Alan and Jean sharing our cruising news with friends, family.

20 July 2015 | Rabi Island Fiji
29 June 2015 | Suva Fiji
18 December 2013 | Auckland
05 December 2013 | Auckland
27 October 2013 | Vavau Tonga
12 September 2013 | Samoa
24 July 2013 | Moorea, Tahiti
19 July 2013 | Papeete
19 June 2013 | Nuka Hiva
02 June 2013 | Pacific Ocean
29 May 2013 | Pacific Ocean
24 May 2013 | Eastern Pacific Ocean
19 May 2013 | Western Pacific Ocean
16 May 2013 | Western Pacific Ocean
13 May 2013 | Isla Isabella
06 May 2013 | Isla Isabella
08 April 2013 | Shelter Bay marina, Colon.
28 March 2013 | Belize
27 March 2013 | Belize
03 March 2013 | Panamarina, Panama

The 2010 cruising season comes to an end

26 October 2010 | Finike, Turkey
26th October 2010
Mama saying goodbye to her hitchhiking husband

"Are you coming to me? Or am I coming to you?"

" You are definitely coming to us."

Not an invitation for drinks to watch the approaching sunset but an inexperienced boatman wondering why the nice newish Lagoon 43 catamaran he is in charge of is about to impale itself on our bowsprit.
"turn on your motor and pull up the anchor." Alans advice as the catamaran got closer. Which he did but instead of motoring forward he just pulled up the anchor so the drift towards us quickened. Alan trying not to get too agitated, told him to put it in gear and motor forward, just as the catamaran dinghy davits pinged across our bowsprit he got the message and drove away from us. He then spent the next ten minutes trying to co-ordinate himself between bringing up the anchor, motoring around a crowded anchorage and frantically phoning someone to come and help. Eventually a dinghy flying across the harbor bought a couple of people who knew what they were doing.

The next night, just as we were about to go to bed a drifting yacht scraped down our side, we dashed out into the cockpit in time to fend off its bow as it drifted past. There was no answer to our shouts, no lights on, no one on board. What to do? Alan decided to go off in the dinghy and try and do something as it headed for other yachts. Luckily another cruiser decided to do the same thing. So between them they got the yacht in control and tied it to a large Swiss yacht on the outskirts of the anchorage. Understandably they didn't want the yacht there all night. The marinas were called they didn't want to know and said call the Guvenlik, (coastguard) they didn't really want to know either. So after a while when coast guard didn't turn up as promised Alan and his new German acquaintance took the yacht into the Town marina, tied it up in an empty berth leaving it for them to deal with in the morning. We always hope that if Tuatara ever decides to wander someone will help so Alan doesn't mind helping out but we would have liked to have seen the reaction from the boatie and the marina people in the morning.

Two nights anchored at Gocek both eventful before we moved onto Fethiye where we had a week on uneventful anchoring. The thick mud in Fethiye held us through some strong winds. After an enjoyable week in Fethiye we decided the wind was going to be good for getting around the Seven capes and on to Kas, just 40 miles from our winter home of Finike. The countdown to the end of our cruising season had started. The promise of wind got us moving but we only had a little spurt at the Capes then it was a motor all the way. At Kas we anchored near Silver Fern and spent the evening playing Canasta, well if I can be a little show off ish we slaughtered them. We are beginners in Canasta, a card game they taught us. Bryce being highly competitive was itching for a return match so the next night we beat them again! Although I do have to admit that last night Martha and Bryce caught up and the series is now 3-3 a good place to start next year when they return from NZ.

In between canasta games we hired a car and the four of us did a day trip to see the ancient cities/ruins of Patara and Xanthos. Patara is slightly inland now although from about the 3rd Century BC and earlier through until the Middle Ages Patara was an important trading port for the area. The city declined as the river entrance became silted up. The Ampitheatre is quite intact but the nearby Parliament building is being restored. Alan and Bryce were more interested in the machinery and methods used to cut the huge blocks of limestone being made to replace missing walls. We then carried on to Xanthos , two sets of ruins in one day is a step too far for Alan but even he was impressed with the buildings and remains left to see in both places. At Xanthos there are large areas of mosaics but they are covered with sand, a special cloth then gravel to keep the colours until roofs can be built over them. The small areas that are uncovered for visitors to see show intricate colourful patterns. Xanthos has some impressive ruins but some are copies because the originals are in the British Museum , some say plundered some say protected by Sir Charles Fellows who discovered the site in 1838. Would be nice to see the originals back in place.

The trip from Kas to Patara and Xanthos took us along the coast road so we decided to return on the inland road. The inland road took us through the out skirts of Kinik, through acres of plastic covered hot houses growing tomatoes, capsicum, beans, and many other vegetables. As we climbed into the hills the landscape changed to grapes vines and goats. Small villages became further and further apart. Then someone thought to ask,

" hows the petrol have we got enough to get back?"

Being stingy yachties we had only put in 50 lira of Petrol when we left Kas, and now not a petrol station in sight and it was late in the afternoon. The ever confident Bryce, whose turn it was to drive, said, " yes of course there is plenty" but every now and again he would peer worryingly at the guage to see if the light had come on. We said, ok but you will be the one walking in the dark to get it. We then had a delightful distraction from our petrol concerns, as we slowly rounded a corner on the narrow road an old Turkish man waved us down. We weren't sure if he was waving us down or not but we stopped any way. He then dashed across the road and climbed a grape vine to cut two large bunches of grapes. None of us could understand what he said but we all agreed we thought he wanted a ride somewhere. So we waited while he dashed into his house calling out "Mama, Mama". His wife... we presume, came out with a plastic bag for the grapes which he had already dunked in a barrel of water on the door step. The old guy gave the grapes to the men in the front and came and sat in the back with Matha and I.

"I think this means he wants a ride!"

We weren't sure if he was coming to Kas with us or somewhere in between. For about the next 3 Kms he talked happily away in Turkish, I am not quite sure what about but then in a small village we got the message, time to stop and let him out. With handshakes all round he went off to join his mates for his afternoon chat and game of backgammon. The grapes were lovely and we had had a delightful interlude.

A few miles on, having only seen herds of goats, no villages let alone petrol stations for several miles we again asked the driver about the petrol status. We kidded Bryce that we should have kept the grapes for dinner in case we had to wait while he went off to find petrol. We got back to Kas with just enough petrol, Bryce having coasted down the last few hills. As we were coasting down the last hills several paragliders were silently floating their colourful shutes down over top of us to land at the new marina in Kas.

We had chosen the right day to go on our trip there was no wind and the boats were still in place, the weedy anchorage was a bit of a worry, not so good holding. The next afternoon just on dark the wind got up and we got a little close to the shore and with a strong on shore breeze we decided to shift. The Kas area is deep but we found a place to anchor just outside the town harbor in the lee of the hills. We managed to get a tenuous hold in 25 metres on a ledge but through the night we slowly slipped out to about 40 metres luckily the wind dropped but if it had come up again we would have been out into the bay very quickly. When Alan came to bed at 1am he said I didn't need to get up for anchor watch as all was very still. But I couldn't sleep so got up to keep an eye on the GPS and snooze my way through the rest of the night. By 7.30am we were on our way to Kekova Roads, a nice muddy shallow anchorage for a good nights sleep even though it was interrupted by our first big thunderstorm since Asia. We turned over and went back to sleep, both saying thank goodness we are here, good holding and then slept through most of the rain and lightening. The morning dawned bright and sunny with Tuatara clean and dust free from mast top to deck, the last of the Red Sea dust gone.

We are now back in Finike Marina, we have been putting away ropes, cleaning, tying down loose things on deck, servicing the outboard, adding extra mooring lines all so that we can leave Tuatara for a few weeks and travel on land for a change. Tomorrow we fly to Sofia in Bulgaria to start a trip through the Croatia area, why Sofia? It's as good a place as any to start and the airfare from here to there was good when I booked. We plan to get to maybe Venice and then travel, not sure yet how, to Ireland and UK. The plan is to be back on Tuatara for Christmas, but if it gets too cold or wet we may come back sooner, we approach our land cruising like our boat cruising ... be adaptable plans can change for a variety of reasons.

Vessel Name: Tuatara
Vessel Make/Model: Alan Wright 51
Hailing Port: Opua NZ
Crew: Alan and Jean Ward

Sailing in the Pacific

Who: Alan and Jean Ward
Port: Opua NZ