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Greek Sailing Odyssey Day 19: Anafi - Santorini

Today was a big day.  We set course for the legendary Samtorini, also known as Thira.  Both the sea and the wind continued to be rough and virtually the entire journey was against the wind. Lisa and Maurizio steered the whole way voluntarily, they knew we were on treacherous grounds (sea, really).  We had lots of what we began to call "salty showers" from waves breaking on board for the first half of the trip, luckily Neptune showed a bit more mercy in the second half of the journey.  We originally intended to moor in the harbour on the southern tip of Santorini, but the wind was too strong for us to find good shelter there and the harbour was overcrowded anyway.  So, instead we decided to go a bit further west, find a sheltered bay, swim and wait for the wind to calm down and then assess our options.  We shall see what happens!

Greek Sailing Odyssey Day 18: Astypalaia - Anafi

I woke up at 9am and noticed--probably at least in part due to being still half-asleep--that the sea in this harbour sounded like a river: waves were very small and frequent and hit the pier almost constantly, giving me an illusion that there was a stream nearby.  Once I pondered that thought for a bit more, I had a quick breakfast and grabbed a book as Maurizio and Lisa went for a walk around Astypalaia.  We left at about midday and set course to Anafi.  The wind was strong for most of the journey and the sea was quite rough.  The good news was that we kept on making very good progress, the high of the day was 9.7kn under my stewardship.  My dad came at a close second with 9.3 kn. It seems our family has high wind in favour!

Greek Sailing Odyssey Day 17: Kalimnos - Astypalaia

I woke up at 7:30 just as I heard the roar of the boat's engine--it was time to move.  I rushed on board to help with the fenders and maneuvering and we were soon out of the port.  Sadly, our enthusiasm was not matched by that of the wind; soon after leaving the port we hit a patch of no wind and so we had to turn the engine on for a few more miles to get us through to an area with more wind.  As a side note--we rarely ever used our engine during navigation.  Dull as it was at times to be stuck with no or little wind in the middle of the journey, we usually weathered it and slowly made our way to an area with more wind--we only ever really used the engine for the absolute final approach to ports as the engine made the ship more easier to maneuver.  But today was an exception, we really had to make progress and could not have afforded to waste precious hours standing still.  

Will Dierenfield, as dear a friend as one can have, just launched his own blog.  Knowing him the way I do, he will come up with stories filled to the brim with wit, humour and food for thought.  He's the top of the tops, but just getting started, so spread the word and read, read, read.

Greek Sailing Odyssey Day 16: Leros - Kalimnos

Today was yet another day when me and my dad woke up early to go sightseeing before we sail off--this time our destination was the Platanos castle.  We caught the 7:43 bus, which was on time!  Amusingly, the bus driver kept on honking throughout the whole trip, frequently but irregularly enough to catch you off-guard and make you yank instinctively each time.  You see, there are many reasons to honk in Greece: a vehicular 'hello' to a car--any car--passing you in the opposite direction, a warning to pedestrians, or an alert to general traffic when the bus was approaching a turn; the streets were often quite narrow and cars could easily crash into the bus if they didn't know it was right around the corner.  Noble and sociable as the reasons were, the constant fanfare from the bus must have been greatly enjoyed by anybody who lived by the street at such wee hours of the day.