Sunday morning was another gloriously sunny day but quite windy. We wanted to go out and try the new mainsail out to ensure we were happy and that the reefing lines were all attached properly – a bit of a shakedown sail, although probably only in the harbour as we didn’t have a Genoa. However, we still had a list of jobs to do before then and figured that the wind was scheduled to drop a bit, which would help when messing about getting the mainsail right.
First things first, though, we wouldn’t be on Nimmie if we didn’t have breakfast in the cockpit. The forecast was for around 22 degrees but it always seems hotter here and the light so much brighter! The list of jobs for the day was pretty long and included trying the outboard, replacing the joker valve in the forward heads so that the bowl doesn’t fill back up (that job always falls to me!), putting a new flyscreen in the forward cabin to keep the nasty mosquitos (which ended up taking over two hours – don’t ask!) and a bit of planning for our next trip in June to the Egadi Islands off western Sicily.
Before we knew it, it was 4pm so everything was stowed in order to go out and play. Of course, the wind hadn’t died at all but had picked up but it did mean that we could put the new sail through its paces, even in the sheltered confines of the harbour. For those of you who haven’t been to Malta, and why haven’t you, the harbours either aside of Valletta are quite spacious so perfect for what we wanted to do.
By the time we were finished trialling the new sail, the wind was up to 17 knots so we knew mooring was going to be ‘interesting’! Our current berth is right at the bottom of the pontoon just one berth off the concrete quay. Given that I haven’t ‘parked’ a boat since Sept last year, I was a little apprehensive as stern to mooring with strong winds means you can end up 90 degrees off where you should be! However, Nimmie behaved beautifully and we came in with no drama at all. The recent rain has meant that everything was covered in sand so we decided to give her a good wash. An hour and a half later, we finally finished. By this time it was getting a bit chilly so whilst supper would be eaten down below, there was sufficient warmth for a final drink in the cockpit. By the time we had finished supper and watched a movie on DVD, it was time for bed.
Monday morning was, again, gloriously sunny and windy so we thought that we might get a chance to get into Valletta or Sliema after the last of our jobs were completed. Fat chance! The headlining in the saloon was dropping so we had to reglue and clamp that. We decided to flush the tanks with steriliser as we found out that the water pipes in Malta are pre-war so sometimes there is discolouration. It tastes fine but looks a bit odd. At 9am sharp, the sprayhood man turned up so we could show him how the sprayhood needed to zip onto the Bimini. By the time we had done all that and closed the boat down for the next month, we had ten minutes before the taxi arrived! Oh well, we still had a lovely time and thank goodness we had an extra day. Not long until our next trip in June.