jonas and Nico found a bunch of snails and fed them on board. It was all they talked about the whole time (and it got annoying after a while).

The next day, Jada and I kayaked and Jonas and Nico sailed Pierre the Optimist sailing dinghy until it was time to head to Ston. There was a huge wall for medieval fortification that we walked on to another village, and it is the second longest wall in the world after the Great Wall of China. Jada and her family left the next day. We had a great time with them and I hope they will visit us in Scotland! Now, we are on the island of Korčula.

17 March 2018 | Paxos, Greece
Joni

17 March 2018 | Paxos, Greece
Joni

Last Places in Greece

17 March 2018 | Moginisi, Paxos, Greece
Joni
We were all glad to leave Lefkes, since it was so busy, and sail to Paxos. On the way, we went through the Lefkes Canal and through a bridge.

“It was a floating bridge. It was sort of a swing bridge, but it floated and on one side, it had a bow thruster to move one side of the floating bridge to the side of the canal, and on the other side, there was a post going to the bottom of the canal and attaching to the back corner of the floating bridge, so then it just swing from being a bridge to going alongside one side of the canal”
-Jonas

Paxos was very nice. The water was sixteen degrees Celsius, so Dad, Jonas, and I went swimming in our wetsuits and Dad cleaned the hull. We went on a hike to a natural arch in the rock facing the sea. It was big and wide, and Mom, Jonas, Sirius, and I walked along it and stood on top (Dad was too scared). We had to leave the next day, but we needed to get some groceries first, so we hiked to town and took a taxi back.

Our next port was Corfu. In Greek, it is called Kerkyra, and it was Circe’s island, a sorceress who turned men into pigs when they came to her island in Greek mythology. It is our last place in Greece, because we are waiting for a weather window to head across to Croatia, although we may have to go via Italy if the weather isn’t good. Greece is my favourite place we have visited so far this trip (aside from Scotland). The towns have been really nice and I loved seeing the Ancient Greek ruins and going to places that were significant in Greek mythology. When we go to Croatia, it will be strange not to see stray cats everywhere you look. Here is a post by a guest writer:

Hi. My name is Sirius, and I am one of the crew on Blue Hour. I think that everything is shrinking, because I don’t fit in Uncle Joe’s lap anymore and he can’t lift me. Also, we had to buy me a new den because the old one shrank so much I could barely fit through the door. My favourite place was Hydra, because of all the nice, juicy donkey poo there. My family was being really annoying and not letting me eat it. I don’t know why. They don’t let me do a bunch of fun things, like eating rotting fish, roadkill, or dirty tissues and they don’t let me say hi to the cats. I don’t think the cats here like me, though, because when I get too close, they scratch me. I keep trying to make friends with them, though, but it’s hard because my family won’t let me get close to them because they say that the cats are unfriendly. Maybe the next cat will like me. The scenery keeps changing around here. One day I might fall asleep in a nice calm place after and wake up in a busy place full of people! It is very interesting. I wonder where I will end up next?
Have a nice day!
From Sirius (Black, Brown, and White)

14 March 2018 | Methoni, Peloponnesus, Greece
Joni
Part of Methoni Castle

14 March 2018 | Porto Kagio, Peloponnesus, Greece
Joni
Freshly caught bluefin tuna

14 March 2018 | Off the coast of Peloponnesus, Greece
Joni

14 March 2018 | Monemvasia, Peloponnesus, Greece
Joni
Sirius eating a cannonball

Heading North

14 March 2018 | Monemvasia, Peloponnesus, Greece
Joni
Since spring is coming and it is starting to get more crowded, we decided to head north to Croatia. We were going to go through the Corinth Canal again to the other side of the island of Peloponnesus, but it was closed due to major rockfall, so we had to go around Peloponnesus, which was upwind. We sailed to Hydra first, because we couldn't resist, and had a nice time exploring it for the last time. Then we sailed to Monemvasia, which is amazing. It is an old walled town from five hundred A.D. that has been restored to how it must have looked. It is mostly for tourists and only a few people live there, but it is still really cool. The town is on a cliff overlooking the sea at the end of a peninsula. We hiked to it and walked around the old streets. We had docked in another town right behind it, which had many, many stray dogs. We were followed by three dogs because of Sirius and the chicken we were using to train him. It was hard, because we are not supposed to let Sirius get near stray dogs because of the risk of diseases, but it was impossible not to.

For the next three days, we were just trying to get around Peloponnesus. We caught an eighty centimetre bluefin tuna, which was the best tasting fish we had ever caught. We ate it seared on rice for dinner. We stopped at Porto Kagio, which was nice and with a small cluster of buildings and some mountains, then at Methoni. On the way, we rounded the cape where Odysseus got blown of course when heading home from the Trojan War to Ithaca in Greek mythology. We wanted to explore the castle from seventeen hundred, which is mostly restored and very impressive, but it had already closed for the day. The next morning, we took our dinghy Zoom to town and ate breakfast at a bakery, then explored the castle before sailing to Katakolon. The castle is big and the ceiling is not there, but there were many impressive archways and towers. On the way to Katakolon, we sailed around the cape that was said to be the entrance to the Underworld in Greek mythology. Katakolon is my least favourite place in Greece. It is a tourist town with no green space and the only reason it's there is because the tourists stop there on their way to the Ancient Greek site of Olympia. The harbour was also very dirty and it was the last place on our trip around Peloponnesus. We sailed to Agia Ephemia, on the island of Kefalonia. Kefalonia was the first place we had been to in Greece, but we were in a different town. Kefalonia, along with the nearby islands of Ithaca and Zakinthos, were King Odysseus's kingdom's in Greek mythology. Then we sailed to Meganisi. It was mostly wilderness with a few buildings and we went for a nice walk to a town on the hill. Today, we sailed to Lefkes, a city. It was very overwhelming to be in a big city after being in small towns or wilderness. Tomorrow, we will go through the Lefkes Canal.

04 March 2018 | Livadhi, Serifos, Greece
Joni
Sirius wasn’t feeling well at the end of our hike to the chora.

04 March 2018 | Livadhi, Serifos, Greece
Joni
At the top of the chora

04 March 2018 | Vathi, Sifnos, Greece
Joni

Sifnos and Serifos

04 March 2018 | Vathi, Sifnos, Greece
Joni
After spending many days in Naxos, we were excited to leave and go somewhere new. We sailed to the island of Sifnos, and anchored off a small town that was really more like a cluster of buildings. We arrived late, so we played on the beach and watched the sunset between two mountains. The next day, we climbed up a big hill and left that afternoon, because the weather was not good for staying in that anchorage. We sailed to the island of Serifos, where Perseus and his mother Danae arrived at after being put out to sea by King Acrisius in Greek mythology. We hiked to the Chora, which is the old town on top of a hill. Most Greek islands have them, and they were built during the Turkish times on the highest hill to protect them from Turkish pirates. It was an especially high chora, and there was a very impressive view from the top. When we got back, there was a French boat with three kids docked behind us. Me and Jonas played cards on their boat, and since they don't speak English and Jonas doesn't speak French, I was the translator, which was hard because I only know a little French. It was still fun, though. Today, I want to hike to the highest hill on the island.

27 February 2018 | Naxos, Greece
Joni
Sirius playing with Harper

27 February 2018 | Naxos, Greece
Joni
My doll Ariadne

27 February 2018 | Naxos, Greece
Joni
Giant statue of Dioniysus’s feet

Naxos

27 February 2018 | Naxos, Greece
Joni
We drove along the coast of the island, and up and down mountains with beautiful scenery. We saw a giant statue of Dionysus, Greek god of wine, who was also worshiped on Naxos, who was even bigger than the Kouro, and was also lying on the ground. A few days later, we all walked up to the castle in Naxos. It is in the middle of the town, and the old town is built in and around it. There are many narrow streets and the castle walls and arches were made into parts of the buildings and alleyways. The last night of Oma and Opa's visit, Jonas, Mom, Dad, and I put on a play for Oma and Opa called the Prince Plot. Oma and Opa left yesterday, to see the Acropolis in Athens before flying back to Toronto.

At the beach, Sirius made friends with a puppy who was also an adopted stray Greek dog. Her name was Harper and they played together for a long time. I sewed a doll and named her Ariadne, since Ariadne of Crete was abandoned by Theseus on Naxos in Greek mythology.

Giant statue of Dionysus

27 February 2018 | Naxos, Greece
Joni
Temple of Demeter

27 February 2018 | Naxos, Greece
Joni

27 February 2018 | Naxos, Greece
Joni

Oma and Opa Visiting

27 February 2018 | Naxos, Greece
Joni
We sailed to Naoussa, on the island of Paros, from Naxos to pick up Oma and Opa, who were coming to visit. In Paros, we rented a car and picked them up from the airport. The next day, we drove the car to the town of Lefkes. It was a nice small town and we walked around and showed Oma and Opa the church. We then drove to Parikia to eat lunch, but we couldn’t find anywhere to eat and it was raining, so we drove back to Naoussa. Sirius hates the rain, so he was not very pleased with us for taking him out.

The next day, we sailed back to Naxos with Oma and Opa. We walked to Apollo’s Gate, the half finished temple of Apollo. Most of the ruin had been stolen and only the gate was left because it was too big to move. We rented a car and drove to see a temple of Demeter, Greek goddess of agriculture, who was worshipped on Naxos since it is a farming island and almost all of their food is grown on Naxos. Next, we drove to see a Kouro. A Kouro is a giant statue of a man. Apparently, it had been carved at the top of a mountain, at a Naxian marble mine, and was being transported down the mountain on chips of marble by the ancient Greeks. One of the legs had broken on the way, so they left it lying where it had broken. It is still there, but it is very weathered down. Nearby, there was a little path to a garden, where a lady picked fresh oranges off the trees and gave them to us. They were the best oranges I have ever tasted.

Apollo’s Gate

18 February 2018 | Naxos, Greece
Joni

These are videos that we took. This is the Carnival parade.

18 February 2018 | Naxos, Greece
Joni

Carnival play with Dionysus

18 February 2018 | Naxos, Greece
Joni

Carnival play

18 February 2018 | Naxos, Greece
Joni
Dressing up for the parade

Carnival

18 February 2018 | Naxos, Greece
Joni
For Valentine’s Day, I baked a heart-shaped cake and we walked to the half-finished temple of Apollo. A few days later it was Carnival which is a Christian festive event that happens the week before Lent. On Friday night, there were festivities unique to Naxos. Mom and I went to the square where there was a play going on about Dionysus, his worshipers, and satyrs (half human, half goat). A huge statue of Dionysus was on the stage as well. There wasn’t a lot of talking, so we understood most of it. The worshipers and the satyrs danced and Dionysus gave a speech about Naxos (it was in Greek, so I didn’t really understand it). On Saturday night, there was a parade that the whole town took part in. Everyone (including us) painted their faces black and white and wore a white sheet that was meant to look like a toga. Then we walked in a large group of about two thousand people all carrying torches and chanting “aaa-oh” through the narrow streets of the city. It was late, so Mom took Jonas and Sirius home and only Dad and I were in the parade. This afternoon, there will be a parade to watch.

18 February 2018 | Naoussa, Paros, Greece
Joni
Partly finished Paros Princess

18 February 2018 | Lefkes, Paros, Greece
Joni

Naoussa and Naxos

18 February 2018 | Naoussa, Paros, Greece
Joni
In Naoussa, we rented a car and drove to a hike called the Byzantine Trail. It was nice and the path was well-paved with Parian marble. Almost all of the Greek ruins are made out of Parian marble, which comes from the island of Paros, which was where we were. The mine was quite close, so we drove to see it. It was stressful driving because the Greek streets are very narrow, and we only had a centimetre to spare on both sides. Also, the car was stick-shift, and Dad was not used to driving with a stick-shift, so there was a lot of burnt rubber as we tried not to smash the rental car. At the Parian marble mine, there were a few Ancient Greek ruins and a huge cave in the mountain. We walked in a little ways, but it went on forever, so we turned back before we went very far. The sailing school building near where we were docked was hosting an event where people could come and build their own boats out of olive oil cans. Jonas and Dad went, and they built the Paros Princess.

We sailed to the island of Naxos. It is important in Greek mythology. According to myth, Ariadne was the princess of the island of Crete and daughter of King Minos of Crete. The hero Theseus was sent to battle a monster called the Minotaur in the centre of the Labyrinth, so Ariadne gave him a magical string that would lead him to the centre of the Labyrinth so he could battle the Minotaur. Theseus defeated it, then decided to marry Ariadne. They went on a boat together back to Athens, but Theseus abandoned her in her sleep on the island of Naxos. There Dionysus, god of wine, found her and married her. He made her immortal and she became the goddess of the Labyrinth and paths.

13 February 2018 | Ormos Ayos Ioannou, Paros, Greece
Joni

13 February 2018 | Ormos Ayos Ioannou, Paros, Greece
Joni

The Islands of Siros and Paros

13 February 2018 | Ormos Ayos Ioannou, Paros, Greece
Joni
The next day was Mom’s birthday. We sailed to Finikas, on the island of Siros. It was not very rough, but since we hadn’t been out in anything but flat calm seas for a month, we were seasick. Luckily, Sirius was not seasick at all. We got in at two thirty and Dad made Daddy Sandwiches (sunny side up eggs fried with cheese and put on bread that Dad can make in one minute) for lunch. We played on the beach and Jonas built a mini causeway across a little river of salt water. The only problem was that the waves kept coming over the breakwall and flooding it. Then we went out for dinner for Mom’s birthday. I made a black forest cake roll for dessert.

The next day, we took a taxi to Ermoupolis, the city of the Greek god Hermes, god of trade, travellers, and thieves. It is my favourite city in Greece because everything is clean, there are many steps and small streets, everything is white, and there are some spectacular churches. It is stressful going to a city with Sirius, so we tried to keep to the small streets. We wandered up many steps and then went out for gyros for dinner.

We sailed to an almost wilderness anchorage called Ormos Ayos Ioannou on the island of Paros. We hiked around the island to the lighthouse and then tried to find a place called Rock Park, but we got lost and went back to the beach. The next day, we sailed across the bay to a town. Since it is the off season, everything is closed, so we took a bus to the city to buy groceries. It was stressful because Sirius was not behaving with all the bustle in the city, so we didn’t stay very long.

01 February 2018 | Fikiadha, Kithnos, Greece
Joni
Jonas digging in Zoom’s anchor and Sirius digging it out

01 February 2018 | Fikiadha, Kithnos, Greece
Joni

Fikiadha and Loutra

01 February 2018 | Fikiadha, Kithnos, Greece
Joni
We went for a nice hike to the end of the bay and passed pre-ancient Greek ruins. Then we hiked to the other side of the bay because we heard that there was a hot spring there, but it had dried up. We had a beach fire the next day, something Jonas had been wanting to do for a long time. On the way to the beach, Sirius kept wanting to jump out of the dinghy so we let him so that he realized the concept of water and he started swimming even though we hadn’t taught him. We ate lunch at the beach, but Sirius got to the cheese so we ate lunch when we got back to the boat.

We sailed to Loutra. It is a small town that felt like a ghost town, but it just isn’t tourist season. We walked around the town and saw almost no one. All the buildings are white stone with different colour trim. There is a hot spring beside the harbour that we wanted to go in, but we decided not to because there is garbage everywhere including in and beside the hot spring.

30 January 2018 | Fikiadha, Kithnos, Greece
Joni
This is our house in Toronto and this is how big Sirius will be when we get home.

30 January 2018 | Hydra, Greece
Joni
How Sirius looked after a three hour hike

Hydra and the Cyclades

30 January 2018 | Hydra, Greece
Joni
In Khaidhari, we went for a walk around a salt lake. Sirius is learning to walk nicely, so we didn't have to stop very much. Maria lives less than a ten minute drive from where we were anchored, so she visited us and we went on another walk. A few days later, we sailed back to Hydra for the last time. We went on a nice hike and stopped to eat cookies. Sirius ate a prickle bush. Then he lay down in the prickle bush. Dad and Jonas wanted to turn around. I wanted to keep going, so Mom and I hiked to the tallest peak in Hydra, Mount Eros. It was very scenic up there and we had a 360 degree view of the island. We saw De Luppe, a cruising boat that we had seen in another place in Greece, Leonidion. We went for a walk along the coast with the crew of De Luppe, Moritz and Paula. The walk led to a ship yard, and then we turned around. When we were heading back to Blue Hour, Dad asked me to get Sirius’s leash from Mom who had gone to the store. I ran to the grocery store, but Mom wasn’t there. I ran to the butcher’s, but she wasn’t there either. So I ran back to Dad, who said that she was in the paper store. I ran to the paper store and saw Mom, but she didn’t have the leash. I ran back to Dad, who checked his pockets and found the leash in one of them. Moritz and Paula came over for dinner. Maria had given me a recipe for spanakopita (Greek spinach pie), so I made that from dinner.

The next day, we sailed all day to an island group called the Cyclades. We anchored in an almost wilderness place that reminded us a bit of Scotland and went to the beach. Sirius loved it and played there for hours. I had never seen him so entertained, and we were glad because we live close to a beach in Toronto. I built a replica of our house in Toronto out of sand, and Jonas built a water storage. There were two cute baby goats playing on the beach, and it looked like Sirius wanted to play with them. Luckily, he didn't.

24 January 2018 | Off the coast of Peloponnesus and Khaidhari, Greece
Joni

24 January 2018 | Dhrepano, Peloponnesus, Greece
Joni

24 January 2018 | Hydra, Greece
Joni

Sarconic and Argolic Golfs

24 January 2018 | Hydra, Greece
Joni
In Poros, we met a French family who was travelling Europe in a camper van. They had two kids and a dog, whom Sirius liked. The family recommended a nice hike for us up a hill to a church. When we got back, we invited them over for tea as well as a family on a boat in front of us from Spain, who had a baby. We went to Hydra again, and so did the two families we met. We went for a hike with Celine, Vincent, Louise, Owen, and Jango, the French family. Sirius loved it and followed Jango everywhere. It was rolly in Hydra that night, so we left the next morning and sailed to Porto Kheli. It was a city with lots of cars and not many places to walk, but we went for a bike ride with the French family. Grandma and Grandpa took care of Sirius. It was steep on the way up, so we walked our bikes up, and it was steep with bad roads on the way down, so we walked our bikes down. It was still fun, though. We were glad we hadn't brought Sirius with us.

The next day, we went back to Astros, and then back to Nafplio, where we had gotten Sirius. Maria, the lady who gave us Sirius, came to see him and she said that the runt of the litter had died, two of his brothers (including the one who looked just like Sirius) had been hit by a car, and one had been adopted. She called a few days later to say that the two remaining puppies had disappeared in the night, and had came back the next day, and so there was only Athena and Fivos left. Grandma and Grandpa left the next morning, and we were sad to see them go. We took Sirius to the vet, where he got his first vaccine and a microchip. Maria met us there and came over for lunch.

Today, we sailed to Khaidhari, close to Maria's house. We anchored for the first time in a long time and went for a nice walk.

14 January 2018 | Sunion, Greece
Joni
Temple of Poseidon

14 January 2018 | Poros, Greece
Joni

14 January 2018 | Off the coast of Greece
Joni

Grandma and Grandpa visiting

14 January 2018 | Hydra, Greece
Joni
After Hydra, we sailed to Sunion. It was wilderness except for a hotel and the ruins of the Temple of Poseidon. We arrived in late afternoon and walked up to the Temple of Poseidon. We came back in the dark and it was cool to look up and see the Temple lit up at the top of the hill. When we got back, Grandma and Grandpa called to say that they had changed flights and would be arriving in Athens tomorrow. It was a roly night and the next day we headed to Athens. I was excited that they were coming sooner than we thought.

Grandma and Grandpa arrived in the evening. I went to bed soon afterwards even though it was still early, since I have been staying up so much in the night taking care of Sirius. The next day, we sailed back to Aegina, where we had been once before. We went to the Temple of Apollo that had only one column still standing. In the museum, there was a carving with a Greek hunting dog in it, which meant that the type of dog that Sirius is has been around since Ancient Greek times. We went out for dinner at the same place we had been to last time we were in Aegina. In Greece, dogs are allowed almost anywhere, so we were allowed to bring Sirius into the restaurant. We didn’t want him to be awake because he is not toilet trained yet, so we got him really tired so that he would sleep through dinner. We ate Greek salad, calamari, and various fish. It was a very small restaurant and the kitchen was only separated from the dining area by a counter, so we could watch the chef make our food. There was only one guy cooking and one guy serving the food. It was at the end of a fish market, so they had fresh fish. Last time we were there, we watched the chef make a huge pan of spanakopita. We sailed to Poros and walked around town and up to the bell tower the next day.

08 January 2018 | Lionidion, Peloponnesus, Greece
Joni
Retrieving the cross

Leonidio

08 January 2018 | Lionidion, Peloponnesus, Greece
Joni
After Astros, we sailed to Leonidio. The town of Leonidio was four km inland, but there was a village with only five buildings right next to the harbour. The next morning, it was epiphany, which is a Christian holiday commemorating the baptizing of Jesus Christ. In Greece, the priests throw the cross in the water and people try to get it off the bottom. Whoever retrieves the cross gets good luck for the year and lets people kiss the cross. It was done in the harbour where we were docked and it was cool to watch. Then we rode our bikes to town. Sirius did Wizard-of-Oz style by riding in a basket at the front of Dad's bike. Everything was closed since it was epiphany, so we rode around town and biked back.

We wanted to start heading to Athens, since we were picking up Grandma and Grandpa there, so we went back to Hydra. We were all looking forward to going back.

02 January 2018 | Astrous, Peloponnesus, Greece
Joni

02 January 2018 | Off the coast of Peloponnesus, Greece
Joni

02 January 2018 | Nafplio, Peloponnesus, Greece
Joni

Sirius

02 January 2018 | Deprano, Peloponnesus, Greece
Joni
I would like to introduce a new member of our crew: Sirius the Greek puppy. He is fifty-five to sixty days old. Here is how it happened:

We were going to visit Freddy and Frieda when we saw a poster that said that there were a bunch of puppies that needed a home. One of them looked a bit like Freddy, so Dad called the phone number to see if it was him. The lady who answered didn't speak much English, but we figured out that it wasn't Freddy and that she was going to drive to Nafplio to meet us. We went to see Freddy and Frieda, but Freddy wasn't there (we later learned that he was taken to a home in Athens). The woman (Milena) drove to meet us with her neighbour who spoke English named Maria. Milena and Maria drove us to see the puppies, even though we weren't going to get one. They said that a nice dog had showed up at Milena's door and they had fed her. A few days later, she had seven puppies and they didn't know what to do with them. The puppies were cute. No one knew who the dad was, but we met the mom, who was a stray Greek harehound mix. We decided to get one of the puppies, since they didn't have a very good life there and they were hungry and cold. I have been trying to convince my parents to get a dog for a long time, so I was exited. We were having trouble deciding between two of the puppies, since they both looked the same. They were both black, brown, and white and the only differences were that one had a cute wrinkly snout, a larger white patch on his back, and was wet. We ended up getting the wet one because of his snout and because he was warming up the runt of the litter by lying on top of him, which was why he was wet. We weren't sure what to name him, so we called him the Wet One until we found a name. Maria said that Milena had only put up the poster an hour ago and it was luck that we saw it, since no Greek person would adopt one of the puppies, since there are so many stray dogs and cats in Greece. Maria drove us to the vet, who looked at him and said he was healthy, then to the pet store, where we bought him a crate to sleep in. He was really pathetic at first. He was starving and dehydrated from fighting his siblings for food, and he could barely walk. I only got three hours of sleep that night because he was just learning to sleep in his crate. We wanted to name him a name from Greek mythology. Some of our ideas were Hermes, Poseidon, Triton, Apollo, Artemis (Art), or Zeus, but eventually we decided on Sirius because Sirius is the hound of the constellation Orion and is the brightest star in the universe. The star Sirius followed us all the way to Greece. Sirius the dog has a white patch on his back that could be the star Sirius. Also, Sirius is a character in Harry Potter whom I like, but that's not why we named him that. The next day, he was acting more like a puppy. We took him for a walk in mom's small backpack, but he was afraid of the cars and he was cold. Maria took us to the pet store to buy treats and toys. We are training him to go to the bathroom in the cockpit and not to chew on us.

After a few days, we sailed to Astrous. It is less busy than Nafplio, except that there was a New Year's festival playing loud music. We let Sirius play on a patch of grass. We were going to stay up late on New Years, but we decided not to since I was so tired from staying up with Sirius. I made corn chowder for dinner. In Greece, they bake a New Year's cake and decorate it with the new year written on it. Then they stick a coin in the middle and whoever gets the slice with the coin has good luck for that year. Jonas got the coin. The next day, we walked up to a castle with Sirius in the backpack.

Trying to decide.

28 December 2017 | Mycenae, Peloponnesus, Greece
Joni
The treasury

28 December 2017 | Mycenae, Peloponnesus, Greece
Joni
Scenery surrounding Mycenae

Mycenae

28 December 2017 | Mycenae, Peloponnesus, Greece
Joni
After visiting Freddy and Freida, we walked around town. There are many cool shops in Nafplio, like a shop that sells interesting chocolates such as strawberry pepper, apple cinnamon, and caramelized rice. There is also a pottery shop that sells home-made pottery, and a wood carving shop.

The next day, we took a bus to the ruins of Mycenae. Mycenae was an Ancient Greek city on the island of Peloponnesus from 1600 BCE to 1100 BCE, about a thousand years before the Classical Greek period. It was a very important city because many Greek myths are related to it. Mycenae’s influence spread to other cities such as Corinth, Tiryns, Pyros, Athens, Thebes, and Orochomenos. The Mycenaeans were warriors and always prepared for battle. They were also very good at trading, weapon making, and building. They were known for building citadels on top of hills with huge blocks of stone for the entrances. It was believed that cyclopses built these entrances, since the blocks were too heavy for humans to lift. The city consisted of the King, the ruling class, and the common people. The ruling class was in charge of economy, safety of the city, and training and recruiting new warriors. It was made up of local chiefs. The lower class worked in the royal palace or were self employed.

We explored the ancient city, and we could tell it was older than the other Greek ruins we saw. It was a nice place to put a town because it was nestled between two mountains and had beautiful scenery. We went to the museum, then ran to the treasury, since our bus was going to leave soon. The treasury was circular and pointed at the top. It was very big and mostly intact, but nobody knows what was in there. We ran back to the bus station and waited for our bus, but the bus didn’t come, so we took a taxi instead.

This was the stone believed to have been put there by cyclopses.

26 December 2017 | Nafplio, Peloponnesus, Greece
Joni
Another Fort higher up on the hill.

26 December 2017 | Nafplio, Peloponnesus, Greece
Joni
The golden one is Freida and the black and brown one is Freddy.

26 December 2017 | Nauplii, Peloponnesus, Greece
Joni
At the Fort

Christmas

26 December 2017 | Nafplio, Peloponnesus, Greece
Joni
We sailed to Nafplio, because we wanted to be somewhere secure for Christmas. It was a nice place to be for Christmas, since there were a lot of nice shops and snow covered mountains. We did our Christmas food shopping and Mom and I prepared the food. The next morning, which was the twenty-fourth, we went for a walk and followed a marching band for a little while. We walked up to an old Fort and met two stray dogs: a mom and a pup. They were friendly and the pup was cute, so we stayed and played with them for a while. We named them Freddy and Freida. We went back to Blue Hour and did some last-minute preparations for Christmas. We had a Christmas party in the afternoon. We ate the pfeffernüsse cookies (spice cookies) and melomakarona (Greek Christmas cookies with honey and spices) that I made, and drank mulled wine. Then we opened presents. Jonas's favourite presents were a wind-up lamp, a belt, and a game called Ball Maze. Mine were a book of riddles and puzzles, a Greek shawl, and a book called Zorba the Greek. Oma, Opa, Grandma, and Grandpa got me and Jonas some ebooks, which I am looking forward to reading! We ate a Christmas dinner of roast chicken, mashed potatoes, carrots that Mom made and a French walnut Christmas cake that I made for dessert. We also drank eggnog. Then we did carolling. I played some of the songs on my keyboard. We FaceTimed Oma and Opa, as well as my aunt, uncle, and cousins.

The next day, we brought some leftover chicken to Freddy and Freida and played with them a bit. Then we went for a very nice bike ride along the coast of Peloponnisos. We came back and visited Freddy and Freida again, then went back home. We will visit them again today. We learned that there are many stray dogs in Greece and many of them are friendly. They are considered community dogs and people leave out food and water for them. We talked to a local who comes almost every day to see Freddy and Freida, and we met a photographer who went around Greece photographing and documenting stray dogs.

26 December 2017 | Hydra, Greece
Joni

Hydra and Spetsai

26 December 2017 | Hydra, Greece
Joni
We walked around the town of Hydra. Leonard Cohen had lived there and wrote some of his songs there, so we went and saw the house where he lived. We also saw a picture of him on the Internet standing on a plank of wood right where Blue Hour was docked. Then we realized that he was standing on the same piece of wood that we had been using to get on and off the boat. We were going to leave the next day, even though it was my favourite place in Greece and I wanted to stay, because it was rough in the harbour and was going to get rougher over the next few days. When we came back from a restaurant that we had been eating dinner at, it was tricky to get back onto Blue Hour because we were moving around so much. Mom went first, but she crawled along the plank for the last bit because she couldn't keep her balance. She tied a rope to Blue Hour and gave the other end to me, Jonas, and Dad to hold on to. Dad went next and Jonas and I held the rope for him, even though we wouldn't have been able to hold him if he fell in. Jonas went after him and I was last. It was scary, because everyone else was on board and there was no one to hold the rope for me.

We sailed to the island of Spetsai the next day. We wanted to go to Hermioni because Hermione is my favourite character in Harry Potter, but the anchorage wasn't protected and the town was not that nice anyway. It was pouring rain the next day so we decided to stay at home. Then I realized that I needed some ingredients for a recipe I was making. We walked to the store, but it was closed. It was cold and wet, so we decided to go home.

20 December 2017 | Hydra, Greece
Joni

20 December 2017 | Hydra, Greece
Joni

20 December 2017 | Russian Bay, Poros, Greece
Joni

Hydra

20 December 2017 | Russian Bay, Poros, Greece
Joni
We stayed in Russian Bay for two more days. We went on shore and cut some branches from a huge pine tree to make a Christmas tree. After lugging them back to Blue Hour on Zoom, we strapped them to the mast to make a very makeshift Christmas tree and decorated it with my origami and Jonas's model boats that he had made out of paper.

The next day, we sailed to Hydra, named after the monster in Greek mythology called Hydra. It had many heads and whenever someone cut of one of its heads, a two new ones would grow. It lived in the region of Argolid near Peloponnesus, which is where we are now. The town of Hydra is very pretty. The buildings are old and it is in the mountains. It was a bit sketchy getting on and off the boat because we were Med moored very far off from the wall because there were rocks sticking out of it. We had to use a long board like a balance beam to get on and off. We went for a hike up a winding road through Hydra and into the mountains. It was pretty because we got a good view of the town nestled in the mountains. In Hydra, cars and bikes are forbidden. The people who live there either walk or use mules. We saw many people riding mules and walked past many small farms on our hike. Like every other place in Greece, there are cats everywhere. I don't think they have owners, but every few meters there was a cat or two. We had made a menorah that was not very proper but worked and we lit all the candles because it was the last night of Hannukah. This morning, we went to a bakery and ate delicious chocolate croissants for breakfast, something we had not had for a long time.

17 December 2017 | Poros, Greece
Joni
Part of the Sanctuary of Poseidon

17 December 2017 | Poros, Greece
Joni
The main mode of transportation in Greece is motorcycles. We sat on a bench and watched people ride by. The funniest were the old men on tiny scooters and people with kids in from of them.

17 December 2017 | Russian Bay, Poros, Greece
Joni

Poros and Russian Bay

17 December 2017 | Russian Bay, Poros, Greece
Joni
We spent the next day in Russian Bay, which was the cove we were anchored in. We went hiking around the island and saw a lot of goats. Then we took Zoom to the town of Poros which was about a ten minute dinghy ride away to see if it would be good to dock there when the south wind came. We explored the town and walked up to the clock tower, then brought Blue Hour alongside the dock. It was windy the next day, which was why we wanted to be in Poros where it was protected from the south and not Russian Bay. There was a road to the Sanctuary of Poseidon so we decided we should go and see it since Poseidon was the God of the sea and worshiped by navigators. It started raining as we were riding and the road went up a big hill. We were out of breath since the road was steep, so we had to walk our bikes some of the way. By the time we got there, we were exhausted. The Sanctuary of Poseidon was more crumbled than the other ruins we saw, but the scenery was beautiful and lush. The bike ride down was fun; I didn't have to pedal the whole way. My hands were numb from holding the brakes because I didn't want to go too fast because the roads were slippery.

14 December 2017 | Poros, Greece
Joni

14 December 2017 | Aegina, Greece
Joni
In the monastery, the men had to wear pants and the women had to wear skirts. Since Dad and Jonas were wearing shorts, and Mom and I were wearing pants, we had to wear the clothes offered there. They didn't fit Jonas so well.

14 December 2017 | Angina, Greece
Joni
The monastery

Aegina and Poros

14 December 2017 | Aegina, Greece
Joni
After Athens, we sailed to Aegina, a small island. We took a taxi to the ruins of the temple of Aphaea, a Greek Goddess who was worshiped only on the island of Aegina. Then we visited a monastery. We went on a bike ride across the island which was very scenic. We passed Ancient Greek ruins of a temple that had only one column still standing and looked a bit funny. The island is known for pistachios, so we bought some. They were really good and different form the pistachios we found elsewhere. They were flavoured with lemon and salt and roasted. We also bought some covered in honey and sesame seeds. Then we went out for dinner and had really good baklava for dessert. We sailed to Poros and anchored in a cove that is almost wilderness. Jonas sailed Pierre the optimist sailing dinghy and I read in Jorge the Hammock. Dad and Jonas went swimming and I baked a cheesecake.

10 December 2017 | Athens, Greece
Joni
Parthenon

10 December 2017 | Athens, Greece
Joni
Part of the temple of Athena, in the Acropolis.

10 December 2017 | Gulf of Corinth, Greece
Joni
Gulf of Corinth

Corinth and Athens

10 December 2017 | Ancient Corinth, Peloponnesus, Greece
Joni
We sailed to the city of Corinth. It was really sketchy docking because it was rough in the harbour and we had to tie up to a flimsy floating dock that was moving up and down a lot with the waves. We tied to shore just incase the floating dock broke.

Then we took a taxi to Ancient Corinth. Corinth is situated on the Isthmus of Corinth, which joins the island of Peloponnesus to mainland Greece. It was started in 6500 BCE and ended in 900 BCE. Corinth was one of the largest and most important cities in Ancient Greece because it was surrounded by fertile plains and natural springs. It was also the centre of trade because of its location. In Greek Mythology, King Sisyphus was the founder. He was famous for rolling a boulder up a hill forever in Hades. After King Sisyphus, his son Glaucus was the ruler, and then his grandson Bellerophon. Bellerophon was associated with Pegasus, a white winged horse, which is why Pegasus became the city's symbol. The city is also the setting for other Greek myths, including the Golden Fleece.

Ancient Corinth was really cool. It was a town of ruins, and you could compare it to a picture of what is once looked like and locate landmarks on the map that were in the ruins. There was also a museum. We took the bus back to Corinth and went out for Greek food for dinner at a place called Number One All Day Food.

The next day, we went through the Corinth Canal, which is a human-made narrow fissure in the rock that connects the Gulf of Corinth with the Aegean Sea. It was about three miles long and very narrow. Catamarans and large ships wouldn't be able to fit through. It was very scenic, but we couldn't see very much because the sun was shining directly in our eyes.

We arrived in Athens, the capital of Greece. We went for a bike ride (I used rollerblades), but there were no good bike paths, so we had to use the roads and it wasn't very fun. Then we went grocery shopping. First we went to a huge store called Jumbo, but it actually didn't sell food. It sold Christmas things and a bunch of useless things that you couldn't really say what they were. Then we went to a real grocery store. After dinner, we went to an old fashioned powerboat that was a museum, called Neraida. It used to be a ferry, but a man bought it, refitted it, and turned it into a museum about himself.

The next day, we brought our Bromptons (fold-up bicycles) to a bicycle shop, because there had been a recall. Dad bought a third Brompton. We lugged all three Bromptons on the subway with us because we were going to the Acropolis, a famous Greek ruin. We saw the Parthenon, which is a temple, as well as the temple of Athena. It was very impressive. On the way back, we rode our bikes to the subway. When we got off, we were going to take a tram, but we were not sure if it was open. We rode through the city on our bikes, but by that time it was dark, and we got lost. We eventually found our way back and took a tram back to Blue Hour.

04 December 2017 | Delphi, Greece
Joni
The navel of the world

04 December 2017 | Delphi, Greece
Joni
Treasury

04 December 2017 | Delphi, Greece
Joni
Temple of Athena.

Delphi

04 December 2017 | Delphi, Greece
Joni
We stayed in Patras one more day. I baked and Dad went and got a package that had come in the mail. It had the insides of an advent calendar from Oma and Opa. It was a pleasant surprise, because I didn't think I would be getting an advent calendar. The next day, we sailed to Galaxidi. It is a small town and we went for a nice walk through the woods. We played tag and then ate the tuna we caught on the way there for dinner. The day after that, we took two busses to the city of Delphi, where the oracle of Delphi used to be.

Delphi is a place in Greece on Mount Parnassus near the Gulf of Corinth. The Ancient Greeks thought it was the centre of the earth. In Greek mythology, Zeus was looking for the centre of the earth. He sent two eagles in opposite directions from Mount Olympus. They met at Delphi, which is why it was considered the centre of the earth. Zeus then threw a rock down to Delphi to mark the centre, and it was called the navel of the earth. A temple was built for Apollo in Delphi because he killed the serpent Python that guarded Delphi, which was put there by Gaia, Mother Earth, to guard the centre of the earth. The oracle, a person in Ancient Greece who makes prophecies, lived there. She was a High Priestess named Pythia in the temple of Apollo.

We went to a museum there that had a lot of ancient sculptures and then walked among the ruins. It was a really nice hike as well, and there was beautiful scenery. We saw the navel of the earth and the temple of Apollo where the oracle lived, the treasury, the stadium, and the amphitheatre. They were crumbled, but you could still see what it must have been like. Then we walked down the hill to the temple of Athena. We went back to town and had a snack, then took two busses back home.

Temple of Apollo, where the oracle lived.

01 December 2017 | Kalavryta, Peloponnisos, Greece
Joni
In the town on top of the mountain.

01 December 2017 | On the way to Kalavryta, Peloponnisos, Greece
Joni
On the train.

01 December 2017 | On the way to Kalavryta, Peloponnisos, Greece
Joni
On the train.

Kioni and Patras

01 December 2017 | Patras, Peloponnisos, Greece
Joni
In Kioni, we walked around town, but we hardly saw anyone because it wasn’t tourist season. There were orange and lemon trees everywhere, but we didn’t pick any because they looked like they belonged to people. The next day, we tried to hike to the point, but the path didn’t go all the way there, so we only hiked some of the way. There were deer droppings everywhere and some goats ran across the path in front of us. We sat in a bar to wait for the grocery store to open and drank freshly squeezed orange juice from oranges that had been picked that day in Kioni. The grocery store was tiny, but I found pitted tart cherries for a recipe there, something I had been looking for since Iceland.

The next day, we sailed to Patras, the third largest city in Greece. The day after that was my twelfth birthday. One of the presents I got was a waffle-maker from Oma and Opa. We ate waffles for breakfast and I was really excited because they are one of my favourite foods and we didn’t bring our waffle-maker from our house in Toronto. We we walked around town and then ate risotto primavera for lunch. We walked downtown, to a place sort of like the Distillery District in Toronto. We went shopping and bought new slippers and a blanket with sleeves for me. Then we went out for a Greek dinner.

The next day, it was a holiday called St. Andrew’s day and most things were closed. We took two long bus rides to a train station, where we took a train up a mountain. In the steep parts, it was a rack railway, which is a cog on the bottom of the train that attaches to the rack in between the tracks and pulls the train up the hill. The scenery was really cool. Sometimes the train squeezed through narrow stone tunnels and it looked like it wouldn’t fit, and sometimes it went on a narrow strip of land above abysses and it looked like the train was going to fall off. It was like going fast foreward into fall, because at the bottom it was warm and the trees had all their leaves, on the way up the trees were in various stages of dropping their leaves, and at the top it was cold and they expected snow next week. There was a town at the top, and we stayed there for three hours before taking the train back down.

Me with my new waffle-maker.

27 November 2017 | Fiskardho, Kefalonia, Greece
Joni
Sixth century basilica

27 November 2017 | Fiskardho, Kefalonia, Greece
Joni
Old battery

27 November 2017 | Fiskardho, Kefalonia, Greece
Joni

Fiskardho

27 November 2017 | Fiskardho, Kefalonia, Greece
Joni
In Fiskardho, a town on the island of Kefalonia, we went for a really short hike to a lighthouse and a sixth century basilica. Most of the walls had crumbled, but there were a few still standing. There were cats everywhere, on the dock, and in stores and restaurants. We had a snack at Irida's, a cafe across from Blue Hour. We ate Greek meatballs and fed the fish some bread, since we were at the edge of a stone walkway on the water. Irida's granddaughters, Angelica and Athena, served us the food, and then they tried to catch some fish with a net with Jonas. They caught two octopi, but they didn't keep them. The next day was a make-and-mend day, so I baked and Dad and Jonas repaired the cockpit enclosure and one of our sails, while Mom cleaned. Then Jonas and I made Triple Cheese Macaroni, one of my specialties, for dinner and we went to Irida's for some baklava. Her two cats were roaming around her cafe and sat on me and Dad's laps. The day after that, we said goodbye to Irida and sailed to Kioni on the island Ithaca.

Greece at Last!

24 November 2017 | Taormina, Sicily, Italy
Joni
In Taormina, we hiked to a town on top of a big hill. There was an old Roman amphitheatre there and people still did concerts and plays on the stage. We went out for our last Italian dinner, because we were leaving for Greece to next day. One of the dishes we ate was spaghetti with squid ink. It tasted like spaghetti, except that it was black. We left early in the morning so that we would arrive before sunset the next day. It was really calm and there was no wind, so we motored most of the way. We arrived at sunset the next day, and went to bed. After breakfast, we realized that the mooring we had used to keep our stern off the dock (because we had Med moored) was only held to the bottom by a small anchor that dragged when Dad pulled on it. Luckily, we had set up a stern anchor before we left for Greece, so we used that as a mooring instead. We will explore the town after school. I am really excited to be in Greece!

Roman amphitheatre.

21 November 2017 | Panarea, Sicily, Italy
Joni

21 November 2017 | Panarea, Sicily, Italy
Joni
Prehistoric village.

21 November 2017 | Lipari, Sicily, Italy
Joni

21 November 2017 | Lipari, Sicily, Italy
Joni

Hiking and a Volcano

21 November 2017 | Lipari, Sicily, Italy
Joni
The Aeolian Islands were really nice. We sailed to Lipari. We walked around town and went to an archeology museum. We saw ancient pottery and Greek and Roman sculptures. Then we sailed to an active volcano named Stromboli. There were no good anchorages, so we sailed past the island and then to Panarea. It was dark, and you could see lava coming out of the top of Stromboli. It would shoot into the air and sometimes trickle down the sides of the mountain.

There was a small town in Panarea, and a big cliff. We went hiking to a prehistoric village. There were many circular huts, but only the base of the walls remained. Then we hiked up the cliff. It was fun and scenic, and in some parts, there were old stone paths. We reached the top and started doing a loop back, but there were 2 paths that we could take. One of the signs was missing, so that only the post was still there. We took the path with the sign because we thought the other path might be a dead end since the sign was not there. We wanted to be back before dark, so we were hurrying, but the path was curving away from the village. We kept walking and eventually, the path joined up with another path and took us back to the town just as the sun set. We decided that the sign marking the other path must have just been blown off with the wind, and that was the real way back, becuase the path that we took was very long and took us in the wrong direction before meeting up with the real path back to town. The day after that, we sailed through the Straits of Messina (a narrow body of water that separated Sicily from Italy) and to Taormina.

17 November 2017 | Vulcano, Aeolian Islands, Italy
Jonj
Stinky sulfer smoke.

17 November 2017 | Vulcano, Aeolian Islands, Joni
Joni
The crater at the top of the volcano.

17 November 2017 | Off the coast of Sicily, Italy
Joni
Old man in the rock.

Sketchy Marinas and the Aeolian Islands

17 November 2017 | Vulcano, Aeolian Islands, Italy
Joni
We went to three empty marinas in a row. The first one was called Arenella and we left the next morning. Then we sailed to Cefalu. It was sketchy because it was a fishing harbour and only had concrete walls instead of pontoons. The walls were rough and had many things sticking out of it, so we had our fenders out (rubber balls that you tie to the side of you boat when you are at a dock so that the dock doesn’t scratch your hull) at different heights to prevent all the stuff sticking out of the wall from scratching Blue Hour. It was rough at the dock and we had our docking lines everywhere to hold us suspended so that we wouldn’t crash into the hard-looking wall or the fishing boat next to us. Then we went to Sant’ Agata Militello. It was also sketchy because the guy that helped us dock didn’t know what he was doing. It was rolly there, too, and the marina people were grumpy. We were going to go shopping, but then Dad decided to go refill on diesel. We waited for a long time for the taxi that the marina guy had called and Mom, Jonas, and I went grocery shopping. The grumpy marina guy actually turned out to be nice, and he drove Dad to the gas station in his car. It was really tricky to get back on board because we were Mediterranean moored (what they do in the Mediterranean instead of docking. The boats all dock on one long pontoon with their bows to the dock and their sterns attached to a mooring. The boats dock against each other instead of on pontoons).

The day after that, we sailed to Aeolian Islands, which are a small Italian island group off of Sicily. It was a relief to get out of the sketchy marina area. We anchored on the island Vulcano. There was a really small town there, and a volcano. The hike was really fun. The path had been washed away in the beginning parts so we had to scramble across crevasses and we took a shortcut and scrambled up a steep sand hill. Then we hiked along a ridge cut in the mountain and at the top, there was a big crater. We had to walk through sulfer smoke for part of it, and it really stank. We met a nice Irish lady named Gana who said we could come visit her in Ireland when we went back there next summer.

The volcano on Vulcano

12 November 2017 | Castelammare, Sicily, Italy
Joni

Sicily

12 November 2017 | Trapani, Sicily, Italy
Joni
We went on a 1 1/2 day passage to Sicily, another Italian island, on November 8th and arrived on the 9th. It was pretty easy and nobody was really seasick. We arrived at a place called Trapani. We walked in town and then went on a really long cable car ride to the top of a mountain. There was a medieval village on top and people still lived there. There were also a lot of old castles, including the Castle of Venus. The village was all made of stone and there were a lot of winding streets that you could easily get lost in. The castles were not entirely in ruins, and the buildings and carvings were still there. Then we took the cable car back down and went to a famous pizza place. The next day, Mom went to the bakery and bought croissants for breakfast. Then we walked around town again. The day after that, we sailed to Castelammare. We walked around and played tag in a square and the ate fresh, steamed artichokes and Sicilian shrimp on pasta for dinner that we bought at the market in Trapani.

12 November 2017 | Cala Piscinni, Sardinia, Italy
Jonj

Exploring Sardinia

12 November 2017 | Cala Piscinni, Sardinia, Italy
Joni
Sardinia was very nice because it was not as built up as the Balearics. At the restaurant in Portoscuso, we ate spaghetti vongole (spaghetti with clams), ravioli, and calamari for dinner. For dessert, we ate a Sardinian dessert called pardula (a little cake inside crunchy pastry) and deep fried ravioli with ricotta cheese inside.

The next day, we sailed to Cala Piscinni, a wilderness anchorage. We went swimming, and the next day went for a hike. On the way, a preying mantis jumped on Jonas's leg and he started doing a weird dance because he didn't know it wasn't poisonous. Dad came running back because he was scared too, and didn't know it wasn't poisonous either. The preying mantis got scared and ran into a bush.

We left and traveled a short way to a marina, because the anchorage was going to be rolly with that wind direction. Then we sailed to Cagliari, the capital of Sardinia. We went out for pizza for dinner. We went for a bike ride the next day, and just as we were leaving, it started to hail. Luckily, it only lasted a few minutes and the rest of the time was sunny. We biked to some salt pans and saw flamingoes. The next morning, we bought some new sunglasses for me and went to the market and ate lunch there. There were about 20 different fruit stalls and many meat stalls selling interesting parts of animals that we don't usually eat. We bought some really good, crumbly, old Parmesan from a cheese stall.

02 November 2017 | Portoscuso, Sardinia, Italy
Joni
Device for winding up fish nets in the 16th century shipyard.

02 November 2017 | Portoscuso, Sardinia, Italy
Joni
16th century shipyard.

Sardinia

02 November 2017 | Portoscuso, Sardinia, Italy
Joni
We did a one night passage to Sardinia, a big Italian island west of mainland Italy. It was rough for the first few hours, but then it was fine. We arrived in a place called Portoscuso just before lunch on the second day and Dad and Mom took a nap. We calculated that it had been exactly 64 hours since we had been in a place this calm, since Cala Gran was rough after we came home from grocery shopping, Cala de Binibeca was rough and we didn’t go to shore, and we had been at sea the rest of the time. We walked to a shipyard from the 16th century and along the water. Then we ate tuna shish kebabs from two small tunas we caught off the coast of Sardinia for dinner. Today, we walked around town, but everything was closed. We will go to an Italian restaurant for dinner tonight and I am really excited!

02 November 2017 | Cala de Binibeca, Balearic Islands, Spain
Joni

02 November 2017 | Cabrera, Balearic Islands, Spain
Joni
Near the lighthouse.

Early Halloween

02 November 2017 | Cabrera, Balearic Islands, Spain
Joni
It was a very windy day and we hiked up to a lighthouse. We sailed to Cala Gran on the island Mallorca the next day to go shopping, because we were low on food, and the day after that sailed to Cala de Binibecab on the island Menorca. We had an early Halloween there (October 30) because on the real Halloween, we would be at sea heading to Italy. For Halloween, Jonas and I walked around the deck and trick-or-treated on our door. Mom and Dad dressed up as different people each time we knocked and gave us candy. Jonas dressed up as a Newfoundland fisherman and I dressed up as a fortune teller from a book called Harry Potter, named Professor Trelawney.

27 October 2017 | Cabrera, Balearic Islands, Spain
Joni

27 October 2017 | Cabrera, Balearic Islands, Spain
Joni
Really long, narrow, dark, spiral staircase

27 October 2017 | Cabrera, Balearic Islands, Spain
Joni
Old castle

Balearic Islands

27 October 2017 | Es Palmador, Balearic Islands, Spain
Joni
We left Badella, the first place we were in in the Balearic Islands, because the mooring weren't so sturdy and we were afraid of crashing into the rocks. We sailed to Porroig and went snorkelling, but there was loud music playing from a nearby house until 5:00 a.m., and we figured out why the island we were on was nicknamed "Party Island." We finally found a quiet spot, called Es Palmador, which was not on "Party Island" anymore. The water was really warm and we snorkelled to the beach. Jonas and I got stung by jellyfish. We hung around on the beach and in the water for almost 2 days, before sailing to Cala Llonga. It was a town, so we went out for dinner at a place called Can Nuts. Then we went to Cabrera, a national park and also a military base. There is an old castle here, and we hiked up to it. You can walk in the castle and up a really long, narrow, curvy, and dark staircase to the top, where you can see, Mallorca, another island in the Balearics. Today, we had a low-key day and relaxed on Blue Hour.

21 October 2017 | Approaching Ibiza, Balearic Islands, Spain
Joni
The Balearic Islands

21 October 2017 | Cartagena, Spain
Joni
Roman amphitheatre.

Heading to the Balearic Islands

21 October 2017 | Cartagena, Spain
Joni
We sailed to Cartagena, and for once arrived in the afternoon instead of at night. There was an old Roman amphitheatre there, so we went to see it. It was very cool. There were the remains of old columns and the seating area was more or less intact, but the stage had been redone. People had been building houses on top of it and only 20 years ago did people realize that there was something there and dig down to uncover the amphitheatre. Then we went to an underwater archaeology museum. We learned that underwater archeologists retrieve artifacts from shipwrecks. We even saw an elephant tusk that had been found underwater. There were old coins that divers found on the bottom of the ocean and you could see how things properly treated looked good, but if they weren’t properly treated, they cracked or rusted. Then we went out for dinner and ate artichokes, croquettas (mashed potato fritters), cod, and beef. The next day, we sailed to Altea and today, we sailed to the Balearic Islands, a Spanish archipelago off the coast of Spain. On the way, we caught a tuna and ate it for dinner.

The Roman amphitheatre.

18 October 2017 | Off Costa Blanca, Spain
Joni
Doing school under weigh (while sailing).

18 October 2017 | Off Costa de Sol, Spain
Joni
All along Costa de Sol, there are white tarps covering the ground. They are greenhouses to keep in moisture, but they look like glaciers.

Spain Again

18 October 2017 | Off Costa Blanca, Spain
Joni
We sailed back to Gibraltar, then left the next morning to sail to a place in Spain called Fuengirola. We arrived in the evening and went out for gelato. The next day, Mom and I went shopping for glasses for my Halloween costume. We sailed to Caleta de Valez and the next morning, went to Almerimar. On the way, we caught 2 tuna, which we made into sushi rolls. Today, we actually sailed without using the engine for the first time in a while.

13 October 2017 | Chefchaouen, Morocco
Joni

13 October 2017 | Chefchaouen, Morocco
Joni

13 October 2017 | Chefchaouen, Morocco
Joni
The blue town

13 October 2017 | Marina Smir, Morocco
Joni

Morocco

13 October 2017 | Tetouan, Morocco
Joni
We left Gibraltar and sailed to Marina Smir, Morocco. It was a short trip, since Morocco is just across the Straits of Gibraltar. We took a taxi to the nearest big city, Tetouan, where a guide took us aroundo the old town. We were really glad we had a guide because there was a maze of alleyways that we would have gotten really lost in. Our guide, Jalib, showed us the old town where there were tiny market stalls and streets so narrow that only one person could fit through at once. There were also many cats. Then we ate goat shish kebabs, calamari, and couscous with chicken. Jalib took us to a carpet store where we bought a handmade silk Moroccan carpet. The next day, we took a taxi to a town called Chefchaouen. Jalib showed us around there, too. We walked through more narrow streets and then ate a Moroccan lunch. It was very cool because almost all of the town was painted blue. Most of the houses were blue, the streets were blue, and even some of the trees were blue.

A very narrow street.

11 October 2017 | Gibraltar, England
Joni

11 October 2017 | Gibraltar, England
Joni
St. Michael’s Cave

11 October 2017 | Gibraltar, England
Joni

Gibraltar

11 October 2017 | Gibraltar, England
Joni
We went out for a breakfast of toast, eggs, bacon, sausages, french fries, and beans. Then we took a cable car up to the top of the Rock of Gibraltar. There were monkeys (a type called Barbary Macaque) everywhere. They stole a woman’s bag of popcorn. Then we went to St. Michael’s cave, which is a huge cave full of weirdly shaped stalactites and stalagmites. It had been converted into an auditorium, so there were rows of chairs between the stalagmites and a stage at the back. Then we walked back down, across a suspension bridge. Today, we were hoping to make a pumpkin pie for a belated Thanksgiving dessert, but we couldn’t find pumpkin purée, so I made apple pie instead.

09 October 2017 | Ria Formosa, Portugal
Joni
Beach fire-grilled fish

09 October 2017 | Ria Formosa, Portugal
Joni
I sewed matching aprons for me and Jonas for his birthday

09 October 2017 | Ria Formosa, Portugal
Joni
The moon

In the Mediterranean!

09 October 2017 | Ria Formosa, Portugal
Joni
We spent a bunch more days in Ria Formosa. It was Oma's birthday on October 5, and so we went swimming off the beach and ate quail that we had bought at the market for dinner. On October 7 it was Jonas's birthday, so we had a beach fire and roasted clams and sea bream. We went out for dinner and ate really good calamari. Oma and Opa left early the next morning and we sailed to Sancti Petrie, in Spain. It was upwind, so we bashed our way there and were seasick. Today, we sailed to Gibraltar, a city in Spain belonging to England, which is the entrance to the Mediterranean Sea and where we are planning to spend the winter! On the way, we caught a mackerel and a tuna and are going to eat them for dinner.

03 October 2017 | Olhao, Portugal
Joni

03 October 2017 | Olhao, Portugal
Joni

03 October 2017 | Olhao, Portugal
Joni

Rounding the Corner of Europe

03 October 2017 | Off the Portuguese coast
Joni
After Cascais, we sailed to Sines and said goodbye to Nereida because they were going to Madeira. We went out for dinner and happened to sit next to a couple from Toronto, Canada. The next day, we rounded Cabo Sao Vicente to the south coast of Portugal. Since it was the southwest corner of Europe, we threw messages in bottles overboard. We stopped at Sagres and went swimming and body surfing off a beach, since the water was suddenly warm. Then we went into the Faro Lagoon. On the way, we trolled a fishing line off Blue Hour's stern, and caught a Mahi Mahi. We took Zoom to the town across the lagoon called Olhao. The market was just closing, so we walked around a bit then took Zoom to Culatra, the island on the other side of the lagoon and went to the beach. The next day, Mom and I took a train into a city called Faro to meet Oma and Opa, who were getting off another train from Lisbon. We all took a train back to Olhao, then went for ice cream. A few hours later, we went out for dinner. The day after that, we went to the market and bought some Portuguese hats. When we got back to the boat, I read in the hammock and Jonas went fishing. He caught a cuttlefish and 3 sea bream, which we ate for dinner.

27 September 2017 | Cascais, Portugal
Joni

27 September 2017 | Cascais, Portugal
Joni
At the beach, Bo and I dug a boat out of the sand.

27 September 2017 | Porto, Portugal
Joni
We bought some chestnuts that a man was roasting on the street.

Portugal

27 September 2017 | Porto, Portugal
Joni
The sail to Porto, in Portugal, was very foggy. We sailed most of the day and Kim, Jonas, and I made a LEGO movie. There was a giant chess set at the marina so we played there and happened to see another boat with kids that we met in Ireland, called Nereida. We went out for dinner and the next day, we went for a walk and ate a Portuguese dessert called pastel nata, which is a custard tart. We tasted some port and then Kim left to go back to Canada. We spent a few days in Porto, and then sailed to Figuera da Foz. Then we went to Cascais, which is a town next to Lisbon. There were a lot of dolphins jumping completely out of the water near our bow wave. They were so close that you could almost reach out and touch them.The next night, we went to a light show with Nereida. It was really cool because there was a bunch of stations that you could walk to that we're projecting lights on walls, shining them on fog, and other cool things.
"In the light show, there was these electrict things that you ride. One, which was the trickiest one, had 2 wheels and there was 2 pads attached to it and one, if you push one down, you turn one way. You lean foreword to go foreword and lean back to go back. And one was like that but the foot plates didn't turn so you twist the seat to turn. There was 2 more that I tried. There was a scooter that you push down with your thumb. You can adjust the speed with that, but there is a limit to how far you can push down. There was a back brake that you push down with your foot. That one was like a scooter but electric. And then I tried one more which you sit down. You turn the handlebars to steer. You lean foreword to go foreword and back to go back. There was one more that I didn't try but it looked fun. There was 1 wheel that you sit on."
-Jonas
I made an album in my blog about the light show which will explain it better. Then we took a train into Lisbon and went to Castello de Sao Jorge. Then we went to a really crowded market. In Cascais, we went to the beach with Nereida. The next day we went for a bike ride.

19 September 2017 | Isla de Cies, Spain
Joni

19 September 2017 | Isla de Cies, Spain
Joni

19 September 2017 | Isla de Cies, Spain
Joni
Sand sculptures from left to right:
Turtle, starfish, sea urchin, mermaid

A Guest

19 September 2017 | Vigo, Spain
Joni
We went to Vigo, a city across the bay, to pick up our friend Kim who was going to stay with us for a few days. We picked her up from the train station and on the way back we saw a 100 meter new Indonesian sailing ship. People were allowed to go and explore the ship, so we went on board and found out that it had just finished being built in Spain and was about to do it's maiden voyage. We went to the pool, and when we came back we heard drumming. We looked around and saw that the sailors from the Indonesian boat were doing a parade through the city as a thank you for building their boat. We followed the parade and it was really cool. There were drums, trumpets, bells, a xylophone, people in walrus costumes and people doing tricks. Then we went for dinner. The next day, we sailed to an island called Isla de Cies. We went to the beach and Kim and me started sculpting a mermaid out of sand. Jonas and Mom joined in and we made many sea creatures. The day after that, we went for a hike. Today, we are sailing to Porto.

16 September 2017 | Combarro, Spain
Joni
Church in Combarro.

Boat Sprangen

16 September 2017 | Combarro, Spain
Joni
We sailed to Combarro and Dad rigged up the spare halyard to the bosun's chair so we could swing on it. We pushed off the hull with our feet and swung outward over the water, then pushed off the hull again. We called it Boat Sprangen because when we were in Iceland, we did something similar, but on a cliff face instead off a hull and it was called Sprangen. Then we took Zoom to a nearby city. When we got there, a man met us at the dock and said that we were supposed to have called before we entered he harbour. He eventually let us stay for only 2 hours, so we couldn't eat dinner there. The next day, we sailed to Cangas. We went to shore and ate out for dinner.

14 September 2017 | Muros, Spain
Joni
The one spicy pepper...

14 September 2017 | Isla de Ons, Spain
Joni
At the beach, we used Jonas's kayak for a paddle board.

14 September 2017 | Isla de Ons, Spain
Joni

West Coast of Spain

14 September 2017 | Muros, Spain
Joni
After Camerinas, we sailed to Muros. We went to a pulperia (octopus restaurant) for dinner. The next day, we went to the market and in the afternoon the fish market. We accidentally walked into a fish auction for restaurant and market owners. Then we found the right fish store and bought some fish. We weren't really sure what some of the fish we bought were, since the lady who sold them to us only spoke Spanish. We ate the fish for dinner as well as some peppers we bought at the market. The person who sold them to us had grown them in her garden. They weren't spicy, but she must have accidentally put a spicy pepper from another plant in the bag we bought. Dad ate it and he said it was really, really, really spicy. After Muros, we went to an island called Isla de Ons. We went to a really nice beach and then went hiking. This morning, we left because there was a swell in the anchorage and we were rolling around a lot.

This is the fish auction we accidentally walked into.

09 September 2017 | Camerinas, Spain
Joni
Sea urchins growing on trees!

09 September 2017 | A Coruna, Spain
Joni
Eating gelato

North Coast of Spain

09 September 2017 | Cedeira, Spain
Joni
After Cedeira, we sailed to A Coruna to pick up some packages and fix the winch motor. After Dad had finished delivering the motor to the repair place, we went for a walk and tried to find a place to eat dinner. We couldn't find anything because Spanish people eat dinner at 8:00 pm, so that is when the restaurants open, and it was only 7:00 pm. We eventually ate at a cafe and had lunch food for dinner. We ate really good gelato for dessert. The next day, we sailed to a place called Redes. It is a small town with a really nice beach, so we played there all afternoon. We had planned for Dad to take a bus back to A Coruna to pick up the repaired motor and some packages that had just arrived, but the weather forecast said that today would be the only good day to round a corner. We took Blue Hour to A Coruna then sailed to Camerinas instead. Today, we explored the town of Camerinas. Jonas put the creel down, but when he was pulling it up, the line snapped. Mom retrieved the creel from the bottom with a cod jig, but a chunk from the middle of the line was missing. Dad went snorkelling to see if it was caught on the boat. It was wrapped around the propellor, but we managed to get it off and everything was fine.

05 September 2017 | Cedeira, Spain
Joni
How most people eat at a tapas bar

05 September 2017 | Cedeira, Spain
Joni
Eating at a tapas a bar

05 September 2017 | Cedeira, Spain
Joni
Jonas on an exercising machine.

Passage

05 September 2017 | Atlantic Ocean
Joni
We left Ireland in the morning and had a 3 day passage to the north coast of Spain. It was pretty good, but it got a bit rough from the first afternoon and overnight. We landed in a place called Cedeira. We went to the beach in the morning because it is really hot here, and I wore shorts and a t-shirt all day for the first time since I left Toronto. We went to a tapas bar for dinner. A tapas bar is a a place that serves everyone small plates of food and everybody shares. Most people stand by the counter or outside while they eat, and there was only 2 small tables with three stools each in the restaurant. We ordered shark (which tasted like chicken), fox (which tasted like hot dog, really good calamari, and bonito (a type of fish). The next day, we had a quiet day on the boat. The day after that, we went grocery shopping and got a lot of fruits and vegetables from Spain, including a giant watermelon. Then we went to the beach again.

Lots of South Wind

28 August 2017 | Youghal, Ireland
Joni
We went upwind to Arklow, where we met another boat with kids. We played on the dock with them and left the next day. The water was probably the most dirty water we had ever been in because they dumped sewage in the harbour and there was a bucket of fish heads just below the surface. Then we bashed upwind to the south coast of Ireland, to a place called Kilmore Quay and went for fish and chips. The next day, we got a tour of a survey boat that we were rafted to. They were making new charts by surveying the bottom. The forecast has been
Monday: South wind
Tuesday: South wind
Wednesday: South wind
Thursday: South wind
and we were trying to go south until we rounded the point to the south coast, and now we are going west. Then we went toYoughal (pronounced Yawl). It was late, so we ate dinner and went to bed. Today, we cleaned and made Blue Hour seaworthy, because we might go to Spain tomorrow or the day after. Me and Mom went shopping, and we bought so much food that we could barely carry it back.Our anchor started dragging, so we started moving but our kayak and dinghy were down. Me and Jonas went to pull the kayak in, so we climbed into Zoom and pulled it in. Dad was going full speed ahead, so we couldn't get back on board. Then Blue Hour made a sharp turn and Zoom capsized and me and Jonas were hanging on for dear life until someone came and rescued us.

25 August 2017 | Ardglass, Northern Ireland
Joni
Some harbours are dry at low tide.

25 August 2017 | Ardglass, Northern Ireland
Joni
The tide went down so much, it was like Blue Hour was in a crater.

Isle of Man, Northern Ireland, Republic of Ireland

25 August 2017 | Peel, Isle of Man
Joni
Dad flew to Manchester for a work meeting on Monday morning, and we did school and went to the Harbour Master's office. He was supposed to be back late that night, but his plane got delayed. We were planing to leave the next morning, but his plane got delayed three times, so we couldn't leave because there is a gate in the entrance of the harbour to prevent it drying out, since the tide is so big. The gate only opened at high tide, and since Dad got home in the late afternoon, 18 hours later than we thought, we missed the opening. While we were waiting for him, Jonas played with a boy from another boat docked near us and his friends. They caught crab on the dock. Since it was a really hot and sunny day (which is unusual), we went to the beach with the boys we met. The next day, we invited our friend that we had met yesterday for breakfast and then crashed upwind to Ardglass in Northern Ireland. Since we had missed our weather window the day before, it was a bit rough. Yesterday, we sailed to the Rebublic of Ireland, to a place called Howth. It is like Florida because there are palm trees and a wide road with ocean on one side and cafe's and ice cream stores on the other. We went walking in town after dinner and played at the playground in the dark, which we were really exited about, since it had only just started getting dark at 9:00.

20 August 2017 | Douglas, Isle of Man
Joni
The Thomas the Train books are based on the railway in the Isle of Man that we went on.

20 August 2017 | Peel, Isle of Man
Joni
Dad had a phone meeting with work and me and Jonas had to be quiet, but we both were trying not to laugh.

20 August 2017 | Peel, Isle of Man
Joni
At the House of Manannan, we could dress up like the early settlers on Isle of Man.

Isle of Man

20 August 2017 | Peel, Isle of Man
Joni
We sailed to the Isle of Man (an island in the Irish Sea between England and Ireland that is its own country). There are really big tides there and the harbour that we went to, Peel, has a sill to keep it from drying out. (A sill is a gate that is closed at low tide to keep the harbour full of water while the entrance is dried out and opens at high tide to let boats in.) We walked around town and went to the playground after dinner. The next day, we went to an old castle that was in the harbour entrance. The roof had caved in, but there was a lot of walls still standing. We played tag and capture the flag in one of the rooms, since it was outside. The day after that, we went on a hike on a coastal trail and got a great view of Isle of Man and could even see a bit of Ireland. We played at the beach and went for ice cream at a place that is apparently the best in Isle of Man. We then went to the House off Manannan, a museum about the Isle of Man. We learned that Isle of Man was named after a god called Manannan who protected the island by shrouding it in mist. Today, we caught a bus to the capital, Douglas, and from there took a steam train to Port Erin. We played on the beach, and when we went back to Peel, we went out for dinner and I found Manx (from the Isle of Man) poutine!

Strangford

17 August 2017 | Strangford Lough, Ireland
Joni
We arrived in Strangford in the late afternoon. There was a town on the side of the lough that we were docked at and a bigger town on the other side. We took Zoom to the bigger side and went to the visitors centre and then ate dinner at a place called Captain Jack's. They had really good fish and chips and mashed potatoes. The next day, we went for a bike ride after lunch on the other side of the lough to a giant estate, called Caste Ward. We went to a playground next to the estate then went on a tour of Castle Ward. We rode home quickly because it looked like it was going to rain, and ate a really good steak pie that we bought from the butcher for dinner.

Castle Ward gardens

14 August 2017 | Belfast, Ireland
Joni
Dressing up.
From right to left: Joni, Jonas, Josephina

14 August 2017 | Belfast, Ireland
Joni
The Nomadic

14 August 2017 | Belfast, Ireland
Joni
Titanic sculpture

Titanic Museum

14 August 2017 | Belfast, Ireland
Joni
After breakfast, we went to the Titanic museum. The Titanic was built in Belfast, so there was a lot of information on it there. We could listen to tracks about the the exhibits, but we were in there for many hours and we only got to number 22 of the 24 tracks before we got hungry for lunch and our feet got sore. It was a bit about Belfast in the early 20th century, but most of it was about building the Titanic since it was done right there. You could even see where she was built from the window of the museum. In the end it talked about why she sank, but we rushed through that part because we were really hungry. We went for lunch in a cafe and then went on a tour of Titanic's tender, the Nomadic, which was in dry dock next door. In the Nomadic, there was some old-fashioned clothes that people wore when they went on the Titanic. People could try them on, and so me and Jonas did that. Then Dad and Jonas went to the HMS Caroline, a war ship from World War I, while Mom and I went home. After dinner, we went bowling in a mall that was next to our boat, which had a bowling alley. Dad won, I came 2nd, Mom came 3rd, and Jonas came 4th.

A picture of the grand staircase on the Titanic.

13 August 2017 | Enniskillen, Ireland
Joni
Maguire Castle

13 August 2017 | Belfast, Ireland
Joni
This is the Leaning Clock. It looks really slanted, but you can only see how tilted it is in the picture if you look at the edge of it in relation to the building behind it.

Northern Ireland

13 August 2017 | Belfast, Ireland
Joni
We arrived in Belfast in late afternoon. There was a really long harbour getting in and it had skyscrapers, which we hadn't seen since Toronto. After dinner, we went for a walk. There was a leaning clock tower and we played in a feild before going home. The next day, we took a bus to the Enniskillen castle. It was the Maguire Castle, so we wanted to see it. It was a museum, and after we went to an annual party that was in the field right next to us. We took the bus back and then Dad, Jonas, and I went exploring in the building next door. We saw a Canadian Sports Bar there and we thought it was funny how there are a lot of Irish Pubs in Canada and a Canadian Sports Bar in Ireland.

11 August 2017 | Gigha, Scotland
Joni
Wild Palm trees

11 August 2017 | Gigha, Scotland
Joni
White sand beach!

11 August 2017 | Gigha, Scotland
Joni

Last days in Scotland

11 August 2017 | Gigha, Scotland
Joni
We left Tayvallich and went to the island of Gigha (pronounced Gia). We had heared that there was a nice bicycle ride, so we rode to the beach. I built a sandcastle based on Inveraray castle, but it didn't really look like it. By the time we got back, it was late and we were starving, so we went to a restaurant right next to our dock. There was really fresh seafood there. The next day, we went for another bike ride, this time to Achamor Gardens. It was really cool,because they looked like tropical gardens. There are palm trees in the garden, as well as in the town. The gardens were big, but not huge. It would take about 15 minutes to walk from either end, and it turns out that me, Mom, and Jonas were all pretty bad navigators. There was a map that we each took a photo of on all three \cameras to try and take the route around the pond. We were all in agreement that we were going the right way, just about to come to the bridge, but when we came to a You Are Here sign, it said that we were in the opposite corner of the gardens. After that, we cycled to the harbour and then home.

09 August 2017 | Inverara, Scotland
Joni
The weapons room

Inveraray Castle

09 August 2017 | Inveraray, Scotland
Joni
Lottie had offered to lend us Dougie's car, so we drove to Inveraray to see a castle. The Duke and duchess live in one part, but the other part is a museum. The kitchen was huge and they had a cabinet bigger than my dresser full of drawers of ingredients. We went out for lunch and then drove back. It was very challenging because the cars were stick shift, they drove on the opposite side of the road, and it was a single-lane road. Dad tried to stay on the left side, but once he went to far over and branches came in the window. I really needed to update my blog, so we are at the pub right now because it has internet.

09 August 2017 | Tayvallich, Scotland
Joni
A lot of packages

09 August 2017 | Loch Moidart, Scotland
Joni
Eating mussels

09 August 2017 | Loch Moidart, Scotland
Joni
Castle ruins

09 August 2017 | Isle of Staffa, Scotland
Joni
Cool rock formations

Western Scotland Anchorages

09 August 2017 | Off the coast of Scotland
Joni
After we left Rum, we went to Loch Moidart. There was a really old castle that was built 700 years ago there and we could go inside, although most of the roofs had caved in. We looked for mussels and clams and ate them for dinner. There was one mussel that Jonas was chewing for about 5 minutes. He started laughing and it "fell out" into my hair. When we were in the entrance, we picked up the old creel (a shellfish trap) that we had put down when we were going in to Loch Moidart. We had gotten it from a fisherman and had caught 3 crabs. We went to the town of Tobermory and the next day we went to Loch Teacuis. The next place, Loch Drumbuie, Dad had to be on a phone meeting, but the only place there was phone access was right next to a Dutch boat. In Scotland, people try to anchor as far away from each other as possible, so they thought we were being a bit rude. The next day, we did a day stop in the Treshnish Isles. We went for a hike and saw a lot of puffins really close up on the cliff top. Apparently, they come close when there are a lot of people because they know that when humans are there, their predators go away. It was good timing because we were there at the same time as a tourist boat. We left later that day because it was a really sketchy anchorage and went to Craigaig Bay. The previous owner of the cruising guide had written that there was a clearance village there. We had no idea what that was, so we decided to go look. It was really just some old ruins. The day after, we did another day stop in Staffa, where there was cool rock formations. We went into a cave in Zoom, and then got back to Blue Hour very quickly, because it was even more sketchy there and we were rolling around like crazy. In the afternoon, we sailed to Tinker's Hole. It was a cozy spot, but we had to anchor and tie to shore because there was not enough swinging room. I sold some of my baked goods to some other boaters there. It cost 50 pence or a book and I called it the Blue Hour Bakery. Next we went to Loch Tarbert in the Isle of Jura. There was a nice bothy (a house that is left unlocked for people to stay in for the night) there, and we flew our stunt kite that we had bought a few summers ago in the Magdalen Islands. Right now we are in a town called Tayvalich. Our friend Dougie had offered let us send some packages to his address there where his girlfriend lives. There were a lot of packages. We were joking that Dad was looking forward to getting his coffee maker out of one of the boxes, I was looking forward to my book, Jonas was looking forward to his fishing lures, and Mom was getting a toilet seat lid. We went out for dinner with Dougie's girlfriend, Lottie, then went home and unpacked all the packages. It is 10:05 pm and Dad is still not done.

29 July 2017 | Rum, Scotland
Joni
Getting soaked

29 July 2017 | Rum, Scotland
Joni

29 July 2017 | Rum, Scotland
Joni

Island of Rum

29 July 2017 | Rum, Scotland
Joni
We left Malaig in the morning and sailed to the Island of Rum (it has nothing to do with the drink, I think it means something in Norse). It was upwind, so we crashed and banged a lot. There is a very small community there, with only 35 residents. There is a 150 year old summer mansion there and since it was pretty intact, we went ashore and got a tour of it. We went back to Blue Hour and saw the boat called Nina Soraya that we had seen in Loch Scavaig this summer and Greenland the summer before. We invited them over for blueberry pie. The next day it was slightly sunny, so we went for a hike up a hill. It was even wetter that yesterday up there, and we got soaked.

26 July 2017 | Between Mallaig and Fort William, Scotland
Joni
Going over the Glenfinnan Viaduct

26 July 2017 | Between Mallaig and Fort William, Scotland
Joni
On the train

26 July 2017 | Between Mallaig and Fort William, Scotland
Joni
Eating dirt, vomit, earwax, earthworm, rotten egg, and grass flavoured jellybeans

Going on the Hogwarts Express

26 July 2017 | Mallaig, Scotland
Joni
We had a delicious breakfast of croissants from the bakery next door and then did school. The train that departs from the town where Blue Hour is and arrives in another town called Fort William was the same one that was filmed in the Harry Potter movies, so we really wanted to get a ticket on it. The train was fully booked for months in advance and we didn't have a ticket, so we decided to ask if there were any empty seats when the train came in and hope for the best. We were there a few minutes early, and when the train came in we asked a lady who worked there if there were any empty seats. She said there were 4 left, so we bought the tickets. 30 seconds later, another person asked if they could but tickets, but the lady said it was all full because we had bought the last 4. On the train, we bought two sweets from Harry Potter called chocolate frogs and Bertie Bott's Every Flavour Beans. The jelly beans were really every flavour. There were good ones like cherry and marshmallow, but there were also bad ones like vomit, earthworm, earwax, dirt and a lot more. We took turns picking jelly beans randomly from the box and trying to guess what flavour they were. The train was a steam engine, so we could see the smoke wafting past the windows. We went over the Glenfinnan Viaduct, which is where the scene of the Hogwarts Express going over a bridge in the Harry Potter movies is filmed. When we got to Fort William, we took a regular modern train back to the town Mallaig where we were staying. We went for dinner at a really good pizzeria beside Blue Hour, where I had the best cheese pizza in my life.

25 July 2017 | Loch Scavaig, Scotland
Joni
In Loch Scavaig, we pulled Zoom up while we were hiking. There is 15 foot tide here and when we got back, Zoom was high and dry and it wasn't even low tide yet.

25 July 2017 | Gesto Bay, Scotland
Joni
Getting really dizzy

Outer Hebrides and Isle of Skye

25 July 2017 | Opsay Basin, Scotland
Joni
In a place called Opsay Basin, the ground was covered in knee-high humps of moss. They were bouncy and we had fun playing tag there. The next place we went to was Flodday Sound. We did a short hike and then we all went swimming, even Mom and Dad, but Dad wouldn't jump over the side and only got his bum and feet wet. Next we left the Outer Hebrides and went to a place in the Isle of Skye called Gesto bay. There was an old fashioned farmhouse and really loud sheep. We had heard that there was a good pub in a nearby anchorage, so we drove there in our dinghy, Zoom. There was a town there too, and we went to a playground with a really fast spinny thing. Me an Jonas got really dizzy on it. The next place we went to was Loch Scavaig. There were really tall Greenland-like mountains, but with more green on them there. In the anchorage, we happened to see a boat that we had rafted on in Greenland. It was completely a coincidence, and we went to their boat for drinks. Today, we climbed the mountains and got a really good view of where we were anchored. As we pulled up anchor to leave, there was a lot of kelp on the anchor chain, so me and Mom had to get it off with boathook. We are in a town called Maliage now (which is why I have been able to update my blog, because there is internet here). We walked around, had dinner, and went for ice cream.

This is a picture of the strange moss humps.

20 July 2017 | Loch Seaport, Scotland
Joni
Swimming in the ocean!

20 July 2017 | Loch Seaport, Scotland
Joni
In one anchorage, we saw people farming seaweed in these vehicles.

20 July 2017 | Shiant Islands, Scotland
Joni

More Western Scotland

20 July 2017 | Shiant Islands, Scotland
Joni
The morning after arriving in Ullapool, Grandma and Grandpa left to go on a bus to Inverness. We went swimming and found out that the Scottish pools were not nearly as good as the Icelandic ones. We went for lunch at a place called the Seafood Shack. It served a locally caught fish, and the menu changed every day. The food was really delicious, but there was no indoor seating and it was pouring rain outside. On the second day in Ullapool, we went back to the seafood shack because it was so delicious and then went for a hike up Ullapool hill. At the top, it was so windy that you could stand into it and I almost fell over. After a few more days in Ullapool, we sailed to the Shiant islands. They are a small island group between mainland Scotland and the Outer Hebrides and are really beautiful. We talked to the owner and he told us that we should climb up one of the mountains there. It was really hot, and I actually wore shorts for the first time this summer. We thought that we probably shouldn't stay in the Shiants over night because they weren't sheltered very well, so we went to a place in Loch Claidh that I have no idea how to pronounce called Eilean Thinngarstaigh. The next day, we went hiking but it was really hot again and we were taking as much clothe off as possible. When we got back to Blue Hour, I baked and Jonas caught pollock for dinner. Today, we went up Loch Seaport and are in the Narrows Anchorage. We explored a bit and when we got back, me and Jonas decided to go swimming. We got into our wet suites and jumped off the side. The seals on shore watched us.

14 July 2017 | Loch Roe
Joni
The last spoonful of Skyr

14 July 2017 | Loch Roe
Joni
What are those green blobby things with brown stems?

14 July 2017 | Loch Eriboll
Joni
Lots of sheep

West Coast Of Scotland

14 July 2017 | Loch Eriboll
Joni
Sorry I haven't written in so long, we haven't had internet. The west coast of Scotland is beautiful! After leaving the Orkneys, we landed in a place called Loch Eriboll, on the north coast before rounding Cape Wrath to the west coast. Loch Eriboll was our first wilderness anchorage since the start of our cruise in June, so we were really excited. There were stone ruins of a building and kilns. There were also lots of sheep and one of them had a blue patch on the wool behind his head that looked a bit like a mohawk. The next day, we sailed to Badcall Bay (I don't know why it was called that, because it was actually quite nice) and did a lot of kayaking and Opti sailing. We went for a walk along a really fast highway and Grandma bought some langoustine for dinner. We stayed there for 2 nights before sailing to Loch Roe. There was a forest and we were all excited to see one for the first time since Toronto. There were seals everywhere with their pups. We went for a really nice hike and saw some people on horseback. We tried to paddle up a stream, but the current was too strong. After dinner, we sadly finished off our stash of Skyr (an Icelandic product that is sort of like yogourt but way yummier and made from skim-milk) that we had stocked up on in Iceland, and then when we saw that they had it in the Faroe Islands, bought as much as would fill our fridge there, too. Right now, we are sailing into a town called Ullapool and will arrive there in about an hour.

08 July 2017 | Lyness, Orkney Islands, Scotland
Joni
Old fuel pump house used as a museum.

Finally Leaving Stromness

08 July 2017 | Lyness, Orkney Islands, Scotland
Joni
We finally left Stromness today and had a nice sail to a place called Lyness. It is mostly wilderness exept for the remnants of a naval base and the Scapa Flow museum. After eating lunch, we went to the museum, which is about WWI and WWII history. The main building was the old fuel pump house and still had all the machines inside. Me and Grandma went for a walk after we had looked around the museum a bit. When we came back, Mom, Dad, Jonas and Grandpa were watching a documentary in a fuel tank that was set up like a movie theatre, but it wasn't very smart of the people who decided to make it like that because it was a big room so the sound was very quiet and it was made out of metal so there was a lot of echoes. When we got home, we had a special dinner of home-made hamburgers and mashed potatoes.

Sewing & Visitors

07 July 2017 | Stromness, Orkney Islands, Scotland
Joni
Grandma came to visit us today. She arrived at about 5:00 pm, and in the morning after school, we went for a walk. Me and Dad went to what we thought was a sewing store to get supplies for my sewing, but it was actually a dressmaker's shop. She was very nice and gave us some scrap fabric even though we had come to the wrong spot. She told us that the right place to go was a store called Rosie's. They had everything there, so we got what we needed. We bought lunch ate a nearby bakery and sat on a bench outside to eat it. Then we went to the art gallery and back to the boat. I had kayaked my kayak called Sunset and Jonas had sailed his Opti, Pierre, for the first time this year yesterday. It was very fun. Jonas went Opti sailing and I started cutting out my fabric but then I realized that I needed a few more things from Rosie's. The shop closed at 5:00 pm and it was 4:45 pm, so me and Mom quickly ran there and bought what we needed. When we got back, Grandma had arrived and we went put for dinner at a Scottush pub ( it was a different pub than the one we ate dinner at a few days ago). We went for ice cream and then back to Blue Hour

05 July 2017 | Stromness, Orkney Islands, Scotland
Joni
Standing stones

05 July 2017 | Stromness, Orkney Islands, Scotland
Joni
A house in a 5,000 year old settlement

05 July 2017 | Stromness, Orkney Islands, Scotland
Joni
Old mansion

Scotland

05 July 2017 | Stromness, Orkney Islands, Scotland
Joni
We had a very good crossing to the Orkney Islands, which are an archipelago next to and belonging to Scotland. We played on deck part of the time and then dolphins were all around us for as far as we could see for at least half and hour. We arrived in the morning and were very exited to have finally arrived in Scotland. A nice lady who worked at the marina filled our oil tanks and told us what was good to see there. We went on a bus tour on a double-decker bus. It was open at the top so we sat there. We had a really good view, but it was very windy. Our first stop was a settlement that was 5,000 years old. We could see some of their houses and we played on the first big beach that we had seen on a long time. There was also an old mansion that they had restored so we could walk around inside. Our second stop was to some standing stones. There were about 30 of them in a circle. After that, we went back to the town where Blue Hour was docked, called Stromness, and went for dinner at a Scottish pub. The food was very good.

02 July 2017 | Nolsoy, Faroe Islands
Joni
Cod cooked in parchment paper

02 July 2017 | Nolsoy, Faroe Islands
Joni
There is no trees that big in the Faroe Islands, so this one must have washed up. There was a seat carved into it and we were excited to see that much wood.

Nolsoy

02 July 2017 | Nolsoy, Faroe Islands
Joni
Just after lunch, we left Torshavn and went to an island a short distance away, called Nolsoy. It was a bit like Toronto Island is to mainland Toronto. It's a small island away form the busy city and there is a small town there with almost no cars. There is a short ferry ride to get there and people form the mainland come there to walk around. We went for a short walk in Nolsoy and then went to a cafe there. It was really good and we ate cod steamed in parchment paper. For dessert, we had really good home-made waffles with cardamom, which is one of my favourite foods. There was a girl about Jonas's age serving there who lived there named Simona. She went for a hike with us and showed us the way. Then she and her family came over for pie.

01 July 2017 | Torshavn, Faroe Islands
Joni
Canada Day party

01 July 2017 | Torshavn, Faroe Islands
Joni
Playing twister

Rainy Day

01 July 2017 | Torshavn, Faroe Islands
Joni
Happy Canada Day! It was a rainy day so we stayed on the boat most of the day. We got gigantic mussels called horse mussles for lunch and the man selling them told us how to open and clean them. But we had trouble opening them so we went back and asked him to show us again. We still were having trouble but then Dad came home from grocery shopping and did it properly. We pan-fried them and served them on bread. After that, we went back to the market and bought some scallops for dinner. They were small with a red thing at the end. Me, Mom, Dad, and Jonas played twister and then we ate the Canada Day cake I made. Then we played twister again and ate the scallops for dinner (I didn't eat either then mussles or the scallops because I don't like them, but apparently they were really good). After dinner, we went for a walk and went to the playground with the trampolines again. The picture above, going right to left shows us opening the mussels, cleaning them, serving them, and the raw scallops.

30 June 2017 | Torshavn, Faroe Islands
Joni
The cliffs of insanity

30 June 2017 | Torshavn, Faroe Islands
Joni
Traditional Faroese building

Torshavn

30 June 2017 | Torshavn, Faroe Islands
Joni
We went to a market outside our boat after breakfast and school. It was the locals selling traditional Faroese food such as wind-dried sheep, whale meat, and a bird called fulmar. We bought some fish cakes for dinner. Then we went to a playground that had little trampolines built into the ground. After the playground, we had lunch and went on an old fashioned schooner that took people out in excursions because it was docked beside us and the owner had offered to bring us along since there was extra space. It 4 hour trip that took us to see some really high cliffs. When we got back, we had the fish cakes and then we went for an after dinner walk to get some crepes that we saw in an ice cream store, but they were closed. We wandered around town before eating dessert at a cafe beside our boat.

This is is a picture of the market.

29 June 2017 | Torshavn, Faroe Islands
Joni
Successful maiden voyage

29 June 2017 | Torshavn, Faroe Islands
Joni
Torshavn

29 June 2017 | Off the coast of the Faroe Islands
Joni
Cod for dinner!

Going to the Capital

29 June 2017 | Off the coast of the Faroe Islands
Joni
After school, we wandered up to the school in Vestmanna and played at the playground there. Then we headed out for the capital of the Faroe Islands, called Torshavn, and ate lunch underway. We stopped partway through to go cod jigging and Jonas caught the only fish. It was a shock once we got to Torshavn because it was a city and we were used to small towns. Then we wandered around and found an ice cream store where we got ice cream. Then we went home and ate the cod for dinner. Jonas had built a boat out of styrofoam and wood called Card Shark and it had a successful maiden voyage.

28 June 2017 | Vetmanna, Faroe Islands
Joni
Trees!

28 June 2017 | Vestmanna, Faroe Islands
Joni
Fixing the flag halyard

28 June 2017 | Eidi, Faroe Islands
Joni
Blue Hour in Eidi

Passage & Faroe Islands

28 June 2017 | Eidi, Faroe Islands
Joni
We left in the morning for the 36 hour passage to the Faroe Islands, which is an archipelago belonging to Denmark between Iceland and Scotland. It was fairly calm for the ocean and we saw 2 seals, a pod of dolphins, a minke whale, a pod of orca whales, and 3 gannets. We arrived near dinner on the second day in a place in the Faroe Islands called Eidi (it's pronounced Aya, but I don't know why). In the morning, we looked around and went for a walk to the top of a cliff that was one of the highest sheer drops into water in the world. At the bottom, we could see some islands that are called the Giant and the Hag because they were apparently once a giant and a hag who were trying to drag the Faroes to Iceland but the sun came out and petrified them. Then we went to the next place called Vestmanna. I got to go up the mast to put the Faroese flag up. It was beautiful scenery on the trip there and the ocean was flat calm. There are a lot of green roofs in the Faroe Islands and they provide very good insolation. After dinner, we went for a walk and went to a restaurant for dessert. Jonas wanted me to tell you that he caught 5 fish and that he climbed shrouds all the way up to the spreaders.

24 June 2017 | Hofn, Iceland
Joni
Skyr Volcano

24 June 2017 | Hofn, Iceland
Joni
Hot spring

24 June 2017 | Hofn, Iceland
Joni
Glacier hike

Road Trip

24 June 2017 | Hofn, Iceland
Joni
After breakfast we went on a road trip in a rental car. Our first stop was the Glacier Lagoon where you could see many icebergs that had broken off a glacier. We ate lunch there and then we drove to a hike to a glacier. Mom, Grandpa, and Jonas turned back because they were tired but me and Dad went to the end and got up close to the glacier. We went to a hot spring and then we went to a place called Pakkhus for dinner and I had a 'Skyr Volcano' (Skyr is and Icelandic product that is like yogurt but is thicker and creamier).

This is a photo of the Glacier Lagoon.

23 June 2017 | Hofn, Iceland
Joni
Eating lobster soup at lobsterfest

23 June 2017 | Hofn, Iceland
Joni
View behind the boat

Lobsterfest

23 June 2017 | Hofn, Iceland
Joni
We did school on the French boat that was rafted to us, called Tonga so I could improve my french. They had a girl who who was learning to read so I learned with her. After that the girl, Eva, came over and played chess with Jonas. There was a festival going on in Hofn called Lobsterfest and one of the events was lobster soup. They were serving it in someone's front to yard and it was very good. Then we went to another event that was and Icelandic band playing. They were all wearing knitted sweaters and skirts and ankle-rubber boots.

22 June 2017 | Hofn, Iceland
Joni
Statues along the bike path

22 June 2017 | Hofn, Iceland
Joni
Bike/rollerblade ride

22 June 2017 | Hofn, Iceland
Joni
Part of the maritime museum

First Sunny Day in a Long Time

22 June 2017 | Hofn, Iceland
Joni
After school and lunch, we walked to tourist info, a car rental place, and a maritime museum. Then we went for a bike/rollerblade ride along a bike path. Along the bike path there were little models of the planets in our solar system. The sun was at the start of the bike path, and Neptune was at the end. After that, we went swimming. There were 3 water slides and 1 was pitch black inside. Then we had dinner.

20 June 2017 | Hofn, Iceland
Joni
Harbour at Hofn

Hofn

20 June 2017 | Hofn, Iceland
Joni
We arrived in the morning and ate breakfast. We were all feeling a bit sick, so we had a really lazy day. After a late lunch, we finally went to explore Hofn. We went to the visitor's centre but then went back to the boat. We were invited to dinner on another boat that was there, called Tonga. They had sailed from France and had 2 kids. We had cod that a fisherman had given them for dinner and then we went to bed.

19 June 2017 | Off the coast of Iceland
Joni
This was what it looked like overnight.

Sailing to Hofn

19 June 2017 | Off the coast of Iceland
Joni
We left after breakfast and sailed to Hofn (it is pronounced Hup). We sailed all day and all night and arrived at 8:00 am the next day. It was pretty calm, so none of us got really seasick and we saw some orca whales.

18 June 2017 | Vestmannaeyjar, Iceland
Joni
Eating rock candy

18 June 2017 | Vestmannaeyjar, Iceland
Joni
This was a house inside the volcano museum that lava had buried, but they dug it out and built the museum around it.
Vessel Name: Blue Hour
Vessel Make/Model: Westerly Ocean 49
Hailing Port: Toronto
Crew: Jonathon, Nina, Joni, Jonas
Blue Hour's Photos - Main
This is the light show in Cascais, Portugal.
21 Photos
Created 27 September 2017
11 Photos
Created 15 June 2017

Who: Jonathon, Nina, Joni, Jonas
Port: Toronto