sailing Koa e Kea

19 September 2019 | Catania
09 September 2019 | Malta
03 September 2019 | Siracusa
31 August 2019
31 August 2019
22 August 2019 | Taormina
17 August 2019 | Taormina
17 August 2019 | Castelmola
13 August 2019 | Taormina
10 August 2019 | Taormina
07 August 2019 | Taormina
06 August 2019 | Taormina
06 August 2019 | Taormina
04 August 2019 | Taormina Italy
02 August 2019 | Taormina
02 August 2019 | Mediterranean Sea
31 July 2019 | Portopalo Sicily
30 July 2019 | Portopalo
29 July 2019 | Portopalo boat yard
29 July 2019 | Portopalo

Malta again!

19 September 2019 | Catania
vikki Cassar Torreggiani | Hot!
Wellllll.... we left Malta to head back to Sicily to try to get this insurance thing settled . We got back to Portopalo because it’s the nearest anchorage .
While we were there and after a lot of thought,Cam said let’s just forget it, the Italian insurance company was next to impossible to deal with. We were thinking, we could be waiting who knows how long.

So, we decided to go back to Malta and then head towards North Africa, Tunis and then Morocco. Getting us closer to Gilbralter where Cam will start out his Atlantic crossing.

So we were back in Malta again! I was thrilled of course! Malta has great marine supplies and groceries!
We took advantage of both.

While we were there we heard more from the insurance company! So after all that we decided to go back again to Sicily and deal with the boat repair. Off we went again!

When Cam and I first arrived we stayed at the Olive tree ranch. We went on and on about it to Penny and Fred.

We were determined to go have dinner at the ranch! Cam remembered a road right to the beach that the girl at the reception talked about. I remembered seeing people at a beach .( all close to where the boat was on the hard when we came to get it).
We headed off in the dinghy to shore, I told Penny that it may be a beach landing, so, she changed her leather sandals! Wellll uh ya!! It was a beach landing alright!
We were trying to scope the best landing area with our head lamp !
All I could see was Rock walls with big surf hitting them!!😳.
We went for the beach area ... as we got closer a very large wave filled the dinghy and soaked us!! Plus a bunch more behind it.

We were walking to the restaurant squishing as we stepped! Cam and Fred has seaweed all over their legs as they squished along the road!

We arrived at the restaurant a soaking mess! The way back wasn’t as bad ! It didn’t matter we were already drenched.

Next day we headed to Catania a large city in Sicily and where we originally flew in to.
This was after talking back and forth with George to arrange for the boat repair.

We had to go to the commercial docking area. Big transport trucks all around, fishing boats, ferries and huge cruise ships!

We are still here! Our neighbours are large fishing boats who leave about 8:30 at night and return early in the morning. Fred managed to go and get some fresh shrimp.

We have walked around the city quite a bit now. It’s an incredibly historic place! It’s also very sad in that it’s covered with graffiti! Beautiful historic buildings with horrible graffiti on them!

It’s also sad to see the amount of plastic garbage in the harbour. We’ve noticed this fishing boat next to us just dumps it’s plastic bags and other stuff over the side of the boat each day! Awful!

It hasn’t been the most ideal place to be, but we’ve made the best of it. We have two local cats that come regularly for fish handouts. At night we see that they’ve been boarding the boat, little black paw prints everywhere.

Today was really hot! Thankfully later in the day we had a big downpour and a breeze.

Penny and Fred leave in a couple of days. We will head back to Taormina if the paint on the fix is ready.
We miss swimming! You can’t swim in this harbour that’s for sure.

We have A sailor friend Brian arriving early October and he will be sailing across the Atlantic with Cam and another friend, Cory.

Not sure what will go on between then and now!

Bye for now!

We made it to Malta

09 September 2019 | Malta
vikki Cassar Torreggiani | Hot but cooler at night
We left Portopalo very early to head off to Malta, about 60km.
The Sea had very large swells! A little intimidating for me! We didn’t have a lot of wind but managed to sail . We had the main sail up and at times one other, makes the ride a bit smoother.
Cam seemed fine but the rest of us were a bit squeezy!

It was a long day, we arrived about 10 hours later . Seeing the Island from a boat was different than arriving at the airport... that’s for sure! For me, very special I never imagined this.

We headed into an area we thought we could anchor but it didn’t seem quite right. We left that spot and came around the corner to a beautiful area with an incredible view of the Valletta area .

The Royal Malta Yacht Club is right here as well and after calling a cousin here ( also a sailor) he gave us some good tips on where to take the dinghy.

We headed in to shore for dinner at the “ Black Pearl” an old ship now on shore and a restaurant. It started to pour rain, always good for a boat wash.

The next day we went in again to go and find a marine store. The back shower head needs to be replaced.
We were greeted by “ Joey” who is with the Yacht club.My cousin had called him, he said we could put the dinghy right at the RMYC. It was safe and secure there.

We found some part things and came back to the boat, Cam and Fred got started figuring out what was going on with the shower leaking.
They found a bunch of water and pumped it out. Cam could likely explain this much better than me!

Still need some more to parts to totally fix it.

The first touring we did was to head to Sliema and Balluta Bay. One, I wanted to see my Dad’s house which is still there, thankfully it’s a heritage site and can not be knocked down like so many of the other original Villas along the waterfront; and two, I was on a mission to have a a wonderful Maltese pastry called “ Pastizzi. They are so good.

It was incredible to share this with Cam ( I blabbed a lot about the pastries and Dad’s history ) Also to share with our friends from Kamloops... wow!

We did both and had a fantastic day.

Yesterday we went on the hop on hop off bus around the Island. This is such a great way to fit it all in and you have such s good view . First we walked around Valletta, I had a lot of memories from when I was here with Dad and my sisters. So glad I had that opportunity to be here with Dad because he could show us around and talk about his life in Malta.

Then back on the bus to Mdina the ancient walled village above . I love Mdina! You can imagine life there 500 years ago or so.

Malta has allowed buying passports- causing all kinds of unrest. Apparently the people that are buying passports are the type that can’t get one in other countries. It costs a lot of money . There’s building going on all over big cranes .Sad to see , the Island is not that big.
The people are protesting and trying to stop this, I hope they do.

It’s great to have Fred and Penny with us. Lots of laughs and many old high school stories.

We met up with the Kelowna couple we came across in Taormina. They were having their boat worked on here. That was fun to chat again . As life goes... it turns out they had friends in common with Fred and Penny .

We are having lunch today with my cousin David and his wife Hazel as well as a second cousin Edward ( we haven’t quite figured out how we are related yet lol)

Next stop Gozo.

Onward .
I’ll be back .

Anchors away? Sort of!

03 September 2019 | Siracusa
vikki Cassar Torreggiani | Hot and a bit cloudy
We decided to head off to Siracusa, Sicily approximately 45nm away.
Our first big sail! We wanted to test all the sails and anything else along the way.
A very nice sail- it did get a bit slow but that’s all good when it’s a first go!

The main sail is huge! Beautiful sail!

We arrived in Siracusa, and it was dark .. according to our cruisers guide we were going to go in a certain area of the bay.
Penny was on the lookout and noticed some strange looking things in the water, and a lot of them!
So, we decided to go to another anchorage area.

We had thunder and lightning that night but woke up to a very nice day! Partly cloudy which is great for sight seeing. We loaded in to the dinghy and headed to shore to hopefully find an area to put the dinghy ( a bit of talk about dinghies being stolen) . Eventually we found a spot and headed off to tour around the town.

First stop was Castello Maniace, an ancient castle- 1240 ish give or take a few years ! It was hard to believe it could possibly be still be there!
Walking through I was imagining the hustle and bustle of the time.

Then we headed for a cold beer! It was really hot ( they seem to know Canadians like beer and play hockey! Hmmm?). A nice little place !
The view of course was stunning and we could even see the boat :-).

Penny and I managed to find a lovely dress shop packed with gorgeous dresses! We controlled ourselves.. the guys were a bit impatient lol.

The main square was just amazing, I’ve been to other places in Italy but this place was so impressive.
We continued on to walk through the charming streets full of quaint cafes and shops. We stumbled across a grocery store and stocked up on um “ Birra” oh and... veggies too.

Back to the boat for dinner .
Suddenly,.. Cam said “ we’ve dragged!
It happens, but this time is was a bit more complicated! Cam went to raise the anchor and nothing happened? He kept trying while Fred kept the boat steady.
After many attempts Cam realized he would need to crawl into the anchor locker to check the connections ( now my verbiage on these terms are not quite accurate, but you’ll get my drift right!)
This is a terribly awkward space for a guy his height,nevertheless he ventured in. After a lot of tools going down there Cam found out that whim ever installed the batteries didn’t tighten the connections therefore the windless anchor was not working.
All good! He fixed it ( of course ).
Then we were able to bring up the anchor and soon found out why we dragged! There was a huge chunk of carpet which the anchor had pierced so it didn’t get a good grip! Wow!

Although it was kind of intense ( for me anyway.. chicken ) it was a good thing it happened because we discovered that the connections weren’t done properly.

Whew! That night we relaxed and woke up the next day to head off to Porto Palo ( same place we started from where the boat was on the hard)

We had a nice sail from Siracusa to Porto Palo - we didn’t have a lot of wind but it’s good for learning. ( my opinion lol).

Well looks like tomorrow we are fine balky going to go to Malta . It seems that the weather will be fine. We will hang around there for a week or so.
Pretty exciting for me of course! Really looking forward to seeing my relatives that live in Gozo and Malta. Also excited to share where my Dad lived with Cam and Fred and Penny.

Boy, I sure never thought I would be on a sail boat sailing to Malta! Crazy! Wish my Dad was alive, he would have been so excited to know this.

It was raining but seems to have stopped. The sun is shining and we are having a lovely visit tonight.

More sooooon!
Cheers from us!

Still here!

31 August 2019
vikki Cassar Torreggiani
We are still in Taormina- and what a beautiful place to be ! Everything takes time ... quite a bit of time.

We started the engine and it made a squealing sound ... not unlike the sound it was making before we got the new Alternator belts. Cam checked it out and they were really loose! We needed them to be tightened, normally a job Cam can do but he's a bit of a loss without his usual tools. Cam took them all off and did some " stuff" down there !
We still needed " Giuseppe" to come by ( the guy that put the new ones in)..
All good now!
Fred and Penny arrived, long time friends from Kamloops days. Just great to have them on board!

It's been very hot here, the last couple of days are overcast but still very humid. In the ocean we go! There's not much else you can do in the heat- it's ok... we like it !

Cam and Fred worked in the washing machine today to replace the belt ( yes yet another belt!)
Easier said than done! They had to remove the drawer above the washer then stick their hand behind to get at the washer! It worked YAY.. but still something wasn't right. Cam found a bunch of sand in the filter - a LOT. Of sand. Couldn't have been good for it.
We are pretty sure we now have a fully functioning washing machine.

We had our first Gelato the other day- oh wow...wow. Stupidly good!
Pistachio yum!

We continue to go to town and get veggies and other groceries. We've found a favourite cheese and meat place. The Provolone is incredible! There in little bundles and you choose the size you want, truly yummy!!

Hard not to talk about the food here!! It's all about it here! Also a big part of the sailing community. As we stroll through the town you come across the usual shops and little veggie trucks full of local veg and fruit.
The peaches give the Okanagon a run for their money alright!

I've been buying the local herbs for pasta- there's so many! Sicily is a little spicier than other parts of Italy.
You sprinkle this bag of incredibleness( this may not be a legal word)on your food!

Our days our keeping out of the sun! We thought Kamloops was hot in the summer- well this is quite a lot different! The humidity is unreal! I used to brag about how I never sweat!! Uh... not here! Drip.. drip!
Ah well, it's not bad in the whole scheme of things. 😊

We are really enjoying seeing all these incredible yachts that come and go here! It's quite unreal! These yachts are HUGE- 50' becomes small time here. It keeps it interesting!

Yesterday we were sitting on the deck and suddenly there was this really loud BANG- it was like nothing I've heard before ! I immediately thought" oh no, Mt Etna is exploding ". ( I had the recent news of the other volcano in Sicily erupting lol)
Well it was just a local thing I guess! Many explosions went off ! So loud!



We think we are ready to go for a sail! We will go out for the day and check that everything is in order.

We can't thank Google Translate App enough! Holy! It has been so fantastic! I had to take the laundry in sheets etc. Even that was an ordeal! Out came our phones to sort the pick up time choices! Whether we pay before or after. Things we just take for granted everyday.

This weekend is the 50th Anniversary of the BC Multihull Society- wishing them well! And congrats on such a milestone.

Not too much else exciting to say !
We are really enjoying our friends and will keep you posted !

Ciao all!! Stay well!


Still here!

31 August 2019
vikki Cassar Torreggiani
We are still in Taormina- and what a beautiful place to be ! Everything takes time ... quite a bit of time.

We started the engine and it made a squealing sound ... not unlike the sound it was making before we got the new Alternator belts. Cam checked it out and they were really loose! We needed them to be tightened, normally a job Cam can do but he’s a bit of a loss without his usual tools. Cam took them all off and did some “ stuff” down there !
We still needed “ Giuseppe” to come by ( the guy that put the new ones in)..
All good now!
Fred and Penny arrived, long time friends from Kamloops days. Just great to have them on board!

It’s been very hot here, the last couple of days are overcast but still very humid. In the ocean we go! There’s not much else you can do in the heat- it’s ok... we like it !

Cam and Fred worked in the washing machine today to replace the belt ( yes yet another belt!)
Easier said than done! They had to remove the drawer above the washer then stick their hand behind to get at the washer! It worked YAY.. but still something wasn’t right. Cam found a bunch of sand in the filter - a LOT. Of sand. Couldn’t have been good for it.
We are pretty sure we now have a fully functioning washing machine.

We had our first Gelato the other day- oh wow...wow. Stupidly good!
Pistachio yum!

We continue to go to town and get veggies and other groceries. We’ve found a favourite cheese and meat place. The Provolone is incredible! There in little bundles and you choose the size you want, truly yummy!!

Hard not to talk about the food here!! It’s all about it here! Also a big part of the sailing community. As we stroll through the town you come across the usual shops and little veggie trucks full of local veg and fruit.
The peaches give the Okanagon a run for their money alright!

I’ve been buying the local herbs for pasta- there’s so many! Sicily is a little spicier than other parts of Italy.
You sprinkle this bag of incredibleness( this may not be a legal word)on your food!

Our days our keeping out of the sun! We thought Kamloops was hot in the summer- well this is quite a lot different! The humidity is unreal! I used to brag about how I never sweat!! Uh... not here! Drip.. drip!
Ah well, it’s not bad in the whole scheme of things. 😊

We are really enjoying seeing all these incredible yachts that come and go here! It’s quite unreal! These yachts are HUGE- 50’ becomes small time here. It keeps it interesting!

Yesterday we were sitting on the deck and suddenly there was this really loud BANG- it was like nothing I’ve heard before ! I immediately thought” oh no, Mt Etna is exploding “. ( I had the recent news of the other volcano in Sicily erupting lol)
Well it was just a local thing I guess! Many explosions went off ! So loud!



We think we are ready to go for a sail! We will go out for the day and check that everything is in order.

We can’t thank Google Translate App enough! Holy! It has been so fantastic! I had to take the laundry in sheets etc. Even that was an ordeal! Out came our phones to sort the pick up time choices! Whether we pay before or after. Things we just take for granted everyday.

This weekend is the 50th Anniversary of the BC Multihull Society- wishing them well! And congrats on such a milestone.

Not too much else exciting to say !
We are really enjoying our friends and will keep you posted !

Ciao all!! Stay well!


Making progress!

22 August 2019 | Taormina
vikki Cassar Torreggiani | Hot
Things are getting done! We even went out for a sail! Not enough wind though, but good practice.

A few days ago we decided to rent a car and drive to Catania, a bigger city and where we flew into originally.

So, you would think you could just book a car online? Hmmm,not so easy. We tried the company here and it said closed; also, no cars available!
We really needed to go and get the computer in to the Apple store there ( no way we could get it going with Apple on line).
We started to plan a trip by train, it’s really not bad from here just awkward with a 27” monitor.

Fortunately our trusty guy here, George, somehow just called the rental place and booked us a car ! He knows everyone! Even knew the guy who was the Captain of the boat that backed into us.

We also decided we better get a new motor for the dinghy, the one that was already here and that we were so excited about because it’s electric... was shot! It was not reliable.
So trusty George sent us to the YAMAHA dealer in Catania. They were wonderful- mentioning that George sent us they gave us a better deal!

We had to get the computer to Apple for a 12:00 pm appointment- the YAMAHA store closes at 1:00 to 4:00
We told them we would come back for the motor. It was 11:30!

We flew out the door to find the Apple store- again a challenge- we found it but where to park? Cam just parked behind the store and I waited in the car! It didn’t take long and the Apple guy was able to get it going... yay! But, he said there was nothing on it ! Supposed to be all the documentation for the boat. We packed it back in the car and quickly drove back to YAMAHA.

The motor was ready ! The family recommended a local Fish restaurant. After a lot of gestures and phone translation the Father said to follow him on his motorcycle and that we could park at his other YAMAHA shop which is closer to the restaurant! He zoomed in and out of traffic all the while looking back for us lol.

We made it and the restaurant was Avery happening place! A modern take away or eat in place. SO busy- the food was just fantastic.

George also have us the name of a place that sells washing machines so we could get the new belt for ours.
Finding that place was an experience! I honestly don’t know how we would find anything without the use of my phone gps!
We followed what the gps said even know it seemed like we were heading into a residential condo complex!!! Drove down this steep road and lo and behold at the end was this big commercial place that sells washing machines!!

On the way to that place we noticed what looked like a mall!! We headed there and found a huge grocery store!
We picked up a few more things like a printer! Yes we did!
I avoided the shoe and clothing stores lol!

Then we headed back to Taormina!

Progress was made. That was quite the day!

When we put the computer on back at the boat it didn’t work!!! Whatever he did didn’t happen. Cam has to change bract Apple chat online... again but at least this time we had more info . Finally after losing connection with the chat and starting over.., Cam got it going !!

Today a nice couple noticed our Canadian flag and came by to say hi.
They bought their boat in France 10 months ago and have been sailing around . They’re from Kelowna if you can believe it. Great to chat and we will get together before they head off to Malta.

We’ve tested out our new dinghy motor and it works beautifully! Nice to have that’s for sure.

Next steps are booking in the boat to get the repair done . They said it won’t take long.

Cam is working on getting his Mexican TIP cancelled for the old boat- he started the process last May/ well he just found out they’ve received what he sent ... so that was positive lol. It has to be done before we go there.

All in all the “loose ends” list is getting smaller.

Once in awhile it hits me “we live on this boat” ha ha! Pretty darn fortunate to have this experience..

Miss you all and hoping that you are enjoying the blog ( don’t want to bore lol)

⛵️⚓️❤️




Vessel Name: Koa e Kea
Vessel Make/Model: Pinta 53
Hailing Port: Victoria BC
Crew: Vikki and Cam
About: Cam and Vikki have been living in Salt Spring Island during the summer months and Mexico in the winter.
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