Leisurely sailing year 2022

Leisurely sailing year 2022

June 2022 marked the beginning of the fifth year of our sailing adventure. The past year will go in the books as a somewhat lazy year, sailing-wise. Our boat Aina spent her fourth winter afloat in Crete, in the marina of Agios Nikolaos. One of our crew kept her company during the stormy Cretan winter, while the other worked in cold and snowy Finland. News of war, disease and inflation depressed everyone’s mood. For balance, we enjoyed the summer in the warm Ionian, detached and stress-free. As long-term travellers, we sometimes get tired or even bored of travelling – as funny or downright criminal as that may sound. But cruising is a lifestyle just like any other. It’s life, and it comprises different phases.

Kythira

In our previous life, we only sailed on holidays. It was fine to land on a new island every day and see every sight we could squeeze into our itinerary. But no one can keep such a pace indefinitely – most people need to unwind at home on a couch now and then. Some even claim they need work to keep their heads together – weirdos. Cruising sailors are simultaneously on an adventure and at home, and there’s no escaping boat work. There’s regular upkeep and the occasional surprise the boat decides to schedule for herself. The to-do list keeps growing at the bottom faster than you can tick things off at the top.

Vasiliki, Lefkas

This year we made a short visit to the boatyard. Several big-ticket items were due – one new and one rebuilt sail, fixing the dinghy outboard, inspecting the life raft, and many, many new parts and equipment. Four years of cruising in salty waters have not treated our Aina with silk gloves. She shows her age and wear, as do her crew, I’m sure. Technically all three of us are pretty sound, but we’re much less into the wax-on-wax-off work than Sunday sailors.

Vlicho, Lefkas

Despite the leisurely pace, we sailed almost 800 nautical miles during the 2022 season. We visited fascinating new places as well as several old acquaintances. Towards the end of the season, we even managed to cross a sea border, having spent three whole years in Greece. Our winter base this year is Brindisi, Italy. It’s too early to speculate about next year’s plans while the long winter lies ahead. My passage-planning fingers are itching a great deal, but we’ll try to be patient and keep living in the moment. Stay tuned, lovely readers, we’ll keep you posted!

We wish everyone happiness and peace for 2023!

Brindisi

Miscellaneous statistical bits from 2022

5 nights we sailed through
120 nights at anchor
66 nights in a harbour or town quay
14 nights on a boatyard
20 anchorages
2 harbours
5 islands
4 Finnish sailboats encountered
1 caught fish (tuna)
over 100 books read or listened

Go west! Great plan, a challenging execution…

Prettiest town: Ostuni
Nicest village: Vasiliki, Lefkas
Most interesting island: Kythira
Funniest sight: Trulli of Alberobello
Most beautiful church: Cathedral of Otranto
Longest passage: Crete – Kythira 157 nm
Best day: day sailing with a Finnish-Greek family in Lefkas
Biggest achievement: sailing from Greece to Italy
Best fish market: Mola di Bari
Best bread: Aina’s rye bread made from Cretan rye flour
Best comfort food: Pickled herring from Ikea, Bari
Best pizza: La Scalinata, Brindisi
Best local delicacy: Primitivo di Puglia

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