I have a picture hung up in Eos, showing a Caribbean scene, with a palm tree and under it, a boat. The caption “Still working on de boat” seems to epitomise the last few years- but I now see an end to it. Well, more or less.

We left her in Messolonghi over the winter. Mike (I) started in April with a big blitz on the existing varnish, which all had to come off to be replaced by Woodskin, a new product from International Paints. We shall see how this works over the next few years, but if it doesn’t blister then that would be a big improvement. Varnish and hot sun don’t mix very well.

Also we have the normal external coat of paint, which I do, and the antifouling, which I sublet to save my back. The former included splining a number of seams to try and stop them opening up every year.

After some thought I decided not to have any other work done at Messolonghi- politics in the yard prevented a better solution.

However, I was still in the throes of varnish removal when Diane arrived to help take Eos up to Preveza and I had omitted to prepare her quarters. Not a good move.  We still had to go back in the water and there was the problem. The crane did not lift Eos as instructed and some damage ensued.

The weather was beautiful and that improved things a bit.

Anyway, we got to Preveza without incident in more or less flat calm but I guess I still owe her an apology.

The masts were removed and holes filled. A new gantry was fitted by Antares (Michael Krause), who did some excellent work. He also produced the passerelle bracket to my design, which saves us manhandling the ladder around and gives more flexibility to how we can deploy it. The “roof rack” for the solar panels let us mount them over part of the main hatch- 360 watts of power, which makes a big difference to the battery charging- they even gas slightly- not sure we want that, but I am letting them settle down.

A sight glass on the pump discharge is interesting and very helpful when it  comes to knowing when the black or grey tank is empty.

I changed the old hinged doors to sliding, with some difficulty because the roof section over the doors lifts up and makes waterproofing difficult. However, they keep the water out!

The NASA AIS engine worked fine but I cannot now interface it with the new Windows 8 laptop so I advanced my plan to get a transponder. However, the new arrangement of a 22inch monitor and wireless keyboard lets me keep the laptop under the chart table and out of harms way, whilst letting us see the chart from across the wheelhouse. As an aside, I lost the little dongle for the keyboard and Logitech sent me a new one for free. What excellent service.

Decks now painted white and it only remains to paint the two coachroofs.

We came home in July and then I was diagnosed with a heart problem, so did not get out again till November, by which time it was very wintry- see photo above.  I found out eventually that the boat astern of us had burst into flames some weeks previously and burnt out. My boat apparently had been dragged forward and away from the flames. However, they were hot enough to melt the radar reflector and also the temporary nameplate. I found bits of broken glass in the slats of the table on the aft deck, so it must have been an interesting hour or so. However, no other damage that I could see.The new AIS transponder works fine and on test behaved perfectly.

See the log of the completed part of the voyage on the next page. The overall chart is below.

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