Cruising donkeys

Joined April 2017Living in: Guernsey
  • Day29

    Damp but underway in Meganissi

    Today in Greece ⋅ ⛅ 15 °C

    We got the fuel in Preveza it was 35c a litre cheaper than at Lefkas Marina, then next day after buying some olive oil, olives and honey from the back of a scooter we headed back south to the turning bridge on the Lefkas Canal. We also bought a Minions rug for the wheelhouse floor.
    We were a bit early at the bridge so while waiting we had a tea but.... the water stopped..... John decided to check the pump. Arghh all the water 💦 from the fresh water tanks, about 700litres because we had filled up at the boat yard, was now in the bilges!!
    The water had just reached the bottom of the prop shaft, bilge pump on, and level dropping rapidly. By the time we had got through the bridge and to the anchorage just off the town quay the bilges were empty and John had identified the cause of the problem. We had very kindly been given a giant round buoy and we had deflated it and stowed it in the engine room by the water pump, without realising John had knocked one the pipes and then as we were coming across to the bridge the rock and roll of the sea had dislodged it completely. We know it was OK when we left Preveza as John had checked the engine room as he does before each voyage. He has decided to double jubilee clip the pipe now.
    So first job was to empty all the gear out of the bilges to dry it all out and see what could be saved and what had to be trashed We were lucky a lot of the gear was no worse off for a dunking, but we had to throw all the cardboard boxes 📦 stuff was in, we also disposed of some things that had been left by previous owner that were parts and spares for things that John had replaced.
    We were half way through the job when Nick and Gemma called us over for a drink, and we discovered that it was Gemma’s birthday 🎂 and that they had got engaged that morning, Ziggy was ring bearer. So we had a Buck’s Fizz to celebrate 🎉.
    Next morning we refilled the fresh water tanks, we had to pay this time, and then headed south to Meganissi where we anchored in Abelike bay.
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  • Day26

    Floating again !!

    April 19 in Greece ⋅ ☀️ 17 °C

    Well it took a while but we are back on the water. The boat was all ready to go except for the new transducer for the the depth sounder, a week after lifting but it took over 2.5 weeks for the transducer to arrive. I think this was partly my fault in the way that I had asked the remitter to address the package but also partly Greek bloody paperwork. We ordered the transducer on 1/4, it took only 36 hours to travel from Guernsey to Athens but then spent 3 days waiting to be processed before DHL failed to contact us, they used incorrect email address, we called them. We then started the painful process of complying with Greek paperwork, 3 customs invoices, a payment to Guernsey for goods not yet received, a further payment to DHL for assisting with customs clearance and finally at 3:00 on wed 17/4 it arrived. It took 10 minutes to fit but no lift space until Friday morning. Thursday we gave the dinghy outboard a blast and took ourselves across to Preveza to check out fuel options and space on the town quay and met some more expat locals, Dave and the dog that had adopted him for the winter, Frank from NY and his daughter, Steve on a self built stainless steel 30ft yacht and Mary a Polish/Canadian whose been in Greece for 15 years now whose waiting for crew to help with the pre season maintenance.
    It was a relief this morning to find that the depth sounder was fully operational, don’t want to contemplate how we would have felt had it still not worked. There is a festive feel in Preveza as it’s Christian Good Friday today even though the majority of Greeks will be celebrating next weekend.
    Fuel and then were off
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  • Day21

    Cycle to Vonitsa

    April 14 in Greece ⋅ 🌧 15 °C

    Nice day today so after John has applied another coat of paint to the inside of the old gas locker than he had cleaned a few days ago, I managed to persuade him that we should go for a bike ride. Not too many directional choices from here so we headed North past the end of the runway at Aktio Airport and were then going to decide whether to go left or right, Vonitsa or Agios Nickolas. I am secretly hoping that we can get to Vonitsa as not sure there is even a cafe in Nickolas.
    At the end of the runway we find the unfinished A52 motorway and are directed onto it for a short stretch before being turned off to the existing roads but as the motorway seems to be going in the right direction we decide to stay onboard as we were the only traffic and there were no work vehicles either.
    We have a beautifully smooth ride 11km to the Vonitsa turn off and a delicious lunch at one of the cafes before riding back along the lonely the motorway. Great day out.
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  • Day18

    Greek bureaucracy

    April 11 in Greece ⋅ 🌧 18 °C

    Well sadly we are still here in the yard at Preveza waiting to receive the transducer that will fill the 2inch hole we currently have in the bottom of the boat. You really wouldn’t believe what a palaver it’s been, the transducer took I think it was 36-48 hours to get to Athens then three days of doing nothing we then contact DHL to enquire about the problem and they say they have been trying to contact us as apparently we have the wrong address on the parcel, by the way we have no missed called or emails obviously. We get sender to send revised customs invoice with amended address. No news call them again invoice has to have a number, sender sends another amended customs invoice with a number, through DHL Guernsey as cant be forwarded by us apparently. Next hoop, next day, we have to send proof of payment, I try to explain that we wouldn’t normally pay for goods until we receive the goods but to no avail, sender sends us invoice and we pay and send confirmation to DHL Athens. Next day I call again and they want a letter from sender saying exactly what is printed on the customs invoice, i loose it, why another thing that says the same. They should as we didn’t hear back now be clearing the parcel, but who knows?
    Rant over. We have been doing some useful things with our additional dry time, john managed to stop an irritating leak we had on one of the portholes, wiped the rust streaks and washed exterior and has now replaced all the fender ropes. I have done more internal sanding and varnishing finally finishing all the portholes, and some external touch ups, not as much as I would have liked as still scattered showers every other day.
    I have also finally finished baby Sophia’s cardigan and one bootie other is ongoing and have posted Sam and Nathan’s baby sleeping bag to them, I am hoping it’s a boy, well not really there just wasn’t as much colour choice as i would have liked so it’s in pale grey, pale blue and turquoise.
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  • Day13

    Boat maintenance done!

    April 6 in Greece ⋅ ⛅ 21 °C

    Hurray we have finished the antifouling, and received the completed insurance survey. Survey was great just need to replace one of the rollers on the anchor bow roller, we had noticed but then forgot about it as you do while in a marina using their slime lines. Boat bottom is darker than before as now covered with Seajet 33 mid blue previously it was Micron International blue. Looking good even if we say so ourselves, also liking the new red bar on the rocha anchor, done to enabling more accurate estimations of where it is once released.
    Will be back in the water as soon as the sounder transducer arrives, we know it arrived in Athens Wednesday evening but no one knows how long it will take to clear Greek Customs fingers crossed 🤞 not much longer.
    We have booked our flights home to a Guernsey for the summer, we will be there 9/7-9/9 so if anyone would like us to house/pet sit please let me know as we currently of no fixed abode for those summer months.
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  • Day6

    Ionion Marina Yard in Aktio

    March 30 in Greece ⋅ 🌬 17 °C

    The boat was lifted yesterday a little late due to a scheduled power out but all chucked by 13:00, nice and close to power and water but sadly the toilet block next to us is out of action as they are installing new water tanks. The view across the fields and the Preveza Gulf is beautiful. Boats bottom was a lot dirtier than last year but we, well I have now scrapped and sanded it down, popped the bubbles and scrapped out wet bits and John has wire brushed back to steel where needed so almost ready for primer. Having a break now that we have finished the smurf jobs.
    Only problem at the moment is that even though we have now properly cleaned the transducer, the downward facing sensor, for the depth sounder we are still not getting a reading, it ticks and the receiving screen appears to function OK just no depth. John is hoping to hear from Robin shortly.
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  • Day1

    Cruising again the start of the return

    March 25 in Greece ⋅ ☀️ 17 °C

    We had a great last night in Levkas Marina there was even a party in our honour, well almost, it was both for the marina leavers and to celebrate the owners of the Porto Cafe having managed it for 5 Years. They provided nibbles a party cake and flowers for their staff.
    John was awarded a Golden Compass award for his carpentry skills having saved the New Years Eve party by constructing a wind proof surround for the outer area. Other awards were for eco warrior, cultural bridging, community spirit and a special one for Shadow the first marina baby 👶. It was a great night with Ugly Potatoes providing great live music and vocals.
    We left the Marina today, Greek Independence Day and headed south to Nidri just to check that all was well. We did encounter a small problem as we were preparing to leave, it looks like while tidying up some wiring and adding extra sockets John may have inadvertently removed the aerial cable for the small stand alone GPS unit!
    Tomorrow we plan to return to Lefkada town and anchor off for a night, this means I can go to knit and natter one last time before going to Preveza on Wednesday ready for a lift out on Friday at Ionian Boat Marina when we will start the re antifouling process.
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  • Day704

    Agias Nikitas

    March 20 in Greece ⋅ ☁️ 16 °C

    With John having Man flu this week, it was just me and Pete on the cycle up to Tsoukalades and then down to Agias Nikitas on the west coast, yet more stunning views, Lefkada island has some hidden treasures. On the way back we saw a wheelie bin that was being staked out by the local cats, and stopped for a great coffee in Tsoukalades at the top of the hill. Pete generously bought some of TTs (tall Tony’s) favourite cakes so we delivered them on the way back and at his flat I found some freesias, smelt them first obviously then saw them they remind me of Guernsey so much.
    This week was also a good one for me in the quiz our team won, the credit goes largely to Steve and Mags but I do remember getting one answer correct, how many points is the letter L worth in scrabble! Well done me.
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  • Day699

    Cycling to Karya

    March 15 in Greece ⋅ 🌬 12 °C

    We had a great morning out yesterday when Pete and Irene took us on a very scenic and little travelled route up to Karya in the centre of Lefkada island. The uphill section took a very long time and at each corner Pete assured us we had done the worst bit and that we were nearly there only for us to turn the corner and it appear even steeper. Pete used to be in advertising, you can tell. A restorative coffee and cake in Lazarata meant we made it to Karya OK this section was mostly flat then downhill towards Nidri with gorgeous views across to Megannisi, before the flat costal section back to Lefkada.Read more

  • Day694

    Lefkada Carnival

    March 10 in Greece ⋅ ☀️ 17 °C

    This weekend was carnival weekend on the island with Nidri celebrating on Saturday night and Lefkada town celebrating Sunday night, some serious effort went into floats, costumes, routines etc well done everyone we had a great time at both evenings watching the festivities even if our ears are still a little soreRead more

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