Friday, May 29, 2009

Cruising the Ionian

I'm always pleasantly surprised when a rendezvous comes together, especially one which is at the mercy of the elements. I'd only the water and fuel to take on when I was spotted by Rob and Joe. They'd cunningly timed their arrival just as Kika became reasonably presentable.

I was a little worried that Rob and family, not being used to life afloat, might miss home comforts especially when compared to the functional but basic facilities on board Kika. For example, although I have an indoor shower, I almost exclusively use the cockpit shower. I needn't have worried, everyone readily adapted, and the Ionian ports cater well for the requirements of their floating visitors with showers available in most ports.

It was an easy fun week exploring the nearby islands, stopping for lunch at an anchorage en-route and arriving late-afternoon in one of many attractive small port-towns. Quite a contrast to the previous week's dash across the Aegean. We even (nearly) perfected a Mediterranean mooring routine, with Rob letting out the anchor chain, Judy improving her warp throwing skills and I attempting to reverse Kika into the available berth. Joe and Grace provided encouragement where needed.

Rob brought lots of exciting technical "toys" onboard. An Arduino board was one, which we programmed to be a rudimentary oscilloscope. The idea being it would help me with autopilot fault finding.

The only slight boat related drama was as we left Astakos. The same burnt plastic smell began emanating from around the chart table. A few days before I'd assumed it was coming from the autopilot. This time it couldn't be the autopilot as I had plenty of steering helpers. There was a bay close by so we stopped ostensibly for a swim, but really it gave me a chance to locate the problem. It turned out to be a melted sparking fuse holder used by the wind-generator/solar panel. Isn't the fuse supposed to blow rather than the fuse holder melt? One mystery solved and I soon was in the water myself after wiring in a spare holder and fuse.

26th May, Kastos: N38deg 34.0' E20deg 54.7'
27th May, Kalamos southern anchorage:N38deg 35.9' E20deg 53.2'
28th May, Kalamos town: N38deg 37.4' E20deg 55.9'
29th May, Anchorage close to Astakos: N38deg 30.3' E21deg 02.1'

No comments: