Today was a simple day sail with me and a whole load of girls. Excellent! Always guaranteed to cause a stir in the marina, especially with it being such a hot day and much suntan lotion being applied to semi-naked bodies.
After Jon did the rounds in the dinghy we went off to practice some man overboard under sail, before returning to Bodrum marina. We tried dropping the pasarelle to lay the warps on in order to assist the marina boys but all I managed to achieve whilst jack knifing Esper in reverse was to gently nudge the guardrail of the boat next door. Oooops! ‘Jon!!!!!’
A lack of wind meant we motored our way to Catal Ada for some knot practice and then headed back round the Bodrum peninsular headland to Aspat Köyü. Here we anchored for the night and I was introduced to red mullet, which is deep fried and eaten whole, head and all. I think this is the first time I’ve eaten fish head, fin and tail but I have to say it was pretty tasty! I thoroughly recommend it!
After a great night’s sleep Jon’s off in the dinghy, rowing to each boat in the flotilla giving them the low-down on what to do and what to expect for today’s sail. It was interesting watching Jon at work and it quickly made me realise I never want to be running flotilla holidays!
Another dead calm day meant we had perfect conditions to practice boat handling techniques under motor. Sounds straightforward, doesn’t it? Unfortunately Jon and I learnt that Esper doesn’t really like reversing. At all. We must have spent a good hour just going round in circles, backwards and forwards, working out exactly which way the prop-walk affected the boat.
The complete lack of wind today was made up for by being introduced to a very nice couple, Peter and Gilly. Turns out my Day Skipper course would include a motor over to Catal Ada with Peter and Gilly on board to check it out as a possible wedding location!
I’d spent a fair bit of time considering possible sailing courses in order to further my sailing skills. The problem was I wasn’t sure what level I was at. Whilst I’ve only been sailing for three years I’ve managed to cover over 8,000nm across a broad range of vessels in a number of locations, but did I know how to trim the main sail properly?
We took the sails down at Kara Ada but it had been a great sail. I was given a new home in the marina too. Nothing unusual there. Every time I come back I always seem to be given a new home! Still, it’s a great way of meeting new people and practising my berthing skills!
Today was an excellent sail to Mersincik, leaving Chris at the helm whilst I learnt a little more about sail trim (boat gets pulled into the wind = too much sail aft of the boat, which normally means letting out the main sail).
Chrichriss, Liz’s brother, was over for the week and Liz had clearly had a word with him. Something along the lines of “Jamie’s getting very agitated living on the boat and not being able to go sailing due to lack of available crew so you WILL go sailing with him!”. So Chris ‘volunteered’ for a three day trip that would involve some more anchoring in new locations that I had not yet visited.
When I took over from Salih on our anchor watch the sun was coming up so I made myself comfortable in the cockpit. It was only then that I realised we had moved at least 50 metres from where we had originally anchored! Hmmmmm.
Regular site visitors will already be familiar with Salih and Bilge, two local friends who join us on Esper whenever they are able to take time out from their busy schedules. Their plan is to buy their own boat one day so any experience is important to them. Salih spent six years working on the gullets, so his anchoring tips should have been useful.