When it rains, it pours. After the troubles with our stern anchor in Kilada, the bow anchor spontaneously breaks from the chain when we leave Vivari’s anchor bay. Fortunately it doesn’t happens until the anchor is completely hoisted. As soon as the pole of the anchor hits the bowsprit, the connecting swivel falls apart. I utter a cry of bewilderment and thank our guardian angel, whoever it may be. If this had happened during the night, we might all have ended upon the rocks.
We are on our way to Paralia Astrous. Strong winds are expected in the coming days and this seems to be a well-protected harbour. We will have to moor bow to again though. With the perils in Kilada still fresh in our memory, that does not feel so comfortable now. We consider our options and decide to do it again anyway, but better then last time. We lower the stern anchor further from the quay, keep the line tighter and put an extra weight on the line that we lower down with another line. An additional advantage is that the anchor line now also goes down more steeply and other ships no longer run into it as quickly. Ron checks everything diving down and although he cannot see the anchor, we are pretty sure that we are in good hands. The anchor line is real tight.
Strong winds are gusting here for a few days, but our anchor won’t budge. So that seems to be ok. But the wind is not our biggest problem. Every day most of the yachts leave the harbour and new ones enter. With their often poorly executed anchor maneuvers they are the biggest threat to our anchor now. The wind is on our butt, that means that we will immediately be on the concrete quay with our bow if someone accidentaly picks up our anchor. And there are very bad skippers among them. The larger the rental yacht, the greater the incompetence, it seems. To top it all, a mega yacht is trying to moor next to us. Although a layman can see that this ship, about 40 meters long, is really too big for this port, they still do.
The megayacht is also troubled by the fierce wind gusts and a lot of motor usage is needed to keep it straight. Coco is now almost knocked off her anchor by the enormous turbulence of the water caused by this. In uncensored Dutch I let the crew know how I feel about this. The owner says ‘sorry’, but seems to shrug his shoulders. As soon as they fix their mooring lines, they decide to leave again. Indeed, it is not working, they now also conclude. A lot of fuss for nothing. And like this it goes on for much of the day. The three of us only dare to get off the boat when all the boats are moored, evening falls and nothing can go wrong any more. Then we hike in the cool of the evening twilight near the remains of the old castle and enjoy the tranquillity and the beautiful views.
On our last morning there a Romanian 50-foot rental yacht tries to moor next to us without having any idea how to tackle this. The strong crosswind now makes this an impossible task for them. Together with the crew of our neighbouring boats, we stand watching this with pinched buttocks. Fortunately, they eventually cut their losses and moor elsewhere alongside. On the lower shore. Can’t miss. But for me, the total lack of skills of the Romanians is the straw that breaks the camel’s back. I want to get away from here. I no longer feel safe. So we leave in a rush.
“Trust comes on foot, but goes on horseback,” as the old Dutch saying goes. Trust is hard to gain, but easy to lose. I have lost it for now.