|Daniel with the tools of his trade!|
From Kalymnos we had a great sail north stopping overnight in Emborious, one of the small towns bordering Vorio Bay, a really spectacular, large, bay on the west coast of Kalymnos.
|Skipper deserting ship|
After berthing and paying our dues we set off for a recce of the town of Lakki, something which takes about 10 minutes at most! It probably qualifies as the ugliest Greek town I have seen, brutal fascist era Italian architecture and some of it is being restored at the EU's expense what's more (one building costing €2.8m)! One point of interest was when we stumbled upon a memorial, bearing a White Ensign, commemorating the sinking of the destroyer HMS INTREPID during the battle for the liberation of Leros in WWII.
Amazing what you discover by chance. Luckily, after rejecting two dining establishments as too touristy, we found a good local restaurant and booked our table for the evening. We chose well and if I could type in Greek on this computer I would give you the name, however, if you find Mike's Bakery it is next door (just in land) and Mike also does delicious bread and cakes! Whilst we were enjoying our meal we were joined by two other crews from the marina, both had been advised that this was the best restaurant in town. After dinner we stopped of for a quick final nightcap in a local bar; it proved not to be so quick and probably accounted for a large part of the hangover we both suffered the next morning!
Daniel was due to depart on the Flying Dolphin (hydrofoil) at 1030 Tuesday morning and by good fortune we decided to buy his ticket the evening before otherwise we would never have found out that the fast ferries do not leave from the ferry port in Lakki, they leave from Ag Marina, which is the other side of the island and the alternate car ferry port in the event of Lakki being untenable due to weather. Only a short taxi ride but how are you supposed to know? The timetable simply says Leros!
|Ariving in Ormos Kryphos|
In the past two weeks I had become increasingly concerned about the lack of battery capacity. From fully charged a 30Ah discharge saw the voltage down at 11.2V and the batteries were supposed to be 324Ah capacity! After a bit of research and head scratching I decided the batteries were all but life expired despite being only 4 years old and made by Vetus; supposedly good batteries. I therefore set about sourcing a set of new batteries. The best price and fastest availability was offered by Leros Boatyard (part of Lakki Marina but at the north of the island) who quoted €125 per battery and delivery Thursday or Friday. On this basis I decided to stay in Leros, but not at the marina, and so after sitting out some strong westerly winds on Tuesday night I slipped and set off to an anchorage on the east side of the island to wait for delivery. The first night was spent anchored in Ornos Kryphos a very small cove but with the clearest water of the season so far. My intention initially had been to anchor there for lunch but it proved so tranquil and the holding so good that I opted to stay for the night as well. Next day I moved up to Ornos Plakoudi, 2 miles from the boatyard ready to go to collect my new batteries when they called.
They didn't! I called them, just before closing time, to discover that the batteries had not arrived but that they would be “here Friday for sure”. Friday came ….. and went, another phone call, no batteries but they were “on their way”. Plakoudi is a very pleasant anchorage but.....
|The boatyard at Ornos Partheni|
Saturday morning I phoned again, they were on the island but not yet at the yard. On this basis I moved round to Ormos Partheni, the boatyards location, and anchored there to wait..... At 1400 the boat occupying the only alongside berth in the whole yard departed and so I quickly dropped Kurukulla alongside and went in search of my batteries. “Please take a seat, they will be here shortly!”. This time he was good to his word, they arrived in a van 20 minutes, and a complementary iced coffee, later. Interestingly I was not the only customer suffering with Vetus batteries that had died young, another customer had had to replace their set after only 3 years! (They should last 5 at least). The new ones are Exide and cost €125 per battery as opposed to the €235 I paid for Vetus ones in Ibiza in 2008. We will see how long they last, they can't be worse! It took 30 minutes to install them and the yard offered free disposal of the old batteries so by 1600 I was out on one of their moorings where I spent the night before departing for Mykonos at 0500 next morning.
|Patmos in the morning calm|
|Super Paradise at exodus time....|
The departure was literally at first light with a light southerly breeze. This sadly did not last long and by 0630 I was motoring along at 6 kts in an oily calm, not great but it could be worse! Just a few fishing boats and a Saga cruise ship for company. By 1000 things were looking up and Kurukulla was doing 6.5kts under full sail in exactly the right direction. From here on it was occasional short bursts of engine, when the wind died and/or my patience ran out, but mostly it was a close reach all the way to Mykonos. We arrived at 1700, anchored in the western corner of Super Paradise, (a misnomer if ever there is one, it is neither super nor paradise but the best anchorage on the south coast in a south westerly!), in time for a swim, a snooze, early supper and bed; that was once the disco had shut down!