Ah yes, it’s that time of year again, officially Autumn, the leaves change colours, the birds begin to migrate… and the weather doesn’t know the difference between its ass and a hole in the wall!! No my friends, I’m not there to complain about the weather, I’m actually enjoying it with all its beauty, quirks and wishy-washy-ness… just the way I like my women! They call it nature!
But the fore-mentioned nature doesn’t really give a hoot about Zoot Allures, but I do. A few weeks ago there was a spike in the weather forecast for rain and strong southerlies… something my mooring isn’t really setup for. So on a beautiful Sunday morning I tied up in an empty space in the port. By the end of the day I was built in! At 3am I was awaken by a rumble. I open my eyes and through the hatch I saw a horizontal lightening bolt associated with a cracking sound then boom…. let the games commence! By dawn the scenery was intense! Heavy downpours, howling wind, lots of thunder and lightening (and bears, oh my). Then it would stop, and then it would start again from a different direction, and start and stop and start… for pete’s sake! We where hit by at least four squalls. In other parts of Greece there were tornadoes and a lot of damage was done. Skopelos got slammed! Mama Mia!
The whole week was funky and I was down there everyday after work. Life at port is fun! I met alot of interesting people. Bernard, an Austrian dude with a purple steel boat was tied up with me and we had a good time. He picked up his 24yr old son and 80yr old dad from the airport that week and when the weather cleared they headed off to Turkey! I would have loved to join them (but alas, I’m stuck here with a mortgage and a job that doesn’t pay yada yada).
The next weekend when it was all over, my favorite Dutch couple, Ulbe and Carla showed up for a 3 week hang! And so did the wind (northerlies), so I moved out (to my mooring) and they moved in. As I’ve mentioned before, their ship is a 38ft wooded ketch, a Cutty Hunk, named Pyrrha (from the mythology of the beginning of the world(?)) Poor people… it was windy and cold, so cold that one evening I went down and we hung out in their salon which they declared was the first time!
Last Saturday the wind started to die down in the evening (I was stuck at work all day anyway) and we made plans to take off for 2 days (I got Monday off). 10am we were off! There was a bit of a north breeze left over, 16knts, and we had a nice sail over to the south bay of the “big” Petalious Island. While sailing I did “something” right, had my tiller tied off and was hands free for over an hour…. sweet!
And sweet it was! We pretty much had the bay to ourselves (with a few exceptions of hunters, dogs and another sailboat). We dinghy-ed ashore, had a nice walk on the beach and checked out a nice “baby” beach within a hole in the rocks. That evening Ulbe whipped up a mean spicy pot of spaghetti and I wore socks for the first time in 3 months (hey, it’s cold at night!)
The next morning we ventured around (ccw) the “big” Island to the “small” one via the passage that used to have a bridge a couple-of-hundred years ago. I crawled over first while shouting out the depth…. down (or up, however you look at it) to 1.7 meters! And then……
We were in awe of the colours of the water. Caribbeans… eat your heart out! We head out to a bay further north, had an excellent swim, checked out the beach, had a quick lunch and head on back home at 3pm (boo hoo!).
On arriving back after motorsailing in light winds, I found Ulbe and Carla with surprise! They caught a big ass fish! At least someone is doing some fishing. Me, I’ve got my hands tied being solo! Maybe next year (like I said last year… and the year before that). And on that note I would like to thank (and you should too) Carla for all these beautiful photos! There quite a few more. Without Carla this post would have been ….. a tad bland. A photo is worth a thousand word!! Thank you Carlaaa!!!
ps… I’m stuck at work for a 12 day stretch…. don’t hold your breathe for more of the above, dagnamit!