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Jul 17 2021
Today, in a week Patrik and I are (hopefully) in Loano! We’ll be clinking our glasses to celebrate our wedding day, but also the start of our three-week vacation 🥂
On Thursday we’ll drive Odin to the cat hotel…I just hope it will be a tearless bye-bye (I’m the high risk….) 😥
Patrik will slowly pack our car during the week and on Friday morning only our bags will be left to be loaded. At six o’clock in the morning we’ll say “arrivederci” to our house!
My parents will be looking after our home, watering the plants if necessary and empty our letter box.
After this rainy and chilly “summer” we really, really hope we’ll meet the sun and high temperatures in Italy 🌞
Since we’ll skip Corse (again), Patrik figured out a new sailing route and we both are very excited to visit – among other things – the Leaning Tower of Pisa and see the famous coast of Cinque Terre.
Then, we’ll continue our journey further south to Elba, leisurely sail around it, with hopefully some beautiful anchor spots to spend the nights and swim during the days.
Slowly we’ll head north again in order to return to our home marina.
Naturally, we hope Neptune will be well-disposed towards us. Our ability to explore the Italian coast and the island of Elba, depends on the weather, of course ⛵
At this point we can’t say yet, when we’ll be able to present our next post. It all depends on having internet nearby. And this time we plan to spend more time anchoring, instead of sitting in marinas.
Nevertheless, we’ll do some filming and take a lot of pictures to be prepared for the next article.
So, stay tuned and enjoy your time, with or without vacation! 🌺
Jul 10 2021
Me: Odin, here you are! Hello Sweetie, how are you?
Odin: Good, I was sleeping, till you woke me….. *yawn*
Me: Aw, c’mon, don’t be grumpy
Odin: How about a goodie and I’ll think about it?
Me: There you go…
Me: Odin, listen, I need to talk to you
Odin: Yeah? What is it?
Me: Well, you know….Dad and I are going on vacation soon
Odin: Yes, I thought so. But our neighbours will look after me as usual, no?
Me: I’m sorry sweetie. Not this time. They are going away too
Odin: No problem, I’ll look after the house and garden. Nothing new here…
Me: I know you can do that Odin. But who will feed you and look after you every day?
Odin: Easy! Just put a huge bowl with food and water in the kitchen and I’ll be fine
Me: I have no doubt you would manage for a few days. But we are going away for three weeks
Odin: hmm….that’s quite long….
Me: Exactly. So what about a lovely vacation for you as well?
Odin: What? You’re not thinking about taking me with you, do you?
Me: No, I don’t think you would like that. Especially not the long drive to Italy and six hours back again
Odin: Good! So what’s plan B then?
Me: Well, we found a beautiful cat hotel…….
Odin: A WHAT?? You don’t mean that, do you?
Me: Listen sweetie, it’s absolutely the best one I could find. The lady who runs it loves cats and the hotel ooks fabulous. We saw it! You’ll love it there!
Odin: How do you know that? And what about the other cats? And I want to go outside, have you thought about that? And how about my beds and other stuff?
Me: You’ll have your own room, with windows where you can see your neighbour cat. Maybe it’s a pawsome darling beside you…
Odin: Ha! That helps a lot with a glass panel between us…. love the “pawsome”, though 😺
Me: I forgot to mention that via a cat flap you have access to your own private balcony with a beautiful view over the fields and forest. And there, only chicken wire separates you from the balcony next door. So you can talk to your neighbour. How does that sound?
Odin: And my stuff? And can I be outside during the night? Whenever I want?
Me: Yes, of course. The cat flap is open 24/7. And your dad and I will take your beds, toys and even your cat tree there. You’ll have your food and your two toilets. Pretty much the same as you have at home
Odin: ….. *sigh*
Me: What do you say? Sounds still horrible to you?
Odin: What about goodies? Does the lady there have goodies? Do I have to share them?
Me: Of course, you’ll have your goodies you’re used to. We’ll give them to the lady as well, don’t worry! And no, you won’t have to share them!
Odin: And you’ll pick me up again after your vacation?
Me: But of course, sweetie!! How can you ask that? I wish you could come with us, or that our neighbours wouldn’t be away simultaneously…. As soon as we’re back from Italy, we’ll come and happily take you home again! Scout’s honour!
Odin: Don’t exaggerate, I believe you!
Me: And you know what Odin?
Me: This will be the first time for me, that I really can enjoy our vacation. I won’t have to worry that something bad could happen to you… you remember your brother….
Odin: Yeah, that was a terrible time. Still miss him, though…
Me: Me too, every day, believe me! So, this time I can be sure you’re in a safe spot! Sometimes, the nice lady will take some pictures of you and send them to me. That way I know how you are. Sounds ok?
Odin: Yeah, yeah…. I guess, everything has already been arranged and I can’t object, even if I want to…
Me: Yes, it is Odin, I’m sorry. We booked your room a while ago. But we’re 100% sure it’s the best solution for you and dad and me.
Odin: If you say so………….
Me: Aw, c’mon sweetie. You’re sleeping most of the time anyway. So before you know it, we’ll pick you up again. You’ll see…Time will fly!
Odin: I just hope that the cat next door won’t be a kitten who plays all the time….
Me: I’m sure the lady will take care who is beside who. So you won’t be disturbed. She will come and play with you sometimes, if you want.
Odin: Yeah, maybe…but not too often, please! I need my naps, you know!
Me: I’m sure she knows how to treat you well, Odin.
Odin: All right, all right! Then that’s settled…. Can I go back to sleep know? What time is dinner, by the way…….? Please don’t disturb me before dinner is served, thanks *purr* 🐾
Jul 03 2021
Who doesn’t need Google sometimes……..or often (like me)?
I bet it happens countless times, daily or weekly and often we won’t give it a second thought.
Got the needed info – done!
A few months ago, someone at work suggested to use Ecosia instead of Google. But why? Well, one good reason is, it plants trees! 🌳
But it not only shows how many trees have been planted totally by users, but you can also check, how much input your personal searching had so far.
Quite cool and very inspiring.
And since Ecosia generally does the same thing as Google…..why not switch?
Plus, what’s cheaper doing something good for our planet, than for free? Exactly!
I did it a while ago and – voilà – already about 90 trees have been planted with my name tag on them! (Not literally of course 😉.)
You also can get a lot of information about the projects and people behind Ecosia.
I hope I was able to inspire some many of you, dear guests, and wish you all a happy “searching week” 🧐
Jun 26 2021
Recently, Patrik and I pondered about, which upgrades we’ve been done on our yacht.
Countless small ones of course, like sewing magnets on the shower curtain and glued the counterparts on the wall. Installing spice shelfs in the galley, buying new comfortable kapok cushions for the cockpit (not to forget my new hammock, still originally wrapped in its packing). Also new pictures and some deco stuff, in order to get our own personal touch in. Then rearranging the cabinets in the bathrooms with bamboo dishes and small reed baskets (instead of the ugly plastic ones)….. and so on, and so on!
Anyway, a few drastic changes have also been done. These are the – so far – top upgrades we did:
1. New arch which serves as a dinghy & solar panel supporter (RS-INOX)
2. Five solar panels, which produce up to 600watt power (VICTRON)
3. New A.I.S., an Automatic Identification System, where other ships (with A.I.S.) can see us and we can see them, even big container and cruise vessels (AMEC)
4. Replacing plotter, wind indicator, depth-speed-log multi-instrument (RAYMARINE)
5. Replacing anchor, 25 kg (ROCNA Vulcan)
6. New inverter to turn 12VDC into 220VAC (VICTRON)
7. New electric outboard engine (EPROPULSION Spirit 1.0 Plus)
Certainly, we also did a lot of maintenance. Such as cleaning her hull and put some new antifouling on it, in 2019. A new bimini and sprayhood, also in 2019. Changed quite a few sheets and this year we did the service on the mainsail. Also, Patrik finally replaced the old gas hoses and a new horseshoe buoy has been bought! And we bought a new matrass for the master cabin (one who lies on top of the existing one).
So, people writing about living on board are probably right, when saying, it never gets boring, there is always some work to be done! It seems to be the case, indeed!
Here comes a little more detailed explanation of the instruments:
Jun 12 2021
Awesome title! Sounds like a crime thriller 😱
Easy, it’s not as exciting as it sounds. Although…..
On Wednesday night, just after 02.30 a.m. I woke up and started to read for a while, in order to get me sleepy again. Quite an annoying habit!
However, suddenly something brushed my arm. Yikes! What the heck was that?! First, I thought it might have been a moth. When I turned around and shone the iPad light to the floor, I saw “something” quickly disappear around the bed corner 🤔
I believed my intuition and let the moth be a moth.
Not long after, I heard tiny feet scurry on the floor. Well, THAT definitely wasn’t a moth! And sure enough, in my iPad glow I finally spotted a mouse. WHAT??? How…wherefrom…why…???
I jumped up and closed the bedroom door, so it couldn’t disappear and hide somewhere in the big house.
Meanwhile, it dawned on me how the mouse must have come into the bedroom: The night before Odin came home in the middle of the night and jumped on our bed. That’s not unusual. But he looked like he was playing with the blanket and my feet and dozily I hoped, he didn’t bring us a “present”. Soon he lost interest and went downstairs again. I quickly looked through the blanket, if I might find a dead mouse, but – luckily – there was nothing. So, I fell asleep again and forgot the unimportance 🥱😴
BIG MISTAKE, as it turned out! 🐀
Back to last night: After I woke Patrik and told him about our intruder, I went to the cellar to get some cardboard boxes and a pair of gloves.
So, the nightly hunt began…. and lasted 1,5 hours! The tiny creature actually kept us on the go. A couple of times, while Patrik and I crept around the floor, looking for the little bugger, he peacefully sat on our bed, grooming itself! 🐭
Once Patrik came up with a murderous idea: To get Odin and let him do the job! Of course, this bloody plan was immediately disregarded!
At long last we were able to throw a blanket over the beast mouse and immediately wrapped it in it.
While I wrestled with it on the floor *harrumph*, Patrik got a travel bag in which we carefully stuffed the blanket along with mouse (hopefully)!
Together we carried the precious cargo downstairs, in underpants (Patrik) and shortie (me). Through the winter garden, where – mirabile dictu – Odin lay and gave us a fake yawn, and further outside, on to the patio.
Then we opened the bag, took out the blanket and warily opened it. In the dark we caught a glimpse of the finally freed animal, scurrying away towards the lavender. Farewell!
Happy End at least, which was the main thing!
Since it was nearly 04.30 a.m., and I usually get up around five, it wasn’t really worth it going back to sleep. So, I read for a short while, before I went downstairs and got ready for work.
Odin was waiting in the kitchen to get his morning goodies and oat milk. Did he blink and smirk at me……? I’m sure 😸
The day after I searched the net and found out what kind of mouse it was. A thoroughbred Apodemus Flavicollis, a “yellow-necked mouse”. Cute little things (when outside)!
Jun 05 2021
Last weekend Patrik and I did some necessary gardening.
Although, for the major work on the slope we’ve hired a professional gardener. Nevertheless, some small work still had to be done 🌺
Plus, we needed to replace the old edging on the bed. The old one was rotting away and therefore, looked butt-ugly. So, the new one is made of willow and it looks really pretty! Let’s hope it also lasts as many years as the old one.
We also planted some sunchoke (topinambur), which I got from a working colleague. I hope they like the spot and that we can harvest a few spuds until winter.
Weeding also seems a never-ending story when you have a garden. This time Patrik aligned himself to this task. Well done, darling 😅
On Sunday I took the opportunity and spent the afternoon on my sunlounger, accompanied by my book.
Along the way we continue to watch the development in Italy and its regulations regarding COVID-19 closely. So far it looks good 😎
May 29 2021
We’ve had a really good week in Loano!
Not weather-wise, but we weren’t in Italy for the – anyway hardly existing – sunshine! We wanted to do some important work and get Luna Azzurra ready for our summer vacation!
So, what did we do?
Patrik has connected the solar panels and all five are beautifully working! He can control them via his tablet. Now we have our own little solar power station 🌞 But what a drudgery that was….
We picked-up our new serviced mainsail and I removed the old lettering. Afterwards it was rigged, which was a bit of a moving moment. Now we have a fresh, white mainsail with a new UV protection.
Of course Luna Azzurra got a spa time and we washed her properly from bow to aft! I even polished all stainless steel parts, quite a peaceful work actually!
Unfortunately, we’ll need to haul her out of the water, to clean and polish the hull properly! We hope we can do that soon, the blue looks shameful…
We also bought several meters of sheet, in order to hang our dinghy under the solar panels. Patrik already bought blocks and a single rope clutch from Rutgerson (yes, it had to be Swedish of course). After testing it several times the construction passed, and we are more than happy to finally have a suitable place for our tender.
Then I wanted to try to bake a bread in the gas stove. A foolproof “bread in a pot” seemed the easiest way, and it not only worked, it tasted heavenly!
On Thursday (it was a sunny day) we visited Maldimare Marine Upholstery in Andora. We were welcomed by a very hearty couple, called Claudia and Walter (Gualtiero? Sorry if I’m wrong…). For an hour we discussed the colour of the fabric, thread and backside for our new upholstery in the salon. It’s no rush, but it’s good to know, what options we have.
What did the weather do during our stay? Well, shortly said, it was too cold! A chilly wind made it uncomfy to be outside most of the time. We also had rain and on Wednesday evening and during the night storm with gusts up to 25 knots!
Time flew by and suddenly it was Saturday.
As planned we cleaned Luna Azzurra and late in the afternoon we finally checked into the YCML and moved into our beautiful room. Certainly did we open a bottle of prosecco and congratulated ourselves to a successful week.
In the evening we enjoyed a pizza in the restaurant “All’Aqua Pazza” which lies in the marina.
Tired but happy we returned to our room, watched some Eurovision Song Contest and peacefully fell asleep.
After breakfast the next day, we went to Luna Azzurra to switch off and empty the fridge from its last remains. We also removed the electro cable, since we have our solar panels now!
Shortly after 11 o’clock we were on the road. It took us exactly six hours to arrive at home!
Odin yawned at us when we entered the house, apparently he slept all day long =^.^= .
Luckily, Monday was Whit Monday and we were off. I could do the washing and within no time everything was in order again!
What didn’t we accomplish? Patrik didn’t have the time to install the inverter yet. And my hammock is still in its wrapping….. but that will be changed first thing after we return in July! 😉