The adventures of Yacht Flirtie

07 July 2023 | Sicily, Marina di Ragusa (position: 36 46.863'N 14 32.701'E)
21 December 2022 | Ashton under Hill
15 August 2022 | Sicily, Marina di Ragusa (position: 36 46.863'N 14 32.701'E)
11 July 2022 | Spaggio dei Gigli (position: 38 54.862'N 17 03.060'E)
08 July 2022 | Italy, Rocella Ionica, Porto delle Grazie (position: 38 19.266'N 16 25.835'E)
05 July 2022 | Sicily, Siracusa (position: 37 03.382'N 15 16.675'E)
04 July 2022 | Sicily, Portopalo (36 40.184'N 15 06.769'E)
30 June 2022 | Sicily, Marina di Ragusa (position: 36 46.863'N 14 32.701'E)
10 March 2022 | Sicily, Marina di Ragusa (position: 36 46.863'N 14 32.701'E)
05 March 2022 | Sicily, Marina di Ragusa (position: 36 46.863'N 14 32.701'E)
01 March 2022 | Sicily, Marina di Ragusa (position: 36 46.863'N 14 32.701'E)
10 January 2022 | Sicily, Marina di Ragusa (position: 36 46.863'N 14 32.701'E)
16 December 2021 | Ashton under Hill
16 August 2021 | Sicily, Boat Service Trapani (position: 38.00.840'N 12.31.297'E)
14 August 2021 | Sicily, Trapani (position 38 00.427'N 12 30.245'E) eastern anchorage behind southern breakwater
12 August 2021 | Sicily, Cornino (position: 38 05.712'N 12 39.510'E)
09 August 2021 | Sicily, Terrasini Sud (position: 38 09.412'N 13 04.709'E)
07 August 2021 | Sicily, Palermo, Nautica Galizzi (position: 38 07.372'N 13 22.218'E)
01 August 2021 | Sicily, Termini Imerese (position: 37 58.851'N 13 42.872'E) & Artemar Marina

We've escaped and we're out sailing!

16 August 2023
Bruce & Caroline Trott
Finally, we've left the marina! Our current destination is Malta where a new dinghy awaits collection. The dinghy is the final critical job on the list after we replaced the steering cables and batteries.

The steering cable was straightforward to refit. Onesail, our local sail loft provided new cables in less than 24 hours as they were about to shutdown for the European holidays (typically the months of July and August, when locals take their beach breaks) so our timing was lucky. The reinstall involved coating two 6 plus meter long cables with teflon grease before feeding them through their respective whitlock rollers and conduits until they reached the steering quadrant hidden deep in the aft locker.

fitting the cables around the steering quadrant

As for the batteries, we started out with the intention of sourcing batteries with identical dimensions that would fit the existing battery box. Unfortunately this idea was not to be because we found that we couldn't achieve a "like for like" replacement locally (unless we ordered from the UK at a cost of €350 import fee) without accepting a loss of amperage which would have been a backward step for us. Apart from going lithium iron phosphate we had no choice but to modify the existing battery box. A larger box has allowed us to increase our domestic battery bank from 380amps to 420amps using European batteries so we are very pleased and when funds allow there is now ample room for lithium. Now, a dinghy awaits us - Malta here we come.

We've returned... back aboard Flirtie

07 July 2023 | Sicily, Marina di Ragusa (position: 36 46.863'N 14 32.701'E)
Bruce & Caroline Trott
A skip full of old carpets, outdated fitted furniture and left items from previous tenants!

What started out as a brief return visit to the UK turned out to be the best part of 10 months due to a catalogue of unforseen family related events.

We returned initially to just redecorate and renovate our house in order for us to relet it and by mid October that was almost complete. Whilst decorating, both of our mums made the huge decisions to move into care homes within their respective counties. Thankfully we both have sisters, so as and when time permitted we could work as a team to identify suitable carehomes and empty their respective properties in a timely fashion to get them on the market. With one property completed and a sale pending on the other we thought that things had settled enough for us to return back to Sicily. Flights were booked for June but had to be cancelled suddenly because of a family bereavement. Caroline's Dad fell and broke his hip, was subsequently operated on but sadly died a few days later.

By July we had reached the point where things had settled once again with only the occasional email or letter requiring our attention. These could be actioned either from abroad or by our sisters, so finally we have returned to Flirtie. It's great to be back aboard but we're now faced with sorting a bank of batteries that no longer hold charge, a corroded steering cable with several broken strands along its length and a dinghy with glued seams that continue to part because of the heat. We're feeling that Flirtie has had a tantrum - clearly she has missed us!

Needless to say, we're not going anywhere until we remedy the above.

Merry Christmas

21 December 2022 | Ashton under Hill
Bruce & Caroline Trott
Merry Christmas | Vrolijk Kerstfeest | Joyeux Noël | Feliz Navidad | Feliz Natal | Buon Natale

Wishing all our family, friends and followers a very Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year.

"Christmas is all about spending time with friends and family and creating memories that will last forever. Let’s celebrate this wonderful occasion this season. Merry Christmas everyone".

Plans change!

15 August 2022 | Sicily, Marina di Ragusa (position: 36 46.863'N 14 32.701'E)
Bruce & Caroline Trott
It's over 10 years since we became liveaboards so we are now well versed in not having set plans. In fact we've become very flexible with rough plans and ideas and mindful that they are subject to change at a moment's notice. Unfortunately we received notice from our letting agency that our tenant would be vacating our property and that it would now need remodernising and redecoration before reletting it. A couple of quotations soon proved to us that we had no choice but to return to do the work ourselves. With the decision made there seemed little point in sailing to Greece for only a couple of weeks so instead we retraced our steps back to Marina di Ragusa via Rocella Ionica, Naxos, Siracusa and Portopalo. We did however fit in an inproptu and glorious sail over to Malta and back due to the arrival of unexpected wind. Fabulous.

At Naxos, a stunning view over to Taoramina. At Portopalo, an emotional and thought prevoking moment watching the arrival of hundreds of migrants been rescued. At Malta, exploring caves.

Naturally we're disappointed to have not sailed further east but unexpected events out of our control happen, even for liveaboards living the dream!

Total distance this season: 528.39 miles

Italy, Rocella Ionica to (almost) Crotone

11 July 2022 | Spaggio dei Gigli (position: 38 54.862'N 17 03.060'E)
Bruce & Caroline Trott
Our next destination should have been Crotone, located at the extreme western corner of the Golfo di Taranto, in the 'arch' of Italy's boot. From Rocella Ionica our journey required us to cross the Golfo di Squillace, otherwise known as the Bay of Squalls before rounding Capo Rizzuto and onwards to Crotone, a distance of approximately 60 miles.

Summer winds in this area are reported to be light to moderate SW or SE sea breezes until reaching the Golfo di Squillace where winds can blow strongly from the W or NW so we didn't really know whether we'd be able to sail or not and in particular what the wind was actually going to do given the mountainous coastline and light winds predicted.

For several hours we motored in a lollopy sea. It was an uncomfortable ride until we entered the bay where the sea flattened out. A short while later a respectable NNE wind arrived which allowed us to finally switch off the engine and sail onwards towards the headland of Capo Rizzuto. However, as it drew ever nearer conditions changed, the wind shifted to follow the headland then strengthened to become right on our nose! Our existing course would now require several tacks for us to get around it and add hours to the day. In such a short space of time the sea became uncomfortable and we knew that progress was going to be slow from here onwards. We didn't fancy a tiresome slog into uncomfortable seas with the potential of arriving at Crotone in the dark so instead we decided to take shelter for the night in a marine reserve just tucked behind the headland. It was a welcome and useful anchorage and ideally suited to allow an early morning start to motor around it and onwards to Crotone.

Total distance this season: 206.16 nautical miles
Vessel Name: Yacht Flirtie
Vessel Make/Model: Trident Voyager 40
Hailing Port: Dartmouth, UK
Crew: Bruce and Caroline Trott
Welcome to Sailing Yacht Flirtie's blog. We are Bruce and Caroline and this blog serves as a personal record of our adventures and experiences since leaving the UK in 2012 whilst allowing family and friends to keep up-to-date with our whereabouts. [...]
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Yacht Flirtie's Photos - Seville 2015
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Yacht Flirtie

Who: Bruce and Caroline Trott
Port: Dartmouth, UK

Where are we now?