|While Aquarella plodded along on autopilot I went forward to prepare the anchor. (Screen shot from the video I filmed.)|
I spent a lot of time this summer experimenting both with my drone and GoPro action-camera to get some aerial shots and videos. Some of the video footage will be included in my latest art educational video which will be released shortly. It's difficult to film situations in action when sailing alone but with some planning, a lot of practice and the right equipment it is possible. I realised I have to practise a lot more and there is always a certain degree of risk involved but I'm getting better at it.
I also spent some very valuable time with friends, some of whom came aboard for a while when we discussed, laughed, giggled, ate lunch, drank wine and thoroughly enjoyed ourselves. So, for a while my life wasn't just painting, sailing, writing and filming. I allowed myself time to enjoy and be inspired by others and hopefully give something in return.
|Celebrating a short trip with Charlotte and Jane from Denmark|
|Gaby and Josef from Austria came to say hello|
|David and Sarah from England |
on their boat "Ruby" filmed from my drone.
|Me taking the Genua down in a dead calm before the oncoming storm. ( screen shot from the video)|
At the end of September there was a disturbing weather forecast of a very severe storm over most of Greece including the area I was in. I had to return to Kilada and the boatyard where I have Aquarella in winter so I decided to make a mad dash for it. Sailing alone it took me 10 hours to get there in moderate winds and I arrived in a dead calm.
The following day I rang the boatyard and asked if I could be lifted out as soon as possible. I was put on stand by as 25 other boats had the same idea that day. The following morning they called me on the VHF that it was now Aquarellas turn. The wind was quite strong by then but when I arrived at the lifting dock six strong Greeks helped by holding, pushing and pulling my boat in position under the crane. An hour after getting on dry land all hell broke loose and the storm was over us. I'm so glad I made it ashore in time. The storm, also called medicaine Zorba lasted 5 days and although Aquarella was secured on a very well constructed cradle it still felt scary rocking and vibrating all day and night in the howling wind. It was not safe to go out of the boat as parts from surrounding boats were flying through the air. In the torrential rain the boatyard was partially flooded by a fast flowing river of brown water.
Aquarella will stay where it is now parked for the winter next to a farmyard with chickens, goats and pomegranate trees. The next door neighbour came over before I left and gave me a whole bag of delicious pomegranates. He then calmly went back to slaughter a goat and hang it up in one of the trees.
|The Basimakopoulu boatyard during a lull in the storm.|