At last, here we go ! In the last article, I was talking about last year, now it’s time to tell you how it’s been on Øya for Raquel and myself for the past few weeks .
3 months of silence on the blog and 7 months for my YouTube channel. This is probably too much, but it doesn’t rhymes with procrastination. Things to do are never missing on board when sailing while working!
The sea spares no one. We cast off as planned on April 27, the paint is not quite dry and there is still some furniture to build, just that. Anyway we no longer have the choice: it is 9:30 pm, the night is obviously dark, and someone has booked our place in the port in two and a half hours. This is the last deadline that the port granted us.
Raquel seems happy. We pass the large dyke that protects Palma de Mallorca from the winter swell and Øya begins to come alive for the first time in months. 50 cm of swell is little, but with the engine it suffices to make the boat roll. We anchor in front of the port, in front of the magnificent St. Mary’s Cathedral, partly restored and reconfigured by Gaudi. We are exhausted by our last day of preparations.
Raquel says nothing : a proof that she is sick!
The next day, we reach a nice anchorage at Portals Vells, a nice little cove that in this mid-spring seems to be the perfect place to spend the night. No bowl, a land breeze rises and Øya begins to oscillate, facing the swell entering the anchorage. I sleep well, but she does not close the eye of the night. We have breakfast on a rock, in front of Øya. Its bow plunges into the hollow of the waves and then rises until showing us the beginning of its keel before starting again. What a bad captain I am… This anchorage is cursed: if it was pitching this time, it was rolling last year, during our second date!
We raise the anchor and cross the bay of Palma to reach the delightful anchorage of Cala Pi, where finally the water grovels and becomes crystal blue.
Colour are starting to come back on Raquel’s face : she lives again!
Cala en Borgit in Mallorca, view from the sky
I have a drone
Passionated by whatever is flying since a long time, I did not resist the temptation of buying a drone.
As you can see, these picturess are beautiful and I enjoyed taking them… until the moment I was forced to climb into a tree to recover this damn flying and ultra-polluting computer ! The tree was leaning over a rock that overlooks the water of Cala Mitjana (Mallorca), about 12m high. I know this because we tried for long hours to bring down the damn drone by shaking the pine with a lanyard (a rope) this long. Finally we kindly asked a ladder to a gardener of some family house, which wealth was based on mining. Only then was I able to climb and get the drone back.
Heading for Menorca
Our road map is quite simple: we bypass Mallorca from the south to reach Menorca. The weather is both restrictive and nice with us.
We avoid bad weather by staying a few nights at the ports of the Colonia de Sant Jordi, then Porto Cristo. Then, heading to Menorca! The crossing begins with the engine before the wind decides to help us. We even finished with the spinnaker to reach the north coast of Menorca at nightfall.
Opposite: Arrival in Menorca with the spinnaker !
Madeleine de Proust and damn Honda
I spent a month and a half in Menorca last year, and I hadn’t been to the north of the island.
This time we had the perfect window, it was summer during spring!
First Cala Morells, a beautiful cove overcrowned by beautiful white villas, then Cala Algaiarens where I was able to put in its place a couple of rude Germans. Me on my small pityful sailboat, them on their big boat with a tender garage.
I rediscover this wild coast with gray, yellow, red rocks dotted with vegetation still green from the spring rains. All along the coast, I have distant memories that come back to me. Proust’s madeleine had struck me on the south coast, and it is the same on the north coast.
Here and there I see the Quartz, my parents’ boat, its black tender burning in the sun with smells of rubber and gasoline. We snorkeled in Cala Pregonda with the Dreiskis.
I try to fish. In vain.. I reduce my ambition and simply try to approach fishes. I see two sea breams keaving away, as if they were making fun of me. Even today, Raquel is waiting for her fish to cook…
Pasta does fit the bill.
We reach Mahon and stay four nights anchored to a floating pontoon, avoiding the mistral blowing at sea.
Short walk in Algaiarens
I take the opportunity to contact Honda and give them my tender engine for maintenance operations, so things will be well done and we will have optimized the time spent there. Fate will decide otherwise, but these details are discussed in this article.
Mahon is a city in which history looks quite special. It is located at the bottom of a fjord, which makes it possible to shelter an entire naval fleet. This would explain in particular why the English took possession of Minorca. Intrigued, we sign up for a guided tour to learn a little more.
After a short stop to the sanitary facilities located no less than 1.5 km from the floating pontoon, the engine that has just come out of overhaul does not restart. We’re on Friday evening. So we must row and cancel the guided tour … This time, I’m repairing myself.
We leave Mahon, meet charming anchorage neighbors, I catch not a fish but a drone that another guy lost in the sea and we leave for the south coast.
Time is running out, bad weather is setting in, so we don’t hang around to reach Ciutadella where Raquel’s mother join us for the weekend.
The tender engine fails again, I repair again…
My best fishing in Menorca
Anyway: Raquel is feeling better !