Thursday, 26 April 2012

Start of another era...

Sandra in the sugar scoop.
 Well it looks like we've only gone and done it!!  We're just in the process of putting down a deposit on the Yacht formally known as "Trikala" soon to be know as "????".  I am still awaiting the charter company getting back to me with the Sterling bank account details to make the transfer as I don't really want to pay in Euro s but I think to all intents and purposes this is the baby.

Sandra is very exited to be starting on this new adventure, I hope she feels the same when the nights are a little choppy and she isn't shouting at me to be moving back to being a landlubber.

Guess the mystery object?
All in all there are still a few things we will need to do to her before she is really what we want out of a live aboard yacht, so we are currently making lists of things we may need and also things we definitely can take home in the summer when we go back to the UK.  There will also be the small problem of re-homing all our current furniture.  We are hoping to sell most of it here and to this end we will be making another web site to link via various local sites to advertise what we need rid of.  So if any of you guys who read this in Lefkas need something we have talk to us before you go and pay full pops for whatever!

On other things, we have had a busy week making sure the place is in good nick ready for Sandra's dad arriving on the sixth of May.  We have patched up the painting on the outside wall of the house because it was looking decidedly jaded.  Also done a real deep spring clean this week.  Our immersion heater went kaput about four weeks ago and I've only just got around to getting a new one and fitting it so now we don't have to heat the water with the oil boiler any more. But first I had to alter the plumbing arrangement to be able to drain the tank of water in order to get the old heater out.  The first new heater I got was two inches too long to go into the tank so we had to have another trip to the other end of the island to source another after searching various outlets at this end of the island.  Two hours later we have lashings of hot water to use, oh dear I think that I may be forced into having a shower now!  As you can see from the photo, we have a touch of lime in the water here, this element has only been used for five years and most of the lime was knocked off getting it out of the tank.

Hope every one here is enjoying the better weather, I think things have finally taken a turn for the good, unlike in the UK where it seems drought was last months problem.

Thursday, 19 April 2012

Corfiot Easter ...

Liz and Sandra having a midnight tipple watching fireworks.
 We set off early on Friday morning to catch the 8:30 ferry from Igoumenitsa to Corfu.  We were unsure if there would be a manic rush for the boat or not as the unions who crew the ferries had been on strike the previous two days and Corfu is a very popular destination for Easter in Greece.

Liz' home made hot cross buns - slurp..
As it turned out there was no backlog from the strike it's even possible that the ferries were unaffected by it.  So we arrived on Kerkera island (Corfu) an hour and a half later and had to find the MacDonald's to satisfy Tony's fetish, if there's a big Mac within driving distance then Tony will be there!  That priority out of the way then we headed for Gouvia Marina to have a look at the boats we had arranged to see.

Looks nice eh! name change needed though.
We looked at several Yachts and to be honest some of them really did need a lot of work.  There was a 39 foot Apollo which I quite liked the look of but Sandra thought it was far too big and with the benefit of hindsight it still needed quite a bit of money spending on it and was already at the very top of our budget.  We had a word with Colin the broker about the Gibsea we had looked at which were fine but the layout was not to our taste and he said that there were some more which would be coming up soon and they may even sell them now, if we would like to have a look he would arrange it with the manager of the charter company Mick.

Out with them old pots!
When we got on board Sandra was a much happier bunny she loved it, and although she's only a small Yacht, we will have plenty of room on board especially if we put an awning over the cockpit for winter which will give us an extra room.  So this lady hopefully will become the latest family member.  She is not available until September due to charter commitments but that suits us fine as we don't get back back from the UK until then after our summer break.

Look at the size of that one!
Saturday we were up good and early to get into Corfu town for the parade and to witness the peculiar local custom of throwing pots out of the apartments.  There seems to be several reasons for doing this which range from clearing out the house to ladies trying to catch an available mate, although if it were the latter they are likely to kill them as the bigger pots took three of four people to lift them being made of thick terracotta and five feet tall and about two feet in diameter!  There were hundreds thrown into the streets from all the building around the main square and a crowd of many thousands watching the spectacle.

Part of the parade through Corfu.
 There were many marching bands and of course the typical Greek religious processions with bier's carrying various bits of long dead saints through the town surrounded by the great and the good of the area.

Later we took Liz for a tour of the north of the Island as she had never been there before.  We love the north of Corfu (with the exception of a couple of "little Britain" resorts) and it's always nice to go back and see it again.  The day was finished by sitting on the balcony of our apartment and watching all the fireworks over Corfu town.

 Returning home on Sunday afternoon we took the coastal road from Igoumentisa and visited Sivota and Parga on the mainland which again was worth worth doing as we were passing so close.
Part of the crowd in Corfu town.

Monday was the annual curry cup race to from Nidri to Paleros which traditionally culminates in an Indian meal at the panorama taverna in Paleros.   Due to the very inclement weather we are currently having especially the high winds there were only five boat participated but we drove across for the curry, can't resist a curry!

Yesterday we had Linda and Ray and also Tree and Mike across for late lunch, as usual we had a super meal meal together with lots and lots of chat.

Thursday, 5 April 2012

Some new nayyyyyybours....

Hardly Ascot material methinks!
 Last weekend we got new neighbours of the equine variety.  They have been left by someone in the village in the garden of the house next door.  The owner has been away for three months so I think this is maybe a neighbourly way of keeping the grass mown.  They seemed to like it anyway.
The red top fly trap

She ddi look OK until the rain came.

I've hung up this years red top fly trap.  We tried them last autumn after being plagued the previous year with flies.  They seem to work very well as the first one must have caught millions and there was a noticeable drop in fly numbers.  The manufacturers claim they target females to break the breeding cycle although I would not have wanted the job of sexing the resultant bodies!  At a cost of about £10 from Ebay I think they are great. 

Until yesterday the weather has been great here but as can be expected at this time of year we are now getting some rain and thunder and today we have no electricity, well we had earlier at 153 volts rather than the normal 220/230 but now it's off altogether good job I keep the laptop battery charged for just such a time.
Geoff's Garden spruced up for the spring.
As the weather was good I've given the old car a good clean and polish and she was looking really well but the mucky brown rain has sort of put pay to that.  Never mind It'll wash again.
Jo, Geoff, Libby and Adam enjoying the weather.

During the week I was sent some pictures of Sandra's dad's garden which he has been busy working on during the recent good weather the UK has been experiencing.  I thought I would put a couple on here for every one to see, and also an excuse to show off three of our lovely grand children, Jo, Libby and Adam, cute ain't they!