Thursday 26 June 2014


The Mistral is still lurking in the central med and we have sailed for cover behind the marina breakwater at the head of the bay of Teulada, on the southern coast of Sardinia.  While setting the anchor, a grey rib surges along side and the driver politely asks if we want to enter the marina for the night. When we decline he looks up at the cloudless sky;  'Very dangerous, the Mistral' he warns with furrowed brow. Of course, we end up in the marina, with a whole pontoon to ourselves, our ensign hanging lifeless in the still evening air.

The village of Teulada is six kilometres away and Efisio books us a table at his favourite restaurant. When we ask how to get a taxi, he pauses for a moment, then hands us the keys to his Fiat with some vague directions and off we go.  Driving out of the brand new and almost empty marina, the small road winds around the hillside and over a bridge on its way inland. Despite the heat, the landscape is lush with Cyprus woods bordering grassy marshland from the many rivers that drain the hills. When we return from dinner, the charming Efisio tells us of his experience as a waiter on cruise ships and that he is new to the life of a marinero.  With a rueful grin he admits that his job is to get boats into the marina and as we return to Juno, there is barely a breath of wind and the sea has settled to a flat calm across the anchorage outside the breakwater.

The following morning the wind picks up again, and as an exercise, Fatty sails us single-handed, setting a reefed main and jib with an easy confidence, in twenty knots of wind pushing us east at eight knots.  Malfatano is a beautiful bay only twenty five miles west of Cagliari, and we anchor in eight metres of clear water, with the anchor clearly visible beneath us buried nicely in the deep milky sand. We take the rib to the beach and just as we settle down on our towels we hear a howl of dismay from a young boy on the beach.  A gust of wind has whipped his red Spiderman lilo off the beach and sends it tumbling across the bay out to sea. The loss is too awful to bear and its young owner is distraught as his precious steed disappears out of sight. I jump into the rib and retrieve the lilo, returning to the beach where a beautiful, and topless mother hands me a beer. 'You are our hero' she says and I am entranced.

Elena is married to Luciano, a professor of macro economics at the university of Trieste and they are on holiday with their son. We have dinner at the beach bar with them and another couple who are the parents of Spiderman.  Although they speak little English, we hear through Luciano's translation that they both work with handicapped children, the husband using horse therapy to treat disabled children. He explains that it is the gait of a horse that allows a child to relax its injured limbs and use its upper body like an able bodied person.  Spiderman races around the table with his playmate, the errant lilo firmly wedged under his father's chair.

Tomorrow we head for Cagliari where we hope to meet up with Fatty's step father who has travelled from Australia to spend a week sailing with friends, and by an extraordinary coincidence it seems that our paths are destined to cross in Sardinia.


  1. Nice job Fatty... Sailing single handed - you're my hero :-) Enjoy xx Brett & Dee

  2. picture of the wife?