On our way to Pylos in Greece
Today is the day that we will start our first 2-day overnighter together. Just the 2 of us! A bit exciting is underestimated, speaking for myself of course … But ready for it! Some figures first: done 5008 NM in total. Anchor release 09.00. Starting with full main and gennaker. 15 knots of wind. Perfect conditions! We sailed 38NM in 4,5 hours! But ….. at 14.30 wind 12 knots. A-symmetric spi. And slowly the wind started to die … 18.00 Dolphins dancing at the bow, while we were sailing 8.5 knots! 20.00 spi off, gennaker on, 1 motor. We had a bit of all. Used all sails and used both engines. It keeps you busy! But when motoring we could have a relaxed dinner as there was not much traffic around. After dinner, it was time to decide how to do the night shifts. We finally said that we would do it on our own intuition. If someone is tired the other picks up. Fine for me. So I offered to stay up and Robbert went to sleep on the couch in the saloon at around 22.00. There was no wind, we only had the main and 1 motor on. Very relaxed. No traffic around. At 20.00 we put the gennaker again. Around 02.00 AM Robbert took over. No wind – removed the gennaker. 1 Motor on. had set the alarm and timer but there was no traffic at all. I went to sleep in bed comfortably. Robbert has set all kind of alarms so he also could do some power naps now and then! Slowly the new day arrived. Beautiful sunsets and sunrises which I love so much.
We are already the next day now. 06.00 I sort of woke up and heard the winches rattling and it felt a bit uncomfortable. I heard some vague talking and when the motors started I went out of bed immediately! What is going on?!! OMG! Captain was running up and down because he caught a huge tuna! And could not get the fish inside alone. I took the net and tried to catch it but the net broke. It was such a big fish! But we did not have anything else? Than Robbert tried with the broken also net and yessssss!! Onboard! YOEHOE!! 20 minutes after Robbert threw out the fishing rods he caught this beautiful 6.8 kg blackfin tuna! What a catch! We filleted the tuna and I think we had around 4 kilos of fillets! Besides all the other provisioning we had on board … no more fishing for us! We ate the fish in all the possible ways you can eat tuna. Lovely! But at some point, it’s enough. Then you really want something else!
What to do when on passage?
That is different for everybody. For me personally, I feel not at ease to write or to do to something which I really have to concentrate on. Probably has to do with the movement of the boat. I want to get used to it. Makes blogging much easier when you can prepare posts and actually post them when having wifi! I do not like looking at movies or read a book or do some exercise. I rather play computer games. And I do that a lot … not very good. It makes you feel useless. I do some power naps to keep going. Do some cooking, do some cleaning. Making pictures of the sunset and sunrise. It can be quite boring at some point. I still have to find a good way to pass the days. Without only playing computer games! When we are crossing the Atlantic we are with 6 people. I guess it’s totally different than being just the 2 of us. We will learn eventually!
The second night of the passage
The wind stayed with us but we both felt sort of tired after 24 hours. We were going into our second night now. We are June 1 st now. The wind stayed with us and got even stronger. So Robbert had been very busy while I was asleep and he never woke me up. Is that true love or not?! Robbert put a reef and half genoa. 23 Knots of wind and it was pitch dark. So sleeping or tend to fall asleep was no option. Although a few very short power naps make the time pass a little bit better. That’s what he did … I woke up at 05.00 and took over. And finally, at 12.20 PM we had Land Ahoy! 25 Miles more to go! Pylos in sight! GREECE here we come! What a great feeling that we managed to do this together! WE DID IT! Robbert was still sleeping after his busy night shift and I was on watch! Exciting to arrive after 56 hours of sailing! The phone started to work again (perfect for checking the socials haha!!) and now it was a matter of hours to arrive in Greece. A new country! We anchored in the Bay of Pylos at 15.30. Quite some wind around but a nice spot. We opened a bottle and were soooo proud we did this! #sailingcouple #together #proud #enjoylife #achievement #grateful
First thing you have to do when entering a new country is certainly not drinking a bottle of bubbles but you have to check-in into the country. And as the rules changed as from this season in Greece we were curious to see how this would work. We had been trying to do it online but we failed several times and gave up. To be honest we are quite handy with a computer but this one we could not tackle!! Now we had to start the check-in process in Greece with all the new rules … ok, let’s go. To the office of the Coastguard. The lady in charge was very very friendly and helpful. But when we wanted to pay the taxes she started shaking her head. She even said herself it was a mess and it was not possible to check-in. Ok, now then? There are 2 taxes you have to pay: Depka (one time only) and Tepaie (monthly cruising tax). We tried to pay the Tapaie online but no way we managed. For the Depka you check in to the country, you have to go to the bank, pay the Depka (50 euro) and come back to the office with the receipt. But as it was Saturday, and the banks are closed, she could not check us in! So we paid 15 euros for whatever and she told us to check-in at Piraeus, where we would pick Peter Harken and Edit. She wrote us a letter stating that we did enter the country and wanted to check in but we could not because of the weekend. And that was it! Very friendly indeed, back to the boat. Having a drink and dinner. Guess what, Tuna time!! And an early night sleep! We made it! YEZZZZZ!
Pylos, also written as Pilos, is a small harbor town on the southwest coast of the Messinia region on the Peloponnese in Greece. Close to the prosperous Costa Navarino and the biotope of Gialova, very to close to one of the most beautiful beaches of the Peloponnese Voidakilia beach. Pylos is located at a distance of 52 kilometers, about an hour’s journey, from the city of Kalamata. Pylos is a picturesque fishing village in the Peloponnese The town is built amphitheatrically against the slopes of the mountains in a bowl-shaped bay. The marina is on the north side of Pylos, often well stocked with sailing boats and the necessary fishing boats. The Marina though is abandoned. The marina has no facilities and you do not have to pay anyhting to leave your boat there. I personally would not leave my boat there but ok. Along the boulevard and the old port you find the necessary terraces. The center has a square with a war memorial and terraces in the shade of the trees. Cozy in the evening. Boats sail from the harbor for excursions to, for example, Voidakilia beach. Pylos is located in the bay of Navarino. Almost completely closed off from the sea. The remains of the Turkish Niokastro castle are worth seeing as well as the long “Golden beach”, also called the sandy beach of Gialova. There is plenty to see and do in the Pylos area. Walking and birdwatching at the Aga Osman lagoon, about six kilometers north of the holiday destination. Or visit the old Palace of Nestor.
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