Marina Life.
First and foremost we would like to take this opportunity (get me all lah de dah) to wish all you bloggers a Merry very Christmas. As you can see the party here has already started!!

Just a quick essay to let you know how we’re spending our days now that we’re in the marina. 

Marina life is shall we say,very social. Barbecues still take place on Sundays and I’m sorry to rub it in but, it’s still warm enough to wear shorts most of the time. Last week we had a Christmas party barbecue which was excellent with a capital ‘E’. 

A couple of weeks ago we had a curry night which was a jolly jape. A local taverna provided the venue and bar. Each boat contributed a curry or accompaniment. The crew of Stella Maris made the rice (not much you can do wrong with that) we also provided a little raita style dish which involved myself and Captain Miles chopping tomatoes, onions and cucumbers. Bloggers I think I can safely say we chopped like we’ve never chopped before. 

We’ve taken part in our first progressive dinner, now for those of you not in the know, I’ll explain how it works. You’ll need to concentrate as this could get confusing. There were nine boats taking part and each boat made either a starter, main course or dessert. You didn’t know who was coming to dinner and you only found out where you are going just before the event.

Thankfully (for us and our guests) we were asked to make a starter, as we all know I haven’t quite earned my chef badge yet. I plumped for a  feta and bacon salad. Both Captain M and myself did a double take when I voiced concerns about the combination of feta and bacon being too salty. Am I turning into Nigella Lawson (I think we all know the answer to that one). I digress, four people came to our boat for a scrumptious, if somewhat salty starter (there I go again). 

We then went onto ‘Reckless of Hamble’ for main course with four different people. It was a positive feast (lasagne with homemade pasta, life doesn’t get much better) this was accompanied by good conversation and the now infamous ‘Reckless’ measures of alcohol. By the end of the meal we were fit to burst. But, as they say in for a penny in for a pound, time for dessert!!

We went to our final boat ‘Boudecca’ with another set of diners, despite being full to the gills we managed to force down a delish orange cake and custard, well it’s rude not to. The evening ended with a birthday celebration on another boat ‘Atoraxia’. 

You will be impressed to hear that despite partying till the wee hours, we still managed to drag ourselves from our bed for the Thursday walk. Have I not mentioned the walks? There is this fantastic couple here who are really into walking, each week they go for a walk (or should I say hike) and there’s an open invitation for anyone to join them. There’s usually a crowd of us and the walks vary in difficulty. All I will say is that the Kritsa gorge walk involved a lot of up!! 

Twice a week we have our Greek lessons, one three hour lesson which leaves us brain dead and one two hour lesson which leaves us partially brain dead. There are about eleven of us in the class mostly people from the marina. We are being taught how to read, write and speak it, as you can imagine our poor teacher has her work cut out for her.

We’ve bought two push bikes and cycled to Elounda which involved a big up, followed by a scary down. To get back we then had to go back up the scary down which was now a big up and down the previous up, which had also changed into a scary down. Did you follow that? Crete is very hilly no that is an understatement it is mountainous, so we need to choose our routes with care. 

We’ve been up into the mountains with new found friends and visited the Lasithi plateau and the Diktaen caves (birthplace of Zeus).

One Saturday afternoon we took part in a treasure hunt. Scattered around the town were people from the marina, clutching their instructions, furtively whispering and scurrying off down alley ways, in our case only to be seen returning five minutes later, as we’d gone the wrong way!!

Oh I almost forgot, in between times we are trying to do work on the boat. We have compiled a list (I do like lists, so satisfying when you get to cross things off, not experienced that yet) and it’s a long one. One of the problems is getting the parts you need. Another problem is that a job that you think may take half a day often turns into one that takes a whole lot longer. You can be halfway through one job and then find that something else goes wrong. Like the day Captain M broke the toilet. Although, the way he tells it, it was my nagging that led to us having a broken toilet. You’ll be pleased to know that the toilet situation has now been rectified. 

Captain M has now experienced a haircut in a shower cubicle. You really should try it sometime, very liberating! He has also been for the occasional run and there is even talk of him buying a tennis racket. Is the Woodbury champ about to make a comeback?

On Christmas eve we are going to Eddie’s boat (the cute Jack Russell) for dinner. Then on Crimbo day, lunch is in the yacht club. Each boat is helping to prepare the feast, we’ve been given the very important job of making the fruit salad, more chopping right up our street! The crew of Moli have found themselves in charge of a turkey!! 

Our chums on ‘Reckless’ and some other people in the marina are going back to Blighty for Christmas. Here’s wishing you a merry one!

Well I’m going to finish now as I’m starting to bore myself.

Stella Maris and her crew hope you all have a fantastic Christmas and New Year.

Love & tinsel 

Captain Miles breaker of toilets & Karen the nag XX

P.S Quick update on laundry situation, it’s now under lock and key something to do with the Albanians!!
Sunday, 17 December 2006