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The Ionian September 2012 Volume 3. Issue 7 COMPLIMENTARY/∆ΩΡΕΑΝ Please recycle: give to a friend or neighbour when finished.

We are sailing, home again Page 8

To the Galaxy and beyond Page 6

Grand old lady Page 12

Children drawn to dolphin conservation Page 11

Autumn is time for herbs Page 10

The art of having guests Page 5

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2 The Ionian September 2012

The Ionian Contact us: Email: Website:

Fair seas and following wind...

September has always been a somewhat sad month for me. Summer is nearly over, school back in session, the slight chill in the air at night remindFounding Publisher: Justin Smith ing me of the winter to come. But in the Ionian, there is plenty of sunshine Publisher: Barbara Molin left and many of us look forward to the cooler weather after the summer heat Managing Editor: Barbara Molin wave. In fact, many of our visitors purposely go home for the summer and Editor: Martin Stote return in the autumn. And so in this issue we say hello and good bye at the Advisory Board: Yannis Dimopoulos same time and whether you are just arriving or leaving we have a story for you. Ryan Smith In our line up this month we have Barbara de Machula who has been busy entertaining guests all Ian Molesworth summer and doing a bit of tsipouro tasting, with what else but, The art of having guests on page 5. Layout: Barbara Molin Some guests to the Ionian come and go each season, while others, for one reason or another have Printing: Graphic Arts to go back home permanently. In We are sailing, home again on page 8, Martin Stote wraps up his Advertising: Barbara Molin three part interview with one such couple, Laurel and Bill Cooper, the celebrated authors of their Subscriptions: Barbara Molin book, Sell up and sail, who sadly had to finally end their 36 year, 100,000 nm. odyssey. Ian Molesworth also writes about leaving, at least temporarily, aboard his starship Galaxy with his You can download The Ionian free as a 77 year-old mother Eve as trusty crew. Read his humorous account laced with practical advice in To PDF document from our website: the Galaxy and beyond on page 6. We continue with the second part in our series of articles supporting the Ionian Dolphin Project in Children drawn to dolphin conservation by Martin Stote on page 11. If your child has drawn a picThe Ionian is published monthly. ture of or written an essay about a dolphin or whale as a result of the Ionian Dolphin Project, we Published on the last day before each month, welcome you to email them to us for a chance to see them in print in our October issue. Open to approximately. Publication is for children up to and including 14 years. Please send the essays as document or imbedded in your email informational purposes only. and the pictures as JPG attachment to Although The Ionian has made every effort If you have ever driven from Vliho to Sivota on Lefkada island in summer, you probably have been to ensure the accuracy of the information overwhelmed by the scent of sage growing on the road sides. Vicky Iliopoulou tells us in Autumn is contained in this publication, the publisher time for herbs on page 10, how to preserve the plentiful and aromatic herbs native to this area. cannot be held responsible for any errors or We also would like to wish a warm welcome to Lee Gillman, a first time contributor to The Ionian, omissions it may contain. The opinions who tells us about Grand old lady on page 12, a classic old schooner, Rhea that she and her husband expressed by the contributors are not found anchored next to them in Vliho Bay. necessarily held by the publisher. On our cover this month, we have a stunning photo of what I initially thought to be a church but Published in Canada. turned out to be a house door in a narrow lane in the village of Assos on Kefalonia island, surrounded by bougainvilleas and skilfully captured by Lies van’t Net. Thank you to all of you who Cover Photo: House door in Assos, Kefalo- participated in our 24 hour cover shot competition and please feel free to send in more of your best nia by Lies van’t Net. To purchase any of our photos and stories about the Ionian. Our third annual calendar competition is also in progress - please check our website, for contest rules and more information. photographs or to submit your own for a cover shot consideration please email us at: Enjoy reading... ~~~_/) Barbara Molin

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confiscated the TV remote control, we decided we liked him more when his lovely wife was with him. She keeps him under control. Nevertheless, we love him to bits, and he ate well so my cooking didn't go to waste. And then we had Pete's daughter, a lovely spirited young woman who is 20 years old, and suddenly girl power took over our house! Poor Peter didn't know what hit him, with two women telling him how to behave and not to behave, when to take a shower and have a shave, and demanding his full attention and care. But the main thing was that having such a dynamic woman around was a lot of fun and we felt empty when she left. And some other dear friends came bringing laughter, and good times, and warm evenings were enlivened with cold wine and good food. But as well as the wanted guests, there are also the unwanted ones. After a while you learn to recognize them, the casual friends who seem to become bosom pals the moment you move to Greece and finish your guest house. The best guests are the ones that fit in, take their own beers from the fridge and occasionally buy a few beers back. They take their dirty plates to the sink and water the plants in the guesthouse garden without asking. The bad ones wait till you serve them, and then complain the beer is not cold enough. They suddenly announce that they are strict vegetarians just when you have roasted a nice chicken. They are allergic to bread or milk, or both, or they cannot stand the sun, (so why come to Greece?) or they have a sudden outbreak of sentimentality over the country they come from. Some are on a tight budget, while never sensing that your budget might be tight too, and some decide suddenly that they want to buy land and a house like you, near you, and ask how you are doing with your work and maybe they can do the same. So you drive them round to all the most beautiful places you know, and they say, yes, it was nice, but they think that actually, upon reflection, they prefer somewhere else in Europe like Portugal or Spain. And so we sigh a big, discreet sigh, we ride it out, and resume our life, our wonderful beautiful life. It may not be the easiest life, we may struggle from time to time. But we think that where we live is Paradise. And at least we are not anyone else’s guests. Barbara de Machula is an artist and a writer originally from Amsterdam, who lives on a farm on a mountain near a monastery near Palairos..

The art of having guests Barbara de Machula with people, and we even made a cute guest house especially for visitors, and particularly for those who like a nice glass of cool wine, or uddenly the tourists arrive and take over, even a bottle, so that they can stay overnight and our little village is transformed into a merry and not have to drive, and enjoy our starry sky and the milky way. go round; people eating souvlaki and pita, people with lobster-red skin, wearing bikinis, slathered in sun lotion. They are everywhere, in the little back streets, by the sea, in the sea, on the sea, and the only way I can escape is to retreat up my mountain. But sometimes the tourists won't let me because their huge camper vans block the narrow streets, block the crossroads and all the traffic freezes around them and their bulky structures. Sometimes they have bicycles lashed on the back, or even scooters and one time I saw them with a little car towed behind. When I manage to find my peaceful The tourists arrive hideaway, and the afternoon heat forces me to have a nap by the fan, or when I have just had my midday cold shower, the faint roar of an This summer we were blessed with several engine on our dirt road alerts me that people are wonderful guests, and many good times. It coming. When guests come, I am usually a happy bunny. I love to share our beautiful place started with the two angels who took care of my mum, two ladies, like me in the golden years around 50, but also like me, often behaving like teenagers. When I drove them in our little jeep to some of the great places around here, I saw the beauty of our village and the surrounding landscape through their eyes. With those ladies, I made homemade liqueurs from tsipouro (a Greek brandy), like amaretto and limoncello. Of course that involved a lot of tasting too, and luckily we made something like a big gallon to last a few days. When the two angels left, the house was suddenly very quiet, and dirty too, as the angels were big on cleaning, and left my house tidier than it had ever been before. Suddenly we were back to our old routine, of dirty socks left everywhere, and cobwebs on the bookshelf. Our next guest was a lonely cyclist, who had cycled his way through Europe, who we knew from way back. This time he was on a trip by himself with his bike and a tent. Usually he comes with his wife in a camper van which he fitted out himself. After some heavy political discussions (about Making tsipouro where things are going in Greece) and he had


Time for tasting

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Switzerland is £29 – about €36 - and the Italian tolls as far as Venice are about €50. I got out the Satnav and plotted a course off the toll roads, around Switzerland and via Austria, Germany and Belgium rather than France. The difference in distance was about 15% so it was well worth a try. This trip would echo a Star Trek adventure, with the Enterprise striving to reach, if not the final frontier, at least several European checkpoints. Perhaps I should also admit at this point that although I am a 53 year-old IT manager, I have always been a bit of a driving nut. I once drove from Cape Town to Johannesburg to Sun City for a Queen concert, back to Johannesburg and back to Cape Town over a weekend (Friday 17:00 to Sunday afternoon-a little over 3,200 kilometres). My best ever European run was Brindisi to Calais, 2,000 kilometres in 24 hours. Eve and I set off from Preveza at 1 a.m. on a Friday morning. The 80 Ian Molesworth kilometre drive to Igoumenitsa would ©Miriam Janssen take about an hour but rain was predicted beginning at about 03:00 so we wanted to get there before that. The something with which to wipe the windscreen. rain started as we parked up at the ferry office. We decided that a pair of her trademark yellow hat do you do with an 11 year-old car We slept in the car and bought a ticket on the Marigolds would suffice. that you have been using for months as a We would, of course, top up the washer bottle 7:00 ferry to Venice. Twenty six hours later we rolled off the ferry storage shed in a Greek boatyard, an old banger with boiling water, not for the screen you ready for the 1,450 kilometre drive to Calais. with 100,000 miles on the clock, dodgy understand but to keep the Marigold operator Heading east out of Venice (A), we left the A4 windscreen wipers, and which would struggle on the roof at a comfortable temperature. A to fetch £900 back in the UK? Drive it the flask of hot tea would supplement this heating just before Vicenza and headed via Dueville on 1,500 kilometres home, of course. system. But in the end we decided that simply the A31. Getting this far cost us €7.40 in tolls but we were now off the toll system. We drove I say, ‘of course,’ because the car did have stopping when it rained would be preferable. certain mitigating features. My Ford Galaxy Anticipating the reaction of the police forces in on to Arsiero (B). The climb up to Arsiero and descent into Trento was spectacular, some MK ll is the 2.3l petrol version. It still drove the various European countries on our route really beautiful mountain views. There were well, had tons of space, managed 30 m.p.g. on soon wiped the smiles off our faces. toned and sickeningly fit cyclists everywhere. the open road with a following We checked out directions with a wind, boasted four new tyres bloke who must have been 50 that cost around £125 each, a This trip would echo a Star Trek years old, and was about 1500 tow bar and the ghia spec extras. above sea level on a little I have to admit that it had a adventure, with the Enterprise striving metres mountain road and cranking up certain sentimental value the hill. I think he was fitter at 50 too. Because it is white, and has to reach, if not the final frontier, at than I was at 16. an ET registration plate, it is On to Bolzano (C) via the affectionately known as the least several European checkpoints. Brenner pass using the Via Starship Enterprise. And it had Brannero which runs parallel to got me to Greece at the end of last season, so the toll highway. The weather ahead looked why shouldn’t it get me back again? fine but I logged in to an app called ‘rain alert’ Reconnecting the battery and trying the But there was the problem of the windscreen on my mobile phone. This gives an up-to-date ignition got a slow and strained turnover, but wipers. A poorly-designed steel to phosphorsnapshot of precipitation radars across Europe the car started after about five seconds. The bronze bush with no greasing points and no maintenance schedule pretty much guaranteed omens were good. Two tyres were completely that if left unused, the wipers were going to die flat and half the dashboard was hanging down following a replacement of the tank side fuel on you. It first happened to our Galaxy after I left it standing in our driveway for three months pump and associated relay on our last trip down (I didn’t mention that, did I?). one winter. I managed to free up the spindles I took the wheels off and drove them to the and get the unit going again, thus avoiding a garage for new valves using the van I’d driven £500 bill (yes, you read it right). down in early last year. A couple of days of The discussion amongst friends at Panos using the Galaxy cleaned off the rusty sections Tavrena over dinner a few nights before our on the brake disks and a quick brush removed trip from Aktio Marine to the UK had us in stitches as we discussed our ideas for handling most of the dust that had managed to coat the lack of windscreen wipers and any potential everything. We were ready to attempt our bash rain. My 77 year-old mother Eve was travelling across Europe. We loaded the car with a few things from the with me, and my first suggestion was that she walked in front of the car with a red flag so that boat that we wanted at home. We were working I could see where I was going. (You understand on the principle that if we had to walk away from the car we shouldn’t take anything that this had to be the way it was done since mum was irreplaceable or too valuable. We wanted does not have a valid driver’s licence ) to get across Europe at a modest pace to give But as we sank more of the house red wine, the old girl - the car, not Eve - an easy run and the plan became embellished somewhat. The keep costs to a minimum. Tolls in France can Galaxy has roof bars fitted as standard, so it What are Mums for? Eve cleaning Ian’s didn’t take long for someone to suggest lashing set you back €150 depending on the route you follow. An annual motorway Vignette for boat wearing her trusty Marigolds. my mum to the roof and arming her with

To the Galaxy and beyond


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and would give us warning, we hoped, of bad weather ahead. A few kilometres from Bolzano we used the toll highway for a short distance into the town - €2. We drove due north out of Bolzano, where we saw a lovely little farmers’ market, via a hamlet called Sarentino. We missed the tolls from Bolzano to Innsbruck (D), but at the snow line at 1,500 metres there were barriers across the road and signs to say the pass was closed due to snow. The rain alert app looked reasonably clear of any precipitation, so being the adventurous type I decided to push on but only as far as the blockage to see how bad it was. We topped the pass at 2,211 metres above mean sea level with wind blowing snowdrifts across the road which was restricted to one small lane, but it was clear and free of ice. On to Innsbruck, then Kempten (F) via the Fernn pass (E) ( Road 189 off the E60 out of Innsbruck), Stuttgart (G), Karlsruhe (H), Staarbrucken (I), and Luxembourg (J). Now we were within striking distance of the channel, and we telephoned ahead and booked a ferry ticket. The rain alert looked bad. A big cumulonimbus was hanging over the Calais to Dunkirk area and threatened to stop play. We pulled in to a coffee shop to consider our options, and as we drank coffee an avenue opened up that was clear of rain. There followed a dash to Mons, Dunkirk and the ferry home. (A copy of this route is on Google maps at ) The total distance travelled was 1,400 kilometres. We

spent about €214, or about £175 on petrol, and a total of €9 on tolls. The total cost of the ferry from Igoumenitsa to Venice was €340 which covered one adult ticket, one senior ticket, the car, and an inside cabin. Meals and drinks on board the ferry were very expensive and totalled about €85. We took a cool box of sandwiches and drinks with us in the car, so that we only spent a few euros on the road on coffee. Even so, the entire road trip cost me about €640, or about £522. But you have to balance that against the cost and availability of private storage in Aktio, the convenience of having a vehicle to run errands during the season, a pair of air tickets and the cost of shipping boat bits from and to the UK. (As well as us, the car transported two full suits of sails, lots of redundant boat spares, and all our clothes, probably a total baggage load of 300 kilograms). We left Venice at 10:00 on Saturday and made the 14:00 DFDS ferry at Dunkirk on Sunday. We spent about eight hours stopped for coffee, naps, and petrol, and a one hour stop at 1a.m. in the middle of Germany while a crane hoisted a new bridge span over the highway. Eve said, “After working hard on Ian’s boat, the return journey, with the ever-present threat of rain, turned into an adventure, especially as we included the Penne pass. Looking up at the snow-clad peaks I reassured myself that this was a PASS and couldn't possibly be leading over the top. I was wrong. And, like any event that includes a frisson of danger, safe negotiation brings elation. The real adventure however would have been riding on top of the Galaxy wearing my

Ian and his Galaxy

trusty Marigolds.” The old Seafrance ferries have been totally refurbished and now operate as DFDS ferries out of Dunkirk, fare £39 one way, but book the day before at least. They operate a nice scheme whereby you can check in to the ferry before or the one after the one you’ve booked, and avoid ticket change costs. Otherwise it’s €25 to change your ticket. Mum completed the journey home to Rotherfield, East Sussex, without getting wet. And we may keep the Enterprise as a runabout. Damned good car! Ian’s detailed map of his route as well as driving directions can be found on Google Maps at: Ian Molesworth is an IT expert, tinker, tailor, pilot, sailor, son, husband and dad, who when he is in the Ionian, sails on his Benneteau Oceanis 390, Cariad. He is also on the advisory board of The Ionian. The Ionian welcomes your stories and photos. For more information, check our editorial guidelines on our website: Send your manuscripts and pictures to Also, check our third annual calendar photo competition:

September 2012 The Ionian 7

We are sailing, home again Martin Stote their favourite cruising grounds. Nor the wry humour which made Sell Up and Sail such a good read. Bill calls Faraway their geriatric boat. They had the hull built in Lowestoft 2006/7, but fitted her out themselves when they were both approaching 80. “She is a nice little boat, 12 metres long, ugly and wide but with a princely galley, every comfort, and lots of handholds. She has now become unashamedly, a pontoon cottage,” says Coopers celebrate diamond Bill. wedding on Orient Express Laurel stresses that her two hip operations have been a success, and she has now thrown away her disabled badge. n February of this year Bill and Laurel “And we can still write,” she said. “And Cooper motored on to a pontoon on the River though my hands are Medway in Rochester, Kent, UK, in their too arthritic to draw any dumpy blue and white 40 ft. steel barge, more, son Ben has Faraway, tied up, and thereby ended a 36 year, given me a tutorial for 100,000 mile odyssey. Adobe Illustrator, if I It was a triumphant moment for the authors of the best selling live-aboard manual Sell Up and can get my head round that I can perhaps do better computer graphics than I do at the Sail, now both 83 years old, for whom the moment.” previous three and a half decades had been They wrote most of Sell Up and Sail while more adventurous than perhaps even they had moored in Port Vathi on Meganisi. The book is ever planned. now in its fifth edition and has sold over 25,000 It was also a kind of surrender, of having to copies in the UK since it was first published in accept that old age and the infirmities which accompany it had achieved what no amount of 1986. It has been published in translation in Sweden, and in the USA by Sheridan House. adverse tides and weather systems ever could, When they first decided to leave the UK in that is, put an end to their gallivanting. Bill’s 1976 on their steel ketch Fare Well, Bill was a eyesight is failing, and he found himself former Lieutenant Commander in the Royal increasingly squinting at charts. Laurel who Navy and a professional navigator turned City suffered from a painful hip deformity since birth, has had two hip replacements in the past gilts broker who was frustrated by his commuter’s lifestyle working as a financial 15 years. advisor to the Harold Wilson government. One But they have lost none of the fierce day instead of boarding the train to London he independence and self-reliance that took them across the Atlantic, along the American eastern returned home and told Laurel that he was going to finish their first boat, the 50 ft. steel seaboard, around the Caribbean, and the Mediterranean, where the Ionian became one of ketch Fare Well, the hull of which had been professionally constructed, but which he had been fitting out at the bottom of the garden, and cut loose. Laurel, then a magistrate and art teacher, and happily settled at home, wasn’t so enthusiastic. She had sailed on the Broads, and had one four week cruise with Bill in the Med under her belt. She also had her hip problem to contend with. In preparation, she learned navigation at a sailing school in Cowes and accompanied friends on coastal and cross Channel sorties. Re-reading the book now, there is one passage which strikes a particularly poignant note, given the Coopers’ return to the UK. “Two occasions I shall miss dreadfully if I ever come ashore. One is the impromptu cruising barbecue, on a beach perhaps, with half a dozen dinghies hauled up on the shingle, and the yachts nodding at anchor a short swim away. The fire is already crackling under many and different grids and grills; bring your own meat or fish, something to drink, and a ‘dish for the table’ that everyone can share. The meal languors deliciously on into the warm afternoon with chat and laughter: memorable days. The other is of wonderful meals for two on board Laurel sailing dinghy Abelike Bay in 2005

after a good day at sea, not in themselves so Epicurean, were it not for the beauty of the day, the good temper of the sea, the satisfaction in our progress, and the sharpness of our hunger.” The Coopers were decidedly sociable animals from the first time they arrived in the Ionian, as their photograph of them partying on a neighbouring yacht in Corfu shows. “That was a memorable party. It was in March of 1978 in Gouvia Bay on Corfu with a couple called Pete and Kate Hunt on board their yacht Angelique,” said Laurel. “It probably set the record for the number of people on a forty foot yacht! But we were all quite experienced and were very careful not to rock the boat.”


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Angelique’s party, Corfu, March 31st 1978

Their description of barbecues on the beach leans heavily on their memories of their parties in Abelike Bay on Meganisi, as two more of the photographs illustrate. They were taken in May 2004, by which time the Coopers were living on their 87 ft Dutch barrage Hosanna. Among the guests that afternoon were David and Janet Mason, and their chihuahuas Tess, Roddy and Jake. The couple have been living in the Ionian on board their 11.5m ketch Nanablu since they arrived in the islands in 1995. They wrote an article for the Easter edition of The Ionian about keeping their dogs on board. “Abeliki Bay barbecues were hard to beat. Nanablu is there somewhere with the dogs,” said Laurel. “Hosanna is dressed overall at the back, and of the three men just in front, Bill is the middle one, facing you. We know Nanablu and are still in touch, if rather infrequently. We had a few memorable pot luck suppers at Lefkas.” In fact, David and Janet are seen sitting on Bill’s left in the photograph of a pot luck supper in the clubhouse at Lefkas Marina. Bill dedicated a section in the book to such a winter at Lefkas. “Some 30 yachts have crews on board, and during the winter days we can be sociable or not, as the fancy takes us,” he wrote. He told how all the live-aboarders communicated by VHF, and met several times a week in the marina clubroom. Pot luck suppers were held once a week, and included

too much on credit.” Laurel said, “It’s all happened before! But it’s sad that Greece is caught in the net. We hope it will pass.” Meanwhile the Coopers are determined not to just live off their memories. Their new life has been pretty eventful since their return to the UK. Their son Ben, 57, now lives just a couple of miles away, and their daughter Shelley, 60, an hour’s drive away. In March the couple visited Venice on the Orient Express to celebrate their diamond wedding anniversary. Bill said, “It was wonderful. Here, on the day, Pot Luck supper, Lefkas Marina we had the traditional letter from the Queen, draught wine “at a price that the Brits can only and a family lunch for eleven at the Yacht dream about.” There were also “Greek lessons, Club. Everyone voted it super cool. Our grandson said it was the best dinner he’d had keep fit classes, and a music group. (Up to six since he was five. He’s eight now. He couldn’t guitars, a banjo, and Laurel’s transatlantic remember what he’d had at five that was so dulcimer.)” David and Janet Mason told The Ionian, “Pot good! “We still live afloat. Faraway is a motor boat luck suppers were one of the many activities and we have found a berth close to the centre of that were organised during our winters in Rochester where we can walk to the station and Lefkas marina in 2001/2 and 2008/9. In the early years marina live-aboards had the use of a shops. There is no point in grieving for the might-have-been.” Laurel said, “I have settled, very large room and up to 28 people participated. The variety of food was always tasty and varied, particularly in the first year or two as we had a wide range of nationalities represented in the marina. “We also tried to make it more interesting by having a 'theme' for each week. Initially we started with national cuisines - French, Chinese and Italian were always favourites - and then we diverged into other areas - vegetarian, party food ( when two people had their birthdays in the same week ), and many others. The themes were a challenge to some of us who maybe hadn't done that kind of cooking before, so the recipe books came out and experimental and it’s nice to see the family so often.” She cooking took place. Having said that, one winter there was one lady who brought an apple pauses, and then admits, “Oh, but I do miss the camaraderie of the cruising life. Bill still pie whatever the theme. And very good they hankers for travel, whatever he may say. We were too. can no longer move on when the laundry comes “At one stage we decided to combine a pot back.” luck supper with a quiz night, but found that They find some aspects of life back in people preferred to talk or even sing and maybe modern Britain frankly baffling, particularly play guitars after their supper, so we held the given the self-sufficient lifestyle they had quiz on another evening. There was one occasion when Laurel Cooper got us all singing grown so used to. “We do not bother with sea shanties. Dogs were welcome at the suppers official health and safety, some examples of which are practically lunatic,” said Bill. “Ships as long as they were kept well away from the are generally exempt from the major stupidities. food until everyone had finished eating and We have always been prudent, and the evidence then they were allowed to wander round a is that, throughout our 98,000 miles of cruising bit. Our chihuahuas usually ended up on over 36 years, visiting 45 different countries, someone's knee.” we have only twice accepted help: being towed There is another passage in the book, written off by two trawlers at the Lefkas Canal, and a eight years ago, which also seems remarkably tow by a Rumanian patrol boat when aground prescient, given Greece’s current economic in the shifting channels of the Danube. situation. “This is not the place to go on about “There are some good types in the nearby the follies of international banking practices except to say that too much of the money being boats, but they never move, and don’t used to finance the consumer boom is money that does not really exist and that its velocity of circulation is getting faster.” Bill said, “I wrote that in 2004. When I left the RN, I became an actuary and specialised in government finance. I became adviser to both Wilson and Callaghan. It was the frustration of dealing with the crises in the early seventies, that made me pack it all in, sell my house, divide the spoils among my children and push off, well away from inter-bank loans and weaselly politicians. “I haven’t studied the details of Greece’s fall from financial grace. I recall that some years ago, Greece bought more BMW cars than any other country in Europe, and nearly all were with borrowed money. The Greeks and their government fell into the same trap as we British and our last Labour government, believing that the boom would last forever. We all consumed

understand cruising. When cruising one is independent, but there are always good fellows of any nationality close by if you need them. It is a genuinely cosmopolitan, classless community totally unconscious of age differences, and a good example of the superior maturity of the seafarer over the politician.” And there will be more books. Bill is writing a novel about a submarine disaster, but has yet to sign up with a publisher for it. Laurel said, “We have wonderful memories, and your articles are making us relive them. We would love to try again now we are officially in Yachting Monthly’s top 25 Cruising Heroes. We have so many stories yet to tell.” Finally, what would they say to any couple dreaming of pursuing a life like theirs? “Any time is a good time if that is what you wish to do,” said Bill. “It’s a big decision, so a man and wife must agree. It is so much a shared effort that over time mutual respect is much increased, provided you survive the first three months. Quite often, if or when doubts arise, it is the distaff side that wants to go on.” Laurel said, “I think it’s harder now, boats are a lot more expensive and have fancier toys. And Brussels has decreed so many new regulations. Faraway is just under 12 metres in order to avoid some of them. And yes, there’s a lot to get away from in UK! What would my advice be? Go on, do it. We’ve met very few who have regretted it. Some have to return to the rat race from time to time, but they always come back.” Pictures supplied by and used with kind permission of Bill and Laurel and Adlard Coles Nautical. Passages from Sell Up and Sail reproduced with kind permission of Adlard Coles Nautical. Sell Up and Sail (ISBN 9780713674033) is available, priced £19.99, from Adlard Coles Nautical at , from all good bookshops, and from Amazon. The Coopers’ other books are, Watersteps through France; Watersteps around Europe; Sail into the Sunset; A Spell in Wild France; Back Door to Byzantium; Sell Up and Cruise the Inland Waters. Those which are out of print may be available second hand via Amazon. The link to the Adlard Coles Nautical books home page is: details/9780713674033 The Adlard Coles Nautical 2012 brochure, carrying details of their many maritime books and how to order them, is available from

Barbecue Abelike Bay May 2004

September 2012 The Ionian 9

©B. Roth

Autumn is time for herbs Vicky Iliopoulou A utumn is in the air, which reminds me that this is also a time for harvesting and preserving culinary herbs such as rosemary, oregano, garlic chives and lemon balm. Herbs have been used in cooking for centuries, not only because they provide their distinctive flavours to foods, but also because of their preservative qualities. For example, according to herb expert Conrad Richter of Richters Herbs in Goodwood, Ontario, thyme was valued for its essential oil called thymol, and was used to preserve meats before the advent of refrigeration. You might not think so, but autumn is a perfect time to plant a herb garden. Hardy perennial herbs such as oregano, parsley, thyme, chives and garlic chives as well as lavender, lemon balm and mint can be planted now for a head start on spring. If you already grow herbs, now is the time to harvest them to make herb vinegars and oils. To extend the season by a month or three, you can also bring potted herbs indoors - but be careful not to bring insect pests with them. Be warned that your herbs won’t be happy growing indoors unless you can provide them with enough artificial light to supplement their need

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for at least four hours of direct sunlight a day. The best way to do this is to place them in the brightest (and coolest) window in the house. Cool temperatures slow down the growth of herbs to compensate for reduced light levels - the combination of heat and low light means death for most herbs. Then install a Gro-Light, or a high-intensity lamp to give the plants the boost they need. Experiment also by making your own lavender oil and enjoy its unique properties such as relaxation, deep and essential hydration for your skin and reassure a quick recovery from the sun and the sea. Vicky Iliopoulou and her husband Marios Fotiadis own a Herb Shop in Lefkada. Vicky has 20 years of experience in Aromatherapy and Aesthetics. He has also worked as a Spa Manager in Athens. Herbs and Spices Shop, Iron Politechneiou 32, Lefkada theprinceof Tel: 26450 26230

Lavender Oil INGREDIENTS: • 1/2 litre grape seed oil • 5 bunches fresh lavender METHOD: • In a medium sized pot, bring water to a boil with a bit of salt. Fill another pot with ice water. • Place lavender in the boiling water for 3 minutes. Remove from hot water and add to pot of ice water. This blanching process allows the lavender to keep its bright colour . • Remove lavender from pot and squeeze out excess water. • In a blender, add grape seed oil and lavender. Blend at medium speed for five minutes. • Allow oil to stand for 12 hours then, • Pour through a coffee filter. Place fresh lavender sprigs inside pretty bottles, pour filtered oil into the bottles and cork to seal.

project, while giving them valuable information on how to minimize the potential disturbance they may cause to the animals when approaching them. “He added, “We would stress to those of you willing to collaborate the importance of adding, whenever possible, photographs or video. The Ionian Dolphin Project has been working for more than 20 years to ensure the long-term viability of dolphin species in the coastal waters of the eastern Ionian Sea. It offers a point of reference in this important field for scientists from all over the world. Research by the Tethys Research Institute supports dolphin conservation through scientific research and regular surveys at sea. The results are published in scientific literature to support marine biodiversity conservation. Joan said, “Recreational boating around the Ionian islands has steadily increased during the last decade. Such a large fleet regularly cruising Ionian waters offers a huge potential for the recording of valuable dolphin data, but also calls for the design if adequate education and awareness initiatives addressed to boat users.” He added, “Please, BE DOLPHIN SMART and prove that you care about the conservation of the Mediterranean Sea and its most charismatic creatures.” The following is the essentials of the IDP’s code of conduct to help boat users avoid unnecessary disturbance to whales and dolphins. ● Stay back 50 metres from dolphins (100m from whales) ● Move away cautiously if dolphins/whales show signs of disturbance (sudden change in behaviour) ● Always put your engine in neutral when dolphins/whales are near ● Refrain from feeding, touching, or swimming with wild dolphins ● Teach others to be DOLPHIN SMART “From now on, when you are sailing the beautiful waters of the Ionian Sea, remember - YOU can help us! If you come across dolphins or whales, we want to know about it. Reporting a sighting online will only take a few minutes, but it will provide us invaluable information about the distribution of cetacean species in the area, and will help us to identify key habitats for their conservation. “The collaboration from our friends from Sunsail (also offering logistical support), Neilson Holidays, Sail Ionian and Sailing Holidays has been key for its success. We welcome the participation of Island Sailing, another charter-sailing flotilla company that heard from us thanks to the article featured in the latest issue of The Ionian. Other companies willing to collaborate can contact us. KG medmarinas management group, owners of Marina Lefkas and Gouvia Marina, the latter in Corfu, has also offered its collaboration to help spread the word among their clients.” To contact the IDP and to report your sightings online visit Other useful links: Tethys Research Institute: Thalassa Project: Whale and Dolphin Conservation Society (WDCS):

Children drawn to dolphin conservation Martin Stote

Children are learning the importance of the conservation

of dolphins and whales in the Ionian through a major new educational initiative which is taking its message to private and holiday boat users and into local classrooms. The Ionian Dolphin Project (IDP) launched a new website early this year on which sailors and their families are being invited to record any sightings of dolphins and whales, and to log pictures and videos of them, as part of a ground-breaking initiative to build a more accurate picture of their distribution and habitats in Ionian waters. IDP researchers have also been visiting schools in Lefkas and Vonitsa in the Amvrakikos Gulf explaining to pupils the work they are doing and the extent to which the numbers of dolphins and whales in the area have declined because of increased human encroachment. Leaflets and a video documentary have been provided by WWF-Greece. An almost real-size inflatable bottlenose dolphin given to the IDP in 2008 by the Whale and Dolphin Conservation Society (WDCS) has also been a great success among the younger audience. The project’s work was highlighted last month during a Dolphin Day Celebration in Lefkas, organized with the collaboration of LAWS, the Lefkas Animal Welfare Society, when some of the drawings produced by local school children were put on display. That month The Ionian magazine also started to publicise the venture, and four flotilla companies agreed to distribute the magazine to their clients at the start of each flotilla and bareboat charter. Since then a fifth company has asked to join the initiative. The IDP has produced a species recognition chart, and a code of conduct for yachtsmen with recommendations to be followed when close to whales and dolphins, both of which will be published in The Ionian for the rest of this season. This combined initiative on land and sea is hoped to lay the foundations with the next generation for continuing awareness of the need for dolphin and whale conservation. Brad Trusler, Tui Marine Operations Manager in Greece at the Sunsail Vounaki Marina in Paleros said, “Joan’s Species identification sheet and the article in the Ionian magazine (both of which are on every yacht) has generated much interest amongst our charterers, especially during the school holidays with our younger generation of sailors. It has added another dimension to the passages between ports as they are now constantly on the ‘look out’ for dolphins.” Joan Gonzalvo, Programme Manager for the IDP, said, “The important thing is to encourage the future generations to think, to wonder, to care about our marine environment and the beautiful creatures that inhabit the Greek seas. Dolphins and whales are flagship species; charismatic animals that embody the sea and what we like about the sea “Since the launching of our new website in May, we have had 30 dolphin reports, which I consider a success considering that this is the first year. Hopefully more will follow. This is an unprecedented initiative in this area to encourage sailors to collaborate in a dolphin conservation

September 2012 The Ionian 11

old girl at 110 tonnes, it can only be imagined what speed she attained with her first 22 h.p. engine fitted in 1922. Her weight must be in part due to her composition of twin skinned 6 cm. oak on oak planking! David informed us that Rhea had undergone several changes in her 112 years. She was originally commissioned on 18th June 1900 as “Kjersten” in Nyborg, Denmark, sailing out of Copenhagen to the Baltic Sea carrying rocks. Very romantic. Twenty two years later, fitted with the aforementioned engine, she had her name changed to “Anne,” and twelve years after that to “Martha,” along with various other modifications. After this, her past is a little murky. She was rechristened “Julianne Von Holt” in the 1950’s then in the 1960’s or 70’s she finally became “Rhea.” And here is me thinking changing a ship’s name was supposed to be unlucky! Why and how she came to end up in the sorry state David found her in is a mystery, but she is now fully restored and sailing as she was meant to, giving enjoyment to friends, clients, and the rest of us spectators or to give us our proper name, Lee Gillson paparazzi! David and Penny charter Rhea from Croatia and Turkey and she sails the Mediterranean area. In bidding David adieu we parted with our June issue of “The Ionian,” which he hadn’t been aware of until our conversation. Maybe ponder the viability of teaching an old dog new he’ll write his own article one day. In the meantime, we’re looking forward to seeing tricks……… o, there we were, at anchor off the Rhea again under sail. Wonder where she’ll be Speaking of which, next morning, He Who on 18th June 2100? tavernas on the east side of Vliho Bay. It being Must Be Obeyed was making his purchase of our daily bread at the lovely bakery in the back You can find more information about Rhea at: a Sunday we were just returning from our street of Vliho and met up with David Ross and Sunday Roast at the excellent J.D’s in Nidri only to find our beloved tub totally eclipsed by his partner Penny, Rhea’s owners, who were Lee Gillson sails in the Ionian with her a 100 foot leviathan from a bygone age, called similarly engaged. This resulted in David husband John and their Cocker spaniel Gertie, telling us something of his yachts’ history a Rhea. Something like that gives you pause for on board their Nauticat 33 ketch, Relaxis. thought, that thought being “they’re too close!” little later. He bought her in 1989, rescuing and followed by the second, “bang goes the her from her underwater berth. view of the sun setting over the mountain At that time she was a ketch, and behind Vliho”. Penny made new sails for her. However, once safely back on board, I amused myself by taking a couple of photos of Now, being no stranger to sewing on board with my trusty 1925 this Edwardian schooner. We were tickled to Singer sewing machine, I was see the ship’s dog, Sam, a Springer spaniel, leap into the water and take a lone swim around suitably awed and respectful of Rhea, much as our happy hound, of the Cocker her achievement. Since then however, Rhea has been restored variety, does around our more modestly proportioned vessel. However, Sam had a trick to her original rig, as can be seen from the pictures, with all mod up his paw that Gertie only dreams of - he cons and a 245 horse power hauled himself out of the water and back on board by negotiating a side ladder set at a slight engine which clips her along at a pleasant 7 knots when there is angle and then plonked himself athwart the not enough wind. Being a heavy gunwhales to be showered off. I started to

Grand old lady


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The Ionian September 2012  

Leading, glossy, travel, yachting and lifestyle magazine for the Ionian part of Greece. Our mission is to promote tourism and yachting in th...

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