Dip your little behind ... (as marked on the chart)

Posted June 16, 2014 at 20:52

After leaving Vrboska with the weather stabilizing, we set out for a week or so of expectation...  - to see whether our Hungarian cruising friend of two years ago, Geza and his lovely daughter Anna (who's just graduated from kindergarten) would be able to reach Croatia, to have a few days together before our company from the States join us.  They were leaving Preveza, Greece with their boat 'Isabell', having to beat into the usual summer NW-lies that make the Otranto Strait nasty...

So with a bit of time on our hand, we picked one of our still free, uncharted, little coves under 'Dipyourlittleass' Point ('Rt. Smociguzica' as marked on the official chart) on the northernmost point of Hvar island - and we had it to ourselves undisturbed for four quiet and sunny weekdays with no boats in sight (save for 1 lunch hour a catamaran passed by). Signs of 'progress' were visible in a yet smaller cove to the south - the old house in ruins from two years ago has been renovated, the cove shoreline 'improved' with new stone docksides, an 'orderly' looking yard planted further behind, thanks whoever, the actual house still well obscured by the couple of remaining large trees near the shoreline.

The nice Hvar scent was abundant, with lots of different birds nesting and singing (including a cuckoo, just like the old cuckoo clocks, this one faintly and pleasantly announcing every minute passing - this can't last forever, cuckoooo...;-)...

Our little hungry gourmet butterfly tasted everything, the cucumbers, cheese, wine, and more wine... It returned the next day for more!  Amazing.
In the mean time, I disassembled the brand new Spectra pump head before installing it and found the high-quality reason why they are manufactured to fail. In reality it is Proconn, but Spectra uses them.  The relatively small height of the slot in the magnet top is a bit loose and it's already rusting, so after a couple of thousands of start/stops (at the end of each watermaking, the flush cycle does about 53 start/stops) it will work its way loose...
So, I applied my last years fix to the new pump shaft as well, and increased the inserted stainless steel pin thickness too, so the magnet sits on the shaft solidly now.

The Clark Pump (pressure intesifier) still leaks a little bit on one side even after new o-rings have been installed. Annoying.

New and old pump, reworked.

On Friday, a smaller (~27ft) local sailboat from Split showed up and tied up a little further outside later inquiring about until when did we plan to stay.  They seemed surprised that they were the first boat we've seen in so many days, and also happy that we were planning to leave on Sunday, because they were planning to stay '20 days'.   He provisionally tied his anchor with a long line to the opposing shore crossing just a few feet ahead of our well dug-in anchor, saying that the holding here is 'suspect' (probably trying to scare the foreigner away) - but he had an old, bruce style anchor which we know is bad for the typically hard packed sand of many areas around here.  He said that in the summer there are often ten (local) boats rafted across like this...  It sounded that they liked the place so much that they would 'stick it out' even when a strong Bora blows which would send a very unpleasant reflected swell there. But they were also a nice and undisturbing couple who quietly enjoyed nature, unlike most charterers who descend in crowded boats in a haste like bees onto honey...

A quiet day later we left early in the morning, unintentionally disturbing his morning dinghy-fishing outside, since as soon as he saw us leaving, he hurried back into the cove to reposition his boat lest someone else do the same first...  There was a small, traditional wooden, decked fishing boat from Jelsa (nearby village) there as well by now with two people on board.

Smociguzica Pt (right) and Brac Island (left)

On the north side of Scedro island we found a somewhat exposed bay to the NE but otherwise well protected from the prevailing weather where we spent another two sunny days...  All the boats kept passing by and entering the next, largest bay on the north side of this island where a seasonal restaurant was having its buoys.  But on the first day, a local fisherman deposited three local and yapping ladies on the other side of the bay who proceeded to converse as if they were separated by the length of the bay while going around collecting living shells of the rocks for food/fishing... Later they retreated from the heat to the shadow of some trees on the shore while expecting their ride to take them back...

We scooted over to Loviste (W.end Peljesac peninsula) at the end of the second day expecting a bit more of the NE-ly during the night than the previous night.  There it was still very quiet on shore as well as in the bay, we recognized each other with the local supermarket lady, spent a bit of reminiscing time outside under the shade of a tree with an ice-cream and a cold beer out of the supermarket...

A new pet...

... no more ice-cream...

Another two nights later off to "Dazzle's Bay" on Korcula (opposite Badija island) where we refueled and reprovisioned in Korcula by dinghy.

A view to Badija island (left) from Korcula's wall, "Dazzle's Bay" further away...

All this time we were following Isabell's path up north that was hindered by unrelenting near-gale conditions in the Otranto Strait on the one side and thunderstormy humid weather on the Greek Ionian sea.  We exchanged quite a few text messages on the subject of weather forecasts. We followed them across the Strait from Corfu into Otranto and then from there to Brindisi, which is when this current 'cyclone' formed in Tyrrhenian sea that ruined the weather for a week.  It became clear that our planned meet up at Lastovo wouldn't happen until after T&S arrival, so we turned back, rounded Hvar back to Vrboska bay (the beach-side restaurant there is quite pleasant and good, worth a dinghy-paddle in from the anchorage) and from there to Tiha Luka for the first part of the weather.  Now we're finally in Trogir for another three days before A-day.  The cyclone is supposed to fill in by the day after that, not before dumping a significant amount of more rain - but there are sunny breaks too in between.

Trogir from the anchorage, looking east, ACI marina on the right. The planes landing onto Split Airport nearby are flying low above us (in easterly winds)...

A new marina being built next to ACI marina, flanking the shipyard that's busy building ships... How scenic.  There's another new marina full with boats right behind us (not visible here)

Trogir is another medieval (Venetian-style) town with beautiful old buildings from that era. And I have a bout with stubborn swimmers ear... (in Serbian/Croatian, 'my ear aches' usually means 'i couldn't care less' ... - I wish it were true ;-(.
- Z -