An ENE wind at 8-12 knots made for a nice sail from the Porto Vechio anchorage in Cefalu to Termini Imerese. As we entered the harbor, our friend Jayne on Aorangi was headed out for the second time that day with a group from Lega Navale, the local sailing club. We tied up in the slip next to hers for an unexpected reunion — she had to delay her departure for the Tuscan Islands, and we decided to ride out some windy weather in this safe harbor. Two other boats that were in Gaeta this past winter are also here — small world!
Here’s a photo gallery of Leg 2 of our cruise through Southern Italy and Sicily:
We departed the Aeolian Islands today hoping to find some wind for sailing either today or tomorrow as we make our way to Termini Imerese on the north shore of Sicily. No luck with the wind, but we were fortunate to have settled weather for anchoring in Cefalù’s Porto Vechio. We floated peacefully near a rocky promontory, the old city and a long, sandy beach in relatively shallow water (15′). David took the lead in the galley and made a delicious bucatini pasta (hollow spaghetti noodles) with a botarga sauce for dinner. We really love anchoring out.
At noon, we dropped our mooring line and motored across to the island of Lipari where we visited the Aeolian museum and wandered through the quaint old town. The marina manager remembered Lisa from her earlier visit while crewing for Jayne on Aorangi.
When returning to the boat one afternoon during our stay, we saw a swordfish boat return to harbor. We no longer felt challenged in docking our boat with it’s four-foot-long bowsprit — there’s was at least 50′ long!
On an overnight passage last night (06/15/09), we had front row seats to an awesome fireworks show: Stromboli. Our cruising guide notes that the island of Stromboli is known as the oldest lighthouse in the Med because of its regular lava eruptions. At night, the “fireworks show” can be seen for miles around, a fact Lisa can confirm after a recent passage to the Aeolian Islands on a friend’s boat where they watched the same volcano erupt every 10 to 20 minutes for eight hours while approaching from the north.
We arrived in Vibo Valentia Marina Stella del Sud just after dawn this morning after making an overnight passage from Agropoli and only one week since leaving Gaeta. Although there was no wind, we had a nice passage and were treated to a beautiful sunset, starlight, moonrise and sunrise in dead flat calm seas. With the engine on and time on our hands, Lisa produced some delicious food in the galley: egg salad sandwiches for lunch and spaghetti with a homemade garlic-anchiovy-tomato-basil sauce for dinner. She also went to work making limoncello with the lemons from Amalfi. Once the rinds were soaking in alcohol, the remaining lemons were put to use in fresh lemonade. What else do you do when life brings you Amalfi lemons? Several schools of dolphins paid us a visit, but we were very sad to find a dead sea turtle enroute to Vibo Valentia which appeared to have been strangled by a weighted fishing line still around its neck.
We booked a slip for the month here so David could attend a two-week retreat at Rabten-Choeling Tibetan Center in Switzerland, and so Lisa could help our friend Jayne transfer Aorangi, her classic Swan 47, from Gaeta to Sicily with a one-week stop in the Aeolian Islands.