Travels with S/Y Thetis

Thetis only

Thetis 2017: Emborios to Patmos

This web page contains the logs of the second leg from a cruise in the East Aegean from Emborios in Kalynos to Livadhi tou Geranou in Patmos. This leg consistes of a 10 day singlehanded sailing trip that I took with S/Y Thetis. On the way there were stops in: Lakki (Leros), Papandria (Lipsi), Diakofti, Skala, and Agrio Livadhi (all in Patmos).

Route from Samos to Kalymnos
Route from Kalymnos

Friday August 4, 2017, Day 11

My plan for today was to go to Lakki, in Leros and get some supplies. I received an SMS from Manolis Kouvaritakis. He is still in Samos where there is a very strong wind. He will not come S today but maybe he will come tomorrow. I prepared for departure.

By 0800 the dinghy was up and we were ready to go. I cast off the mooring at 0811. There was, all the way, spray and a head wind, 15 - 20 knots from the NNE, and large seas. At least I did run the water-maker. But after rounding the entrance to Lakki the sea was calm. After 8.8 M we arrived in Lakki (Λακκί), Leros (Λέρος) [37° 07.8' N 026° 51.1' E] at 0955. I anchored in 6 m depth with 30 m of chain. It was hot. I lowered the dinghy and jumped in the water to cool off. I put up the tent. Then I got ready to go shopping.

I got fruits, fresh bread, cold cuts, meat for a pot roast, etc. The afternoon was quiet. I cleaned the shower drain that looked dirty. Then I started cooking the roast in lemon juice and some red wine. I peeled and sliced some potatoes to go with the roast. After that I went ashore and checked the Agmar Marine marina. I sat down in a café and had an ouzo.

Back on board I finished the cooking. I left the tent on to shield the boat from the the street lights. When the roast was done I fried the potatoes. Along with the roast I drank Rubi de Noir Calliga red wine. After dinner I indulged my self and went ashore again and had some ice cream. It was a lovely night despite the loud 2-wheel and 4-wheel vehicles driven by young people who do not believe in mufflers. I suppose isolated here in the island this is their way to display their masculinity.

Saturday August 5, 2017, Day 12

This is the 39th birthday of my younger daughter Corinna. I have to face it that my little girl is now a woman and a matron.

Yesterday I had made arrangements to meet today Manolis Kouvaritakis with his S/Y Daphne, we are to meet in Papandria in Lipsi. I made preparations for departure.

By 0730 the anchor was up and we were under way. The wind was gusty, 8 - 16 knots from the N, a head wind. Once again the use of sails was out. We motored running the water-maker. 1:15 hours later the water tanks were full. Instead of going directly to Lipsi I turned east and rounded the island of Archangelos. There were about 19 S/Y there and a large cruiser. After rounding the island I set, via the GPS/Chart Plotter, the autopilot to the Autotrack mode. Everything worked flawlessly. While under way between Archangelos and Lipsi I saw a dark flappy shape. I thought that it might had been a small whale but after looking at it with the binoculars I saw that it was a pair of canoeists!

Thetis arrived in Papandria (Παπανδριά), Lipsi (Λειψοί) [37° 16.8' N 026° 46.2' E] at 1005 and anchored in 4 m depth with 25 chain scope. We had come 14 M.

While waiting for Manolis to arrive I washed the cockpit and the dinghy. I then tried a totally new arrangement for the lazy jacks to prevent them from banking on the mast by tying then on the boom. After many years I hope that this is a better solution to keep down the noise. We will see.

S/Y Daphne with Manolis arrived around 1200. He anchored near Thetis. After snorkeling to check his anchor he swam over and we had a light lunch. While eating we brought each other up to date. He told me that our friend Yiorgos Haritakis is with his boat S/Y Rita ΙΙΙ in Patmos.

In the evening I removed the tent and the cockpit table etc. I then went over with the dinghy and picked up Manolis. We left the dinghy at the small quay in Katsadia and walked to the harbor. We sat in Nick’s and Louli’s and had ouzo, their perfectly grilled octopus, and other tasty things. While eating it started to drizzle. This is very rare for this time of the year.

I sent a message to my classmate Andreas Daveronas who had earlier informed that he is in Rhodes. Manolis and I left the decision on what we will be doing tomorrow: that is whether we will stay here or move to Patmos. If we do go to Patmos I may have to return with Thetis to meet Andreas. We will see. By the time we walked back and returned to our boats it was past 10:30.

Sunday August 6, 2017, Day 13

I woke up at 4:30 drenched in sweat so I moved and slept the rest of the night in the cockpit.

Both boats stayed in Papandria. I cut to the size of a window a cloth screen and attached it with velcro and contact cement to the right cabin port. I hope that this will keep the mosquitoes away from my cabin.

It was a very hot day and we swam a lot. Although the wind was weak the scheme with the lazy jacks seemed to work and there was no banging.

I had lunch with Manolis in S/Y Daphne. Later in the afternoon the breeze changed direction now coming from the SSW and Thetis drifted close to the nearby rocks, but still in 3.7 m depth. So, I re-anchored, exactly where I usually do here and was prevented by another boat from doing so yesterday. I now anchored in 4.7 m depth and let out again 30 m of chain. I also deployed the anchor buoy.

Dinner was served on Thetis. I heated the pot roast and made rice pilaf. Manolis brought a salad. It was a very pleasant and peaceful night, although with the eating and conversation, washing the dishes etc., by the time I went to bed it was past 11:30.

Monday August 7, 2017, Day 14

I slept very well. It was not so hot as last night. It was past 6:30 when I got up. The plan for today was to sail to Diakofti in Patmos and link with Yiorgos Haritakis with S/Y Rita. I first met Yiorgos and Manolis in Marathi few years ago and we all had met again in Leros.

I prepared for departure. I opened the bimini, raised the dinghy, etc. Thetis departed at 0847 and Daphne followed. There was hardly any wind, less then 10 knots from the WNW. It was motoring all the way and running the water-maker. But I made a mistake and did not switched the water-maker valve from the discharge to the sea to the tanks. I realized this after 1 hr went by. But at any rate in ½ hour the tanks were filled.

We arrived at 1048 but I was not sure where to anchor. I tried anchoring in-front of Tragonisi but was not pleased as it was too deep. Daphne was hovering. I put up the tent and lowered the dinghy. I then raised the anchor and moved closer to Diakofti (Διακόφτι). Yiorgos came to us with his dinghy. We both anchored but again missed the sandy patch that Yiorgos had indicated. I went over to Daphne and helped Manolis to anchor on the patch with Yiorgos Haritakis pointing the spot. We then repeated the process with Thetis anchoring [37° 17.7' N 026° 33.7' E] in about 5 m depth with 15 scope which I later increased to 40 m. We had come 11.2 M.

Daphne had a problem missing a retaining washer on her swimming ladder. I went over with the dinghy and helped Manolis remove the ladder. After that we both went ashore to the nearby shipyard where we found a replacement washer. After that we 3 had a lovely light lunch in the yard’s upscale restaurant with very cold beer, fancy salad, and eggplant with cheese. All delicious.

Back to our boats we took a rest. Later I helped Manolis re-attach his swimming ladder.

In the evening I had a hot shower and after picking up Manolis we went with the dinghy to the yard where we met Yiorgos. Yiorgos had his car in the yard and he drove us to the Castro or Chora where we walked for over an hour in the narrow labyrinthine streets and alleys. We were able to peak in several houses. All were fancifully furnished and looked very affluent. Yiorgos told us that here are some of the most expensive real estates in Greece.

After our stroll we got back in the car and drove down to Skala where we had a drink and a snack. Tonight there was a full moon and a partial lunar eclipse. We were very lucky to be able and see this, rather rare combination.

It was almost midnight when we all return to our boats.

Lunar Eclipse
The Lunar eclipse from Skala

Tuesday August 8, 2017, Day 15

I had to run the genset to power the coffee grinder for my morning coffee. After I had my coffee I fixed the electric pump that empties the shower water. It needed some rearrangement and tightening of the clamps of its intake hoses.

In the morning I spent some time with Manolis in both Daphne and Thetis.

In the early afternoon Yiorgos came and Manolis served us a nice salad. We did lots of swimming.

I had invited both Yiorgos and Manolis for ouzo in Thetis. Before they came I removed the tent and prepared for them. We had a good time all around. Then we all went to the Tarsanas (ship yard) and drove to Chora. We had been invited by a close friend of Yiorgos and Manolis, Kostas, to his house for a spaghetti dinner. There were with us Kostas’ wife, Maritsa, Kostas’ childhood friend Socrates, and his Lebanese wife Hana. They had come for their daughter’s wedding that took place few days ago.

It was again past midnight when I got back to Thetis.

Wednesday August 9, 2017, Day 16

This was a gusty morning, wind going up to 23 knots and then down to 13 and then to 9.

We decided to go to nearby Grikos and buy some small supplies and bread. Manolis came along and we had a rather choppy dinghy ride driving slowly to avoid getting wet. We secured the dinghy to small quay, just S of Grikos and walked. There was no grocery store to be found. After asking we were told that the nearest store was in Skala. It was hot and we walked back to the quay and then returned to our boats.

Later Manolis came to Thetis and we had a light lunch.

Several boats kept coming and going. Yiorgos came later. We made a plan to meet at the Tarsanas (ship yard) for dinner around 7:30.

I cleaned the side of Thetis’ hull from the accumulated weed. After I removing the tent I picked up Manolis, as we had arranged, and went to the yard where Yiorgos met us.

I had brought my MacBook and connected it to their WiFi. I did some catching up on CruisersWiki, that is I edited some new entries and I authorized several new applicants.

Soon Yiorgos left as he was meeting some other friends. Manolis and I had a nice dinner. We both had a large salad. I then had a grilled rofos (ροφός - dusky grouper - epinephelus marginatus) and Manolis had octopus with pasta.

Around 11 we returned to our boats.

Thursday August 10, 2017, Day 17

After coffee I did some banking using the iPad. I then prepared for departure. Our plan was for both Daphne and Thetis to relocate north to Agrio Livadhi but before going there I wanted to stop in Skala and get a few supplies including gasoline for the genset and the outboard.

I raised the anchor at 0830 and motored slowly, towing the dinghy and running the water-maker the 2.9 M to Skala (Σκάλα) [37° 19.7' N 026° 32.7' E] where I arrived at 0930. I anchored in 6 m depth with 35 m scope.

I then went ashore and got the gasoline filling the 2 small canisters. After that I drove the dinghy to the center harbor where I got fresh bread, spring water, and a few other odds and ends. Before leaving the harbor I called Manolis and told him that I was ready to leave. I got back to Thetis, stowed the provision, and raised the anchor it was then 1040. By that time Daphne had arrived.

The wind was 10 - 18 knots from the N. I motored slowly to Agrio Livadhi (Άγριο Λιβάδι) [37° 20.5' N 026° 33.5' E] arriving at 1115 after 2.1 M. My first attempt to anchor was not successful. When I reversed to test the anchor it dragged. So, I re-anchored in 5 m depth and let out 40 m of chain. This time the anchor held. And after snorkeling I saw that it was well embedded in the sand.

Daphne too had some difficulty anchoring and I went over to help Manolis. Soon both boats were secured. We had a light lunch in Thetis.

In the evening we both went ashore for a walk. We found that the taverna Glaros (Γλάρος) which I thought had gone out of business was open and operating. We returned to our boats and ate in Thetis the rest of the pot roast and some pasta that Manolis had brought.

Friday August 11, 2017, Day 18

The night was quiet and I woke up just before 6. I worked for a while on the computer bringing bank accounts up to date. Then at 8, as we had arranged, I went over with the dinghy to Daphne and picked up Manolis. We tied the dinghy on the small dock on the north side of the cove.

We then hiked up the steep hill around the point and ended up at the village of Kampos. There we sat at the lovely old fashioned kafenio (καφενίο - café) and I had a fresh orange juice and Manolis a coffee. We then walked back.

I finished reading Spyros Admiral Miaoulis (in Greek). For my thoughts while reading this book see Miaoulis. For lunch I made an omelet with the last Kalami eggs.

In the afternoon I washed down the cockpit that was getting full of crumps. In the evening I had an ouzo and then picked up Manolis and we went to the Glaros taverna. Indeed the taverna was shut for the last 3 years because the proprietor had a stroke. Now his son and his wife opened it a few weeks ago. We had various mezedakia (appetizers), salad, and fried squid (kalamarakia). All were good.

Saturday August 12, 2017, Day 19

In the morning I did some work on the computer and paid outstanding bill, etc. Now I am good for the next 10 days or so.

Manolis and I had decided do relocate our boats to the nearby Livadhi tou Geranou (Λιβάδι τού Γερανού) [37° 20.7' N 026° 35.3' E]. I raised the anchor in 0935 and motored running the water-maker and towing the dinghy the 1.6 M. I arrived at 1005. The wind was 15 - 25 knots mostly from the N. I anchored in 5.7 m over sand and let out 40 m of chain. I also deployed the little buoy to mark the location of the anchor, then I snorkeled and saw that the anchor was well set.

I put up the tent. In the afternoon while I had a nap a large inflatable came and tied to my marker buoy as if it was a mooring. Fortunately Manolis saw them and told them off. I snorkeled again and checked the anchor. They had displaced it. I hard reversed to embed it again in the sand. The offending inflatable had anchored nearby. I went over to tell them that they had dislodged my anchor. They were the rudest people imaginable and certainly they were not apologetic.

For our dinner I made sauce with fresh tomatoes, onions, garlic, thyme, and wine. I cooked it very slowly. While the sauce was simmering Manolis and I had an ouzo. I then boiled some pasta and served with the sauce and freshly grated Parmezan cheese. I should have gotten more supplies in Skala because I was already running low.

Sunday August 13, 2017, Day 20

This morning, after I put up the tent, Manolis and I went with the dinghy to the little jetty in the Panayia tou Geranou cove and then walked up to the chapel where we enjoyed the view. It was very calm and there was almost no wind.

We swam a lot. Then Manolis got a call from our friend Dr. Yiorgos Haritakis. He was taking a guest couple with S/Y Rita II to Tiganakia when his engine’s water-pump stopped working. I hailed him on the VHF and tried to give him some troubleshooting ideas but none of them helped. Finally without the engine and no wind for sailing he asked us to go to the rescue.

We decided to go with Daphne and prepared a towing sling. Yiorgos had given us his fix and we went to meet them. He also prepared a long towing line which when we were close threw its end to me. I tied a knot from the line’s end to the sling. So we then motored at about 3.5 knots to Diakofti. Manolis drove the boat and both Yiorgos and I watched the tow line and made sure that it was taught and not slack. The operation was so successful that we managed to get S/Y Rita II directly to her mooring in the yard. Of course, being very calm helped. Yiorgos picked up the mooring and he secured his boat while we too picked up another mooring.

Yiorgos insisted that we join him and his guests for lunch in the Tarsanas restaurant. He picked us up with his dinghy. We had a very pleasant lunch, then back to Daphne and we motored back to Livadhi tou Geranou. By that time it was after 5 PM. We swam and checked our anchors.

Later I removed the tent and Manolis came for an ouzo after which we went ashore to the local taverna. Manolis had a salad and octopus cooked in wine while I had 4 small but very fresh and tasty barbounia (μπαρμπούνια - red mullets - mullus surmuletus).

Back with the dinghy I left Manolis on his boat and returned to Thetis. I lied down in the cockpit to watch the Peseid meteor shower. I saw only one meteor but it was spectacular.