A very short post for you this week as we are going to meet our two granddaughters, daughter and son at the airport in a few minutes. They will be staying with us for the next two weeks so I’m going to take a bit of a break from blogging to enjoy every moment of Grampa time I can with them.
After leaving Turkey we checked into Greece in Rhodes, stayed the night and were off first thing in the morning heading for Athens with a stop or two to anchor for the night along the way.
However, that apparently wasn’t meant to be and so we diverted our course and are now on the small Greek island of Kalymnos which will make for a great spot to explore with our family. I will catch up with things in about two weeks so enjoy the rest from my ramblings while we enjoy some much needed Grampa and Gramma time.
Quite a momentous week for us as we finished all the critical remaining boat jobs and on Saturday, July 1st we checked out of Turkey. Seemed like an appropriate date being Canada Day and a day that at times we were not sure would ever arrive. Our whole experience the past year or so has difficult to capture in words as it felt like some surrealistic blended version of the song Hotel California (you can check in but you can never leave) and the movie Groundhog Day where time got stuck and every day was Ground Hog Day all over again.
However our dear friend Sherry came up with the perfect description when she sent us a link to this fabulous cartoon by Scott Johnston over on the Mathematics Facebook group that summarized it perfectly. As most of you would likely recall a Möbius strip is this truly fascinating shape created when you take a strip of paper, twist it 180 degrees and glue it together into a loop. As you may recall from high school math class a Möbius strip is a one sided surface with no boundaries. If for example you try to draw a line down the middle of the strip you will find that the line keeps going till it rejoins your start point. If it’s been awhile since you played with a Möbius strip do yourself and others around you a favor and create your own out of paper and have some fun with it or just watch this short video for one of the classic things to do with a Möbius strip.
Möbius strips showed up on the “first date” Christine and I had but I’ll leave that story for another time and just say that this shape has captured our relationship from the very beginning. So much so that I designed our matching wedding rings by playing around with some ideas based on a Möbius strip. With the help of my friend Ted, turned one of my designs into a 3D model, 3D printed the model in jeweler’s wax and then used this wax model to create a porcelain mold into which the White Gold could be poured. Capture a split raw cognac diamond inside the twisted top and Voila! Sherry knows this story well and so she just had to send us that fun cartoon as soon as she saw it and you can see why this so perfectly captures our life of late and from the very beginning. Thanks Sherry!
One of the bigger jobs we checked off this past week was the completion of our new Davit Arch and the launching of our Tender Möbli.
I’ve gone over the rigging in past posts but you can see how we lift Möbli up inside this Davit Arch and then let the Arch rotate off the Port side where we lower Möbli into the water. Time was short but I took him for a quick test run out of the harbour and back and little Möbli performed perfectly and then we loaded him back onboard Möbius.
Christine took some video of this maiden voyage but I’m not able to get it to upload for some reason so I’ll bring you more in future updates.
You may recall in last week’s update that I starting building the paravanes or “birds” or “fish” as they are commonly referred to, which we will use to reduce stabilise Möbius in rolly sea conditions on passage. The ones I’m building are based on the design you see here commonly used by Canadian commercial fishing boats that I’m familiar with from my many years in the Vancouver/Victoria area. These paravanes hang from the end of the long aluminium tube A-frames you may recall me rigging up a few weeks ago and they glide through the water about 6m/20ft below the surface. As the boat rolls the paravane on that side dives down and then resists when the boat tries to pull it up as the roll goes the other way. Very KISS and all mechanical so much lower maintenance and less likely to break down. Last week I got the plywood cut to shape, all the edges rounded over and two coats of white epoxy paint on them. This past week I got the aluminium plate cut and welded for the T-brackets that go through the plywood and create the lifting point for the dyneema line that each paravane is suspended by. The two plates underneath will form the tail fins to help keep the paravane tracking parallel to the boat. Drilled all the holes for the line attachment on top and the four holes for the through bolts to fasten these brackets to the plywood, and rounded over all the edges to help reduce drag and be safer to handle. Used my circular saw and some files to cut the slot into the plywood for the vertical 10mm plate to slide through. Routed out some V grooves for the welds to fit into and keep the AL plate flat against the plywood when bolted together. Used some marine adhesive to seal the T-brackets to the plywood and keep everything watertight. Unfortunately I only had Black Sikaflex on hand but I will be giving the paravanes at least one more coat of White epoxy so they will end up being all white, not that it matters to their operation. I didn’t have time to complete the last step to complete these which is to cut the vertical Tail Fin plates and bolt them to the vertical T bracket and the plywood. Once that is all done they should be easy to rig onto the ends of the Paravane A-frame poles and ready for their first test run. We are now underway so I’ll be doing my best to get them finished along the way and will be able to report back to you as to how they work.
Are We There Yet?
Christine has been watching weather for the past week and a great window was forecast to open up on Saturday morning so Friday afternoon she worked with the officials at Finike Marina and got all the paperwork filled out, stamped and signed and just like that we were finally officially checked out of Turkey and cleared to leave Saturday morning!
Could this really be true??!?
We awoke to ideal conditions on Saturday morning, no wind and flat seas and we just had one more job to look after before leaving. Up to now we have been running on the initial 2000 liters of diesel fuel we put into Möbius’ tanks just prior to launching over a year ago. Not the greatest timing to be buying fuel but we “only” paid US$1.61 per litre which is much less than anywhere in Europe so that helped a to reduce the sting of the current fuel prices a wee bit. Our six fuel tanks hold a total of 14,000 Litres/3,700 USG but we will wait till we get to Algiers where diesel is now 19 cents/litre to fill up completely so we just took on 4000 Litres/1057 USG which will be more than enough till we get to Algiers.
Look out Greece, Here we come!
And with that, we motored out of Finike marina for the LAST time, for sure we hope, and started making our way up the Turkish coast, again for the last time we hope. We are headed for Rhodes where we will officially check into Greece and then make our way over to Athens in time to meet up with our two Granddaughters and their parents. They will be with us for two weeks as we explore the Greek islands with them. As former sailors we are still working on making the transition to voyaging under power and the dramatic change in what makes for “ideal weather”. Somewhat the opposite of ideal sailing weather, we now seek out NO wind and flat seas and that’s pretty much what we had for our all day trip from Finike to Göcek. Not at all difficult to get used to mind you and our two crew members seem to agree, just very different from what we’ve been used to while sailing around the world the past few decades. Christine wanted to go back to the idyllic little bay at the top end of Göcek that she had found for us last month when we were up here which made for a longer day as we didn’t get the anchor down till about 20:30 but still in lots of light and we had our tracks from the last time. However the late afternoon sun comes pouring into the SkyBridge and so the Captain adapted with this very fashionable headdress made out of one of our Turkish towels and all was well. And all well worth it when you’re rewarded with a great sunset like this as we made our way to the anchorage. We will probably weigh anchor early in the morning to get some favorable motoring conditions to make the 50nm passage over to Rhodes and get checked into Greece there and start making our way West across the Aegean Sea to Athens. I’ll be able to update you on that passage in next week’s update when we are in Athens with our four new family crewmembers onboard so do stay tuned for that.
Thanks for taking the time to join us here again this week and we hope you’ll be back again for next week’s update. Don’t forget to leave your comments and questions in the “Join the Discussion” box below.
Also sending out lots our very best wishes to all our fellow Canadian and American friends and family as you celebrate your July 1st and 4th independence days in style. Christine has a bottle of bubbly in the fridge for us to celebrate our departure from Turkey and arrival in Greece tomorrow so we’ll toast you all then.