In anticipation of the mass arrival of the Italians, usually from mid-July till the third week of August, we pre-booked a space on the Italian pontoon in Sivota – Yes, I know, it makes no sense … but actually it does. We decided to stay for 9 days and agreed a discount price as we are now regulars. It is well worth paying to be on a lazy line at this time of year, away from all the crossed and pulled up anchor shenanigans and protected from any weather issues, with power and water included – no stress, hurrah.
It also gave us the opportunity to start preparing the boat for the end of our season, washing ropes, sails and everything down below. We could get it done at our own pace as we still had 2 weeks to go.
Early in the afternoon on Sunday 14th July, the weather (as per forecast) was gusting to 36 knots from the NE, causing the Sivota washing machine effect in the anchorage in the centre of the bay. Anchors pulled up and there was the usual chaos as boats drifted around out of control.
The town quay outside Liotrivi’s can be equally chaotic, as the wind hits the boats side on. One particular French boat entertained us for two hours as his anchor was obviously not dug in and he refused to go out and reset it before the wind started howling across his beam. Instead he opted for a spiders web of ropes attached to the boat next to him, who also had a similar spiders web attached to our pontoon and to the quay – what a mess. I just hope they don’t have to leave in a hurry. Although these restraints helped, they did not stop the Frenchman from banging his stern against the quay. An attempt to reset his anchor with the wind at its peak strength resulted in the inevitable, yet another limp and useless anchor.
The Frenchman despaired and obviously decided “out of sight out of mind”, so he went for a beer and turned his back on his boat and the mess on the quay.
The lesson is simple, if your anchor is not set, reset it and make sure it is well dug in and do it before the wind gets too strong.
By 4:00 pm the wind had died down, so entertainment over, we headed off to Yannis for an evening drink before dinner back on board.
The next few days the weather was a lot cooler and a bit overcast with rain threatening, at least the winds had calmed. Hudson was loving the new temperature and it was nice not getting out of the shower and dripping with sweat before you were even dressed.
The strong winds had shown our pontoon’s owners a potential issue, so, with the wind calm once more, they attached an extra heavy-duty chain to the end of the pontoon.
The rain finally arrived on Monday, keeping everyone either below decks or in one of the bars. It was a relief because it was cooler and it cleared the muggy air. The net result was Sivota was a lot quieter, the family Bar which was rammed on the previous night with the Wimbledon finals, was almost empty on the Monday.
Nine days passed very quickly and comfortably. Mark and I alternate morning dog walks and he is sanding and varnishing his woodwork, keeping him busy. Mark is also working on his book, which is nearly finished. I am washing up anything not in use and flat packing it away, but we still have plenty of time for our leisure activities.
We have probably stayed in Sivota a bit too long as we are getting a bit ratty with each other and even a little bored, so we left Sivota on Monday 22nd July and headed north to the Iris pontoon in Nidri, arriving at 11am. We were too early, as the Sailing holiday flotilla had not left yet, so we anchored just off the pontoon and waited until Effie (The wife of the owner, Christo) gave us the all clear to moor up at 1pm.