"You like going into small holes don't you."
Aannsha doesn't even realise she's doing some of her double entendra's anymore! That was her response to me sighing heavily at the idea of emptying out another locker and once again crawling inside the hull of A B Sea to secure the new safety equipment we were installing into the cockpit.
As a crew of two we have to take safety onboard very seriously and our worst case scenario is if one of us goes overboard. Even in light weather conditions it would be very bad. Our RYA training taught us the man overboard procedures. But the main problem with it, for a crew of two, is that the procedure calls for one person to keep an eye on the person in the water and to be continuously pointing at them. So who's going to start the engine, put the sails away and turn the boat around for the rescue manoeuvre?
The plan is to stay out of the water
During our passage from Spain to Turkey there were a few times when the wind was blowing really hard and we had to secure ourselves in the cockpit with our safety harnesses. That was when we noticed there were no dedicated harness attachment points. That had to be remedied.
A trip to the hardware store in Kaş town did not deliver what I was looking for, so I wandered off to the chandlery at Kaş marina. They did have in stock several different sized stainless steel padeyes but none of them looked chunky enough for my liking. A quick shuffle through the pages of the chandlery catalogue and I spotted one I liked the look of. I generally tend to over engineer jobs like this, after all you don't want to be saving a few dollars on something that's meant to save your life. With four padeyes placed on order, along with a few other items on my shopping list, I was informed that they'd all be ready for pick up later in the week.
Fun fact: Yachties refer to chandlery catalogues as boat porn!
There's always one
Time passed, the parts arrived and the job was on. I'd sourced four stainless steel backing plates from a local steel business and had holes pre-drilled. A warm sunny day was chosen because it's no fun working outside in the rain and getting everything that was in the lockers soaking wet.
The individual padeyes were getting installed at both helm positions and both cockpit seating positions and access to the backing plates to tighten the self locking nuts was via four lockers. Three of the lockers provided easy access with only minimal contents removal needed, but there's always one isn't there.
The locker that holds our cooking gas cylinders has a shaped insert to stop the cylinders rattling around and poking through that insert was a perfectly angled copper gas pipe that would not allow removal of the shaped insert without breaking something. This is the moment I let out a big sigh as I realised that we'd need to empty out the scuba cylinders locker, remove the internal wooden sides and once again I'd be wriggling through a small hole to get access to the inside of the hull.
Placement positions were agreed upon, black sharpie marked the holes and the drilling began. It all went quite smoothly really, it just took a little longer than I imagined as boat jobs tend to do.
Now we have four very chunky stainless steel padeyes in handy locations that we can tether to which will guarantee that we both stay very securely attached to the boat and very much not in the water.
A magical place
We've seen so many wonderful places in Turkey and they all have their own special appeal. But one place we visited felt very magical.
Pinara, which sits at the foot of Mount Cragus, was one of the three major cities in the Xanthos valley and one of the six principal cities of Lycia and although much of it is now gone, what still remains is wondrous.
A 4th century BC historian, called Manecrates, noted that settlement at Pinara existed as early as the 5th century BC after the leaders of the city of Xanthos split their citizens into three groups to ease the burden on the overpopulated Xanthos. One group settled at Pinara and over time achieved an amazing feat by excavating hundreds of rectangular burial tombs into the vertical east face of the 450 metre high flat-topped Mount Cragus.
Pinara was also a religious centre dedicated to Apollo, Athena, and Aphrodite and it was at Aphrodite's temple that Aannsha discovered the unusual and unique heart-shaped columns. There is also evidence that the temple was a phallic worship site with a very defined phallus carved into one of the tumbled construction blocks.
Tombs of all sizes are scattered around Pinara including one of the largest sarcophagi in Lycia. Most tombs are house-type or free-standing sarcophagi, but the most fascinating tomb is the "Royal Tomb", built for an important ruler and featuring detailed reliefs depicting scenes of walled cities.
Of course no ancient site would be complete without an amphitheatre and at Pinara there's a Greek-style theatre at the lower elevation of the city which dates back to the 2nd century BC and has seating for 3,200 spectators.
We spent hours wandering around and poking our heads inside the tombs and once again we were the only tourists in town. Even in the height of summer Pinara doesn't get as crowded as other ancient sites in Turkey, as it is the second-most least-visited site of the Xanthos Valley after Sidyma.
If you ever find yourself visiting Turkey we recommend that you check it out, it's magical.
As always our blogs are written as a complimentary addition to our weekly YouTube videos and you can see our visit to Pinara and the padeyes installation by clicking here episode 064.
Link to Barry's next blog