Yesterday was a busy day for all the Little Shippers taking part in the Historic Croatia Rally. A few had arrived on Friday - including Paul Banks and Moira (who very ably assisted me with the Rally preparations) who came onboard for drinks and a quick update. Tim and Ann Bizzey appeared at 11am on Saturday having not eaten for about eighteen hours, to be followed by our other participants (save one absent through illness) all with broad smiles, but mostly also with bags under the eyes! Tiredness was quickly overcome and the efficient Dalmatia Charters briefers got going with the hand overs of our six charter sailing yachts (Steve Midgley was picking up his motor yacht in Split) . The boats easily met expectations. Meanwhile, the crew of "the Dream" (of Osprey that is) went off on various forays. I went to meet Anamaria of the Callebotta restaurant to check on arrangements, agree seating plans and so on. The rest joined me (including Basia - not Basha as I spelt her name onomatopoeically in the last blog) for lunch - I had a delicious carpaccio of fishes! As, I think, had Ann when she and Tim joined us.
Then it was time to return to the Dream - fully dressed overall plus battle flag and giant burgee - to welcome everyone and have a quick "skirl" of the pipes before the skippers decamped for the Rally Briefing. Hank, (one of the Corinthians' fleet captains crewing with David Hornbach), his wife and I even managed to fit in first Mass of Sunday on the way, with the nuns of St Nicholas convent - a 10th Century foundation, still in their original location: very moving.
No howlers having been discovered at the Briefing, we went through to the Calebotta's garden for dinner. I particularly enjoyed the delicious red Plavac wine; but the whole meal was just as good as I expected. An excellent start.
So, this morning, Sunday 11th September, after an 0800 rally radio call on channel 72, the Dream was off to smooth the path to our next adventure- over a sea that would have done the ancient mariner proud.
Still, 6 knots under power will while the miles away quite quickly!
Above: Marina Palmizana at 8.00 am today, Monday
Hvar Fortress from our special water taxi, on the way from Marina Palmizana to dinner at the Lucullus restaurant.
Looking back towards Hvar en route towards Korcula