The overnight sail that we hoped for to the Port of Venere was just not going to happen as the wind slowly died.The sails were all handed and the motors turned on and we continued steaming along to our destination peacefully into the night.
The 4am-8am watch was spent shivering in all the jumpers on board, and dodging tiny fishing vessels and watching the backdrop of beautiful scenery. Snowy mountains, idyllic Italian villages, more stars than could be counted, and a sunrise to die for. It really was an ultimate escape – “the life” seems like an apt phrase.
This solitude and peace was ultimately to be destroyed when an unassuming vessel approached the starboard side shouting and waving. We soon realised that the crew on the small vessel was adamant that we must change our course. The Captain, unruffled, informed the vessel he had already confirmed our passage with the shore earlier that morning.
We were then left alone to move full steam ahead to a safe anchorage. The anchor was dropped at 10:30 am to the sound of the Italian military testing their artillery by shelling their own waters. From the deck of Tenacious at a safe distance you could see the puff of smoke following a loud boom across the bay and finally the splash the shell fell into the sea.
Porto Venere was a relaxed affair. After several boat relays the whole crew found themselves in a very picturesque and quiet seaside port. Several hearty walks or well-earned beverages later (vino rossa) it was time to repeat the whole return procedure again.
It’s sad to think that the voyage is starting to wrap up. It seems to be a common theme from experience, and talking with other members of the crew, that these are incredible trips. Ones filled with memories or experiences that you wouldn’t swap for the world. Most of the crew seem to be debating more time off, and staying on another week…
FWD PORT Pete