We left Sami harbour, waved to Stavros and sailed north. We decided to stop off in Kala Limeni; a little bay with a farmstead of goats, cows, sheep and olive trees; since the weather was increasingly settled and it is a beautiful bay. The tinkling of the cows bells offers an interesting accompaniment to the scenery. This also happens to be the site of one of my most lucrative fishing sessions a couple of years ago!
We had two glorious days there, but no fish! Then drove a little further north to Fiscardo. Here we ‘parked’ with long lines to the north shore.
This process involves me having to get into the dinghy and drive to the shore. I have to jump out of the dinghy on to sharp rocks covered with sea urchins and attach a line to a useful rock (or ring, if we are lucky) using a chain and fireman’s hose to prevent chafe. I have to ensure that I don’t let go of the dinghy in all of this as that would be most distressing. I hop back into the dinghy and push away from the sharp rocks. I then coil said line in the bottom of the dinghy so that it pays out over the front of the dinghy without snagging on anything. Gradually, I reverse back to the boat whilst Ian simultaneously reverses Linea and lets out the anchor and chain. The idea being that we meet at the point just before I run out of line!
He then takes the line on to a winch and pulls us back so that the anchor chain becomes taut and the line is holding us in position and we can’t swing.
I find it quite challenging although I am getting much better. It is fairly nerve racking for me especially if it happens to be windy and I have to cope with painter, line, knot-tying, dinghy, outboard motor, gears and steering. Good job I can walk and chew gum at the same time. It’s a bit like tapping your head and rubbing your tummy at the same time – only more stressful.
On our second day in Fiscardo, we enjoyed a morning of watching charter yachts conducting anchor knitting as they left their moorings.
Ian went to the assistance of a few who were struggling but I finally managed to persuade him that all would be well without him. We left the boat and set out to complete one of the walking routes from Fiscardo.
We decided to do the one called Battery. It is a 10km hike through forests and was absolutely stunning.
I popped into a fishing tackle shop on the way back to the boat and the owner assured me that the lure I was about to buy for E20 would be the BEST for catching tuna. I bought it! Now we have invested in a new BBQ to cook the fish, a gaff hook to land the fish, a filleting knife to prep the fish, secateurs to cut the fins off the fish, gardening gloves to haul in the line and a very expensive lure.
Total catch – a big fat ZERO.
Back at the boat we had a cooling swim, a well-deserved beer and a curry. Bliss!
Today, we have sailed nicely to the North east across the bay towards Meganisi and Levkas. We decided to investigate a huge enclosed bay called Vliko on the east side of Levkas. There is an enormous anchorage where some boats safely spend the winter. This would be perfect for us as the forecast is for winds up to 28kts from the Southeast tonight.
Unforthunately we dragged our anchor at about 2200h so things were a little frantic til we had reset it.
Next day we left for anchorage on the east side of Meganisi but it didn’t look very inviting so we doubled back and anchored in Kalo Elia, which was very pretty.
We were up and out early (due to some noisy strimming ashore) and headed round to Spartakhori on the north coast of Meganissi. We found a spot bows to the south quay. We enjoyed a walk up to the Chora later in the afternoon with friends Lars and Anna on Odin (from MDR) and after that we had supper at the restaurant near the boat, by way of ‘payment’. it was delicious.
THe following day, trawling the tuna lure again (NO FISH), we arrived in Vathi on Ithaca and anchored at the head of the bay. It is delightful and colourful place with noticeably more noise than other anchorages but it is still a very pleasant and sheltered spot.
Over the next couple of days the plan is to head gradually south to Zakinthos from where I am flying home for a week or so to sort out the house and tenants.
When I return Keira will join us for a couple of weeks. Then in July, Erin and Josh will be with us too.
The faaaaamily will be together again.