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Month: July 2019

Hiding from the Italians In Sivota – 13th to 22nd July 2019

Hiding from the Italians In Sivota – 13th to 22nd July 2019

034 - 2019 Summer - Sivota 000In 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.

Chris & Mary – 5th to 12th July 2019

Chris & Mary – 5th to 12th July 2019

033 - 2019 Summer - Sami 000Welcome back Chris and Mary, braving Hapatoni for their second year afloat in Greece. The Ryan Air flight from Stanstead landed on-time and after a 45-minute taxi ride, they joined us in  Sami at 21:30 for a beer on the back of the boat. We planned to show them three beautiful villages that they had not seen last year, in addition to our absolute favourite, Sivota … four different islands. The map shows our passage at the end of the week.

Kioni – 6th July028 - 2019 Summer - Kioni 001a

Pretty Kioni

028 - 2019 Summer - Kioni 006aIn our favourite bar on the first floor of El Plo, overlooking the bay. It’s always entertaining watching the charter boats messing up their mooring.

028 - 2019 Summer - Kioni 004aA pretty little pebble beach, a few kilometres outside Kioni and at the end of Hudson’s dog walk. The graveyard provides your dearly departed with a wonderful view of the ocean.

Kastos – 7th to 9th July029 - 2019 Summer - One House Bay 003a

Chris and Mary cooling off in One-House Bay en route to Kastos.029 - 2019 Summer - One House Bay 001a

Debs also taking a dip in One-House Bay. Bet you can’t guess how it got its name.029 - 2019 Summer - One House Bay 004a

Hudson thinks its all too much activity for this time of day030 - 2019 Summer - Kastos 001The windmill bar in Kastos

Iris Hotel in Nidri – 9th to 11th July

031 - 2019 Summer - Iris Hotel 004The only place to be when it is 38 degrees

031 - 2019 Summer - Iris Hotel 003Ready for a night out in party central, Nidri

031 - 2019 Summer - Iris Hotel 001aGyros for four in Nidri, no expense spared. Total bill, less than 20 euros for all of us (Including wine and beer).

031 - 2019 Summer - Iris Hotel 005The boys after a few beers.

Sivota – 11th July

028 - 2019 Summer - Kioni 002aMark serenading the neighbourhood. Funny how everyone seems to have deserted the pontoon !!

Sami – 12th July027 - 2019 Summer - Sami 001a

After a lovely week with great weather, visiting all our favourite places, we say goodbye to Chris and Mary.

On Route to Sami – 4th to 5th July 2019

On Route to Sami – 4th to 5th July 2019

027 - 2019 Summer - Sami 000Following the departure of Keith and Tracy on Wednesday evening, Mark and I retired to the bar for a quiet drink and to reflect on a fabulous week with our friends although our livers will need some rehab, but no rest for the wicked, we have 2-days to prepare for the arrival of Chris and Mary on Friday evening.

027 - 2019 Summer - Sami 002aThursday was an early start from the Iris pontoon heading south to Sivota for a day of cleaning and washing before we head to Sami at the bottom of Cephalonia on Friday 5th July ready for Chris and Mary’s arrival at 21:30.

Keith & Tracy in the Ionian – 26th June to 3rd July 2019

Keith & Tracy in the Ionian – 26th June to 3rd July 2019

As we will be re-visiting places that we have already described in great detail earlier in the blog, we have decided to present our friends Keith and Tracy visit as a picture album for a change.

Sivota 26th – 28th June

021 - 2019 Summer - Sivota 001aThe gang at the 12 Gods bar for Happy Hour. Keith has had his pain relief injection for his back, so we are all smiles.

Kastos 28th to 30th June

022 - 2019 Summer - Kastos 001a

The view from Alex’s Bar – a heavy night ahead.

022 - 2019 Summer - Kastos 003aMark helping out “boring” Mike (He wouldn’t stop talking about himself …. on and on and on and on), a  single-handed sailor, having trouble getting his ropes ashore to long-line.

022 - 2019 Summer - One House Bay 002aStopped for a swim at One-House Bay, named One-House bay as there is only one house and a little church on the Island.

Kioni 30th June

023 - 2019 Summer - Kioni 002 (1)a

The Quay at Kioni – its getting busier

019 - 2019 Summer - Kioni 001aThe boys cooling off

Kioni DC1 aCoffee break

023 - 2019 Summer - Kioni 002 (2)aHappy Birthday Tracy

Meganissi 1st July  

024 - 2019 Summer - Meganisi 001a

Hudson’s Taxi ride … I hope Tracy realises he can’t pay and will definitely do a runner.

025 - 2019 Summer - Stenon Meganisiou 001aStenon Beach – Breakfast stop on the way to Nidri

Iris Hotel pontoon Nidri 2nd – 3rd July

026 - 2019 Summer - Vlikho 001a

Splashing about in the pool, trying to keep cool

A fantastic week, Bye Bye Keith and Tracy


Eufemia – 24th to 26th June 2019

Eufemia – 24th to 26th June 2019

020 - 2019 Summer - Eufimia 000After a relaxing few days in Kioni, we left early at 7:45am travelling the 16 miles south to the windy village of Eufemia on the south east coast of Cephalonia. I was keen to get parked on the town quay early as the village is popular with the flotillas. We also wanted to avoid the strong afternoon breeze which blows down the valley off the mountains, making mooring a real challenge.

The harbour master is always very vocal, he directs you to your spot and likes to shout directions. He is not impressed if you do not follow his instructions … as the boat two doors down found out when he tried to re-set his anchor late in the afternoon, with 25 knots blowing on his beam, nearly taking out his next two neighbours anchors.

020 - 2019 Summer - Eufimia 004aFortunately, there was plenty of space on the town quay. We decided to get there the day before Keith and Tracy were due so that I could do the washing and we could clean the boat.  With our tasks completed, we took Hudson for a walk and retired to the boat for supper on-board and a quiet night, the calm before the storm.

020 - 2019 Summer - Eufimia 001aKeith and Tracy’s flight landed on-time and they were with us by 12:15, in-time for lunch. The afternoon passed quickly with lots of beer, shopping and a cooling swim, the weather was the opposite to yesterday, with no wind … very very hot. Unfortunately, Keith had done something to his back and was in severe pain, so, a visit to the doctor was needed. The doctor prescribed an anti-inflammatory/pain relief injection and suggested that, as we were not staying in Eufemia, Tracy should administer it for the next few days. Within an hour and with two mojitos downed, Keith started to feel better but not wanting to aggravate Keith’s condition, we adjusted our route to go to Sivota for a couple of days, avoiding the use of the dinghy while Keith recovered.

Kioni – 20th to 24th June 2019

Kioni – 20th to 24th June 2019

019 - 2019 Summer - Kioni 000We have a few days to pass before the arrival of our friends Keith and Tracy on the 25th June, they have just sold their own boat, a 50 ft Beneteau called Ammoniate.

The temperature is hot, in the mid-30’s and we have chosen to relax in Kioni, one of our favourite places. We arrived at about 10:30 and were able to get our preferred mooring spot at the end of the quay near the Calypso restaurant.  We spent the next four days relaxing and swimming (a lot) in order to cool down. There is also a very pleasant and much needed afternoon breeze which blows over the hills and down the bay.

019 - 2019 Summer - Kioni 006aSpit roast was being served in our favourite restaurant, so guess where we ate two out of the four nights that we stayed here?

019 - 2019 Summer - Kioni 002aBecause of the shape of the town quay, you always have a few crossed anchors, which is why we like to be at the end of the row. However, this time we had an obnoxious Rhodesian captain with two English passengers in a run-down boat, who decided to squeeze into a space two boats down. He rammed himself in with no regard to his neighbours’ boats. He then continued to moan for the rest of the day. Our English neighbour was concerned his anchor was not dug in, so whilst pulling his own anchor chain in (as is his right) he got a mouthful of abuse from the Rhodesian. I have never met such an unpleasant man.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERALater that day the Rhodesian had to reset his anchor and what a disaster. Firstly, with strong winds blowing on his beam he caught next doors chain under his rudder, the Rhodesian had no clue what to do so just stood around shouting, whilst their boat started heading towards our anchor chain. Mark saw that no one was doing anything, so he jumped into the water and pulled the chain from their rudder … only for their anchor to then hook on their neighbour’s chain. Again, Mark had to save the day, borrowing a neighbour’s dinghy and rowing over to set them free.  The hero of the day. Thankfully they took the hint that they were not welcome and disappeared over the horizon.

019 - 2019 Summer - Kioni 005aSunday 23rd June – Happy Birthday to my Dad.