Sunday, 7 July 2013

Two dinners, one boat, lots of ginger tea and the beginning of the advanture

Two/three weeks in and I finally get the chance to write a little bit. I’ve just been far too occupied absorbing sunshine and observing beautiful views. Yes, yes, it is mostly blissful, but don’t feel too jealous as the real reason I have time to write now is because I have a ridiculous heat rash that is 100% minging. I’m not allowed in the sun or the sea. Cool.
We set off for Greece to join Pete’s parents on their boat on an 11pm flight that arrived in the ghetto of Athens at 4am. A bonus was that we received an inflight meal that we weren’t expecting, meaning we ate two dinners: one at dinnertime and one as a post-midnight feast. Thank you Aegean Airlines! However, the lack of sleep made us wobbly and disorientated at dawn whist trying to search for our ferry transfer to the small island of Hydra.

Adding to the wobbliness, it was the first time I’d met the parents and set foot on a proper boat with sails and stuff. Obviously we were warmly welcomed and all was fine until a massive storm hit the port… Yep. A stupid massive storm decided to greet us too, which meant splish splosh wavy rocky loveliness to add to the sleep deprivation. Cue seasickness! Ugh.

Meanwhile, Pete was in his element and continued to be throughout our time on the Carpe Diem of Ipswich: installing a new anchor light and clambering up the mast, unhooking tangled anchors, swimming out to attach ropes to things etc. Saving the day most days. Mostly I drank ginger tea and cuddled the dogs - yes, two Labradors live on the boat, and so does a cat.

We stayed in Poros anchoring in the tranquil Russia bay and then sailed to Methena with its sulphur infused sea. Eggy but good for arthritis and ailments, apparently.

As the first day of the advanture loomed we were fully settled into boat life and it was a shame to leave. We had a long bus journey ahead to take us to Kalamata where the infamous van was chillin’.

Our first camp stop was at Navarino beach just outside of Pilos. A long, yellow, fine-sanded beach peeped through the trees 5m from our pitch. As we looked along the bay we found we were the only ones on it! The sea was calm, blue and very very cold. On numerous occasions we found ourselves the only ones bobbing about – or in Pete’s case, splashing and back-flipping about.
Bummer, we thought. This is too beautiful; we’ve peaked too early.

Turns out we did!


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