Aeolian Islands

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August 23rd 2012
Published: August 23rd 2012
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23 August 2012

We have spent a very busy few days in Milazzo. This was the opportunity to resolve the diesel leak in the reserve tanks and the puncture in the Kevlar sail. Poseidon Marina in Milazzo was “perfecto” for such an occasion. Not a smart-tarts marina with rip-off prices but predominantly a marina to support the Poseidon dive centre with the requisite facilities. In two and half short and very busy days we had everything back up to speed, bar the watermaker - which will need specialist loving from an HRO rep in the Balearics or Barcelona.

Both Salva and Salvatore (it would appear that the Italian for engineer is “Salvatore” – as all we met were called the same thing) were fabulous. It was not at all what we had expected. They were on-time, enthusiastic and hard-working. In fact our experience, so far, in Italy has been amazing. The sailmaker was extremely polite and did not even giggle when I launched myself “Tom Daly styl-ee with triple salco and pike” into the marina off the wobbly passarelle (plank between the boat and the quay). Lisa was initially concerned that I was OK and then asked if I might repeat it as she had missed it. The Spanish on the neighbouring catamaran applauded for both my technique and artistic interpretation.

We also had the opportunity to catch up on emails and skype a few people. It was so nice to see all of the Pascoe gang and Auntie Sally for the first time since we have left. We also heard from Mum and Dad and heard of Nora’s sore joints. It seems that the Duncan’s propensity for arthritis is transferred into the canine world too. It is always nice to see friends and family. Whilst we don’t miss the ping of texts and answer phone messages we do find life quite lonely – especially for Lisa and the boys. It was nice to see the photos of the French kids, who the boys played so well with but is always nice to see people we know. Skype has been invaluable for both boat information from Dad but for the morale factor of seeing those we know and love at home.

On the last night in Milazzo we were visited by Christian, the catamaran skipper / judge of the aforementioned free-style diving escapade, who brings clients out to the Lipari / Aeolian Islands on a regular basis. He basically gave us his 6-day itinerary. The Aeolian Islands are some 20 miles off the NE coast of Sicily. They are a crop of active volcanos in a UNESCO national park and are simply beautiful. We are now on the aptly named Isola Volcano. The waters are crystal clear and the anchor can be seen 15 metres below the boat. Yesterday we pumped up the dinghy and motored into Grotto Del Cavallo, a large volcanically formed cave. The water is turquoise within it which may be a trick of the light or something coming from the rock colouration – regardless it was pretty amazing.

This morning’s swim was equally lovely, whilst enjoying a skinny-dip before breakfast, a small (but perfectly formed) jellyfish bobbed by me and cruelly stung my naked bottom as I climbed out of the water. Needless to say this injury, in a delicate place, was treated with the respect that such a serious wound in a sensitive area might be. It never fails to amaze me the levels of sympathy / ridicule bestowed upon the crew’s captain and protector. I feel sure that all fathers will understand the high esteem in which they are held. Contrary to this, so much as to think that a slip-up by the wife or children could be deemed as funny would be tantamount to a flogging offence and a cessation of privileges until further notice - funny isn’t it – “one man’s terrorist is another man’s freedom fighter.”

Additional photos below
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Prehistoric man looks at wonderment at the volcano on Volcano

24th August 2012

Hi Guys, Following your blog with envy... looks amazing! What's it really like being in such a confined space? Not sure I could cope with that bit, but I'm sat here on a depressing grey morning watching Good Morning (supposed to be working) wishing I was doing something a bit more exciting with my life like you are... How are the boys getting on? Keep in touch and keep blogging! lots of love Linda xxxxx
31st August 2012

Meeting you...
It was nice meeting you this summer. Enjoy your trip. Life is short! A big hug to all of you from the Kiy Family
6th September 2012

Thanks to you all. Best wishes, The Duncans

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