Freebird's bound for the island of Cyprus. The distant coast of Israel is in our wake. As we watch the land fade into the mist, we reflect on our Israeli experiences. Our last week was spent hanging with our new friends celebrating two birthdays, squeezing in a day trip back to Jerusalem and a visit to Bethlehem, We even got in a little beach time. Memories of Israel will hold a special place for us.
Our sail is once again.... not a "sail".... but a "MOTOR!". The wind just won't cooperate. It's hot. With no wind to cool us, it's down right miserable. We're only running on one motor. This gives us a max speed of about 5.5 knots. We just filled our fuel tanks at over $8.00 US per a gallon. Each motor burns about three quarters of a gallon per hour. This all equates to operating cost of about ten dollars per hour for two motors. (over $1.50 US per nautical mile) This combination will give us a speed of about 6.5 knots. We only gain one knot of speed for double the cost. We arrived in Larnaca, Cyprus after 34 hours, with only 4 hours of sailing. BROTHER!!!
Our friends Tim and Rose from the yacht "Rendezvous Cay" were on the dock to welcome us. We quickly deployed the air conditioner and retreated to the coolness of the cabin. We can only run our AC when we are connected to shore power. Normally I fight turning the thing on. I don't like the feeling of confinement and the sudden temperature changes as you move in and out of the cabin. This time......there was no resistance from me. God bless that wonderful machine! We arrived around sunset. Our next appearance on deck was 14 hours later, in the morning. You couldn't pry us from the comfort of our little nest. We peddled into the city for some coffee. The headlines of the local rag said "RECORD HIGH TEMPERATURES EXPECTED TO CONTINUE!" Our previous day of misery was reported to be a staggering 46.7 degrees C. (116 degrees f.) No wonder! I thought we were just turning into wimps......
We used our trusty bikes and spent the next few days exploring our new surroundings. Wow! Civilization..... nice restaurants, Starbucks, hardware stores, .....Stay tuned..