Back in Syracuse
24 May 2010
We left Malta for Syracuse with a good weather forecast and were not disappointed, beating our previous time between Malta and Syracuse by 4 hours! Deep Blue was obviously glad to be out on the sea again and seemed to enjoy the trip as much as we did.
Next day, the sun shone and we relaxed whilst getting used to being at anchor again bobbing up and down. Then for the most part of the following week, the wind blew and blew. Sounds familiar? It also rained very dirty rain and poor Deep Blue was covered in red sand, much worse than she had ever experienced in Malta. So, we got to work and washed her down as best we could.
As it was blowing quite strongly outside, I decided that I needed a change of hair colour and Chris had his initiation into colouring my hair. He did a pretty good job and I haven't managed to find any white hairs that he missed yet though I am confident that they will make a strong return soon, unfortunately.
There is always something to do on a boat. Whilst we were watching the Monaco Grand Prix, I went to get Chris a cold beer and noticed that it wasn't as cold as it should have been. After the race we took a look and worked out that the fridge thermostat has given up. Luckily, we found a service guy in town who specialised in our make of fridge. He was a great find and specialises in all kinds of boat electrics. He spoke fluent French, so language wasn't a problem, and he was able to supply a new thermostat for us and we were soon able to make ice again for our gin and tonics - phew!
During our time in the anchorage, we met up with American friends, Ni and Chris aboard their catamaran Finalmente. We had spent 10 days together in Syracuse before we returned to Malta last year. Also here was Fred and Gherda from Holland on their boat Pegasus. They spent the winter in Malta, like us, and were on their way to Greece for the summer, stocking up on wine and other goodies before heading off. Syracuse is a great crossroads in the Mediterranean and it wasn't long before boats going east and boats going west met up for drinks aboard Finalmente. Old friendships reignited and new ones made.
The unsettled weather is now calming and we are going from too much wind to none at all. Sounds familiar again? It's time to move on, our next stop will be to Roccella Ionica on the south coast of Italy where we will be able to give the boat a good wash to get rid of the final remnants of red mud. We're also looking forward to a metre of pizza.
For any boat electric problems, call Pietro Mauceri on 333 7308661 (mobile). Address Elettonautica di Pietro Mauceri, Viale Montedoro 85. The street is parallel (north) to the main street Corso Umberto. Pietro is out and about during the day and the shop is manned by his wife. He is at the shop between 6 - 8pm. He can deal with any electrics including Raymarine, Frigoboat, Victron & Mastervolt.
The new marina is still not finished and locals do not expect it to be for another 4-5 years. Planning permission was granted in the 1970's so that says it all.
The new quay for super yachts is also not finished. Apparently, the concrete caissons that are standing along the quay have been condemned due to poor concrete quality. Locals say that work should commence again once palms have been crossed. Watch this space. For cruisers, nothing has changed regarding anchoring.