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Barry's Blog #167 - Busy doing nothing

Updated: Feb 27, 2021

My blog last week was pitifully brief and the main reason for that was because I left it until the very last minute to write it. This wasn't a moment of uncharacteristic procrastination on my behalf, it was many moments of other stuff just getting in the way.

Most of Saturday was spent replying to comments on our latest YouTube video and responding to private messages and emails. Then late on Saturday afternoon Aannsha and I were discussing what footage we had for the following week's video and it turns out it wasn't a lot.

Looking at our options we came up with a plan to sail to Kekova for an overnight stop before continuing further east to spend Tuesday and Wednesday nights at Finike marina before returning to Kaş marina on Thursday. Checking the Interwebs, the wind and weather looked favourable and we were excited to be finally getting out of Kaş and just being somewhere else.

On Sunday we prepped A B Sea as much as we could, swapping out storm lines for slip lines, topping off the fresh water tanks, checking the engine and generally making everything ship shape for an early Monday morning departure from the marina.

However, at around 03:00 on Monday morning, the wind gods changed their minds about giving us favourable conditions as the wind began to blow really hard from the east, that was the direction we wanted to go. By the time 09:00 rolled around it was obvious that we weren't going anywhere.

New kid on the block

Kristjan has just bought a 2017 Leopard 48 catamaran and before he arrived in Kaş he asked me to check it over and let him know if there was anything that needed attention. We're going to do a special episode on Kris's boat so I won't go into much detail right now, suffice to say that it is an ex-charter boat and has been storm damaged.

Roll forward a couple of weeks and Kris arrived at Kaş marina from the United States of America armed with as many boat parts and spares as he could fit into his luggage. Even with all that after a good look around his boat he still managed to write up a significant list of more boat stuff he needed and asked me where best to buy it all. I'd already spent a morning showing Kris around Kaş and pointing out the useful stores and workshops and looking at his list it was obvious that a trip to Marmaris would be needed. Tuesday was the designated shopping day and we set off at 07:30 hrs for the 3 hour drive. Boat stuff bought, takeaway lunch eaten in the back office of East Marine chandlery store and we were back in Kaş by 19:00 hrs.

Social time

On Wednesday we did some social media stuff in the morning, visited Jim and Suzzie on Acheron for a late lunch and drinks, then on the way back to A B Sea we stopped by Spicy Lady for a couple of drinks and a long chat. I was certainly in no fit state to write a blog that evening.

On Thursday it seemed like everyone visited us on board A B Sea and I simply could not get into the flow of writing a blog.

Friday was my last chance to write before our blog and vlog release time of 09:00 hrs (local time) on Saturday and as you will have seen it certainly wasn't the most entertaining or prolific blog I've ever written and all of the above are the reasons why.

Winter is here

Although the winter weather here at Kaş is generally mild, we've always known that February would be the month with the worst of it. You may recall that we actually went out and bought an oil filled electric radiator in the first month of being in Turkey in preparation for the winter cold spells.

One of the first signs that winter is coming is waking up to condensation beading around the aluminium frames of the ports and hatches. There's not much you can do about it as the very action of two people breathing inside an enclosed boat puts lots of moisture into the air. Add to that some cooking and kettle boiling and it become a veritable condensation soup.

I did see one yacht that 'fixed' the condensation problem by covering all of their hatches with insulated layers of fabrics. It worked by keeping the cold outside air away from the aluminium hatch frames. But it had a lot of drawbacks. There was no natural light inside the yacht, the layers had to be weighted down to stop wind blowing them away and when it rained the layers got soaking wet and had to spend a day or so drying out. We'll stick to wiping away the condensation with a kitchen towel.

My beloved onesie bear suit has been getting a good workout this winter too. Although it's been worn mostly in the morning hours before the day warms up, so it hasn't managed to be featured in any lengthy video footage so far.

Kill switch

Since we put out episode #155 we have received a lot of helpful feedback from our viewers about how to manually shut down a diesel engine. Unlike a petrol engine which requires an electrical spark to burn the fuel, the fuel in a diesel engine is ignited by compression. That means that to stop a petrol engine instantly you just need to stop the flow of electricity from the battery. To stop a diesel engine you need to stop the flow of either fuel or air.

All engines are laid out differently, even engines from the same manufacturer so it took us a little bit of figuring out what we were looking for and when we found it, how it functioned. But we can now confidently stop the flow of fuel in an instant should we need to in the future.

If you own a boat with a diesel engine you may want to check out this week's video and then have a look to see if you can shut your engine down manually like we did.

Santa's church

We always get a mixed reaction from our viewers when we put out episodes that are either entirely about visiting an ancient site or include a segment showing an ancient site. Generally we'll try and mix and match some boat stuff and some ancient stuff in the one episode, but as I stated at the beginning of this blog it is not always easy to get out there and film sailing footage, especially during the winter months in the Mediterranean.

In this week's video we feature the church of Saint Nicholas in the Turkish city of Demre.

Saint Nicholas is the patron saint of sailors, merchants, archers, repentant thieves, prostitutes, children, brewers, pawnbrokers, unmarried people, and students in various cities and countries around Europe. His legendary habit of secret gift-giving gave rise to the modern day figure of Santa Claus.

Nicholas was born (March 270 > December 343AD) in this part of the world and went on to be an early Christian bishop during the time of the Roman empire.

Around 200 years after Nicholas's death, the Saint Nicholas Church was built in ancient Myra over the site of the church where he had served as bishop, and his remains were moved to a sarcophagus in that church. In 1087, while the Greek Christian inhabitants of the region were subjugated by the newly arrived Muslim Seljuk Turks, a group of merchants from the Italian city of Bari removed the major bones of Nicholas's skeleton from his sarcophagus in the church without authorization and stole them away to their hometown, where they are now enshrined in the Basilica di San Nicola. The remaining bone fragments from the sarcophagus were later removed by Venetian sailors and taken to Venice during the First Crusade.

We got very lucky in visiting the church out of season in January 2021 thereby missing the crowds of mostly Russian tourists that visit during the summer. Saint Nicholas is the saint most cherished in Russian people's hearts as it is said that he has saved Russia many times from catastrophe.

That should do it for this week, remember to check out the video because there are puppies. Stay safe wherever you are and whatever you're doing and I'll bring you more tales from Sailing A B Sea next week.

To watch the video that accompanies this blog click here.


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