Turkey V - From Marmaris, heading West.
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Turkey IV - From Fethiye, heading west to Marmaris.
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Turkey VI - Marmaris, Turunç Ekinçik and Dalyan.
Log Entry Saturday 19th May - Marmaris gets ready to celebrate Atatürk Remembrance day, the weather still not kind!
Marmaris, it's local authorities and the people have worked very hard toward the celebration of one of the most important days in modern day Turkish history. Today, a national holiday, commemorating Atatürk's birthday (1881) and his arrival in Samsun in 1919 to begin the War of Independence that resulted in the foundation of today's Turkish Republic.
We awake to a heavy naval presence both in the bay and on the town quay, the gullets being pushed out to anchor clearing a section of the town quay for the celebration.
We find the Turks to be a very nationalistic nation, today flags fly from many windows in the centre, the statue of Atatürk, in the square off the quay, heavily decorated with flowers. Unfortunately the weather is not good with sporadic heavy showers through out the day, however it is still warm.
In front of the statue there begins the building of a stage and sound system for tonight's entertainment.
The building of a new central park on the ground of the former Tansas supermarket has been progressing night and day, it's target for completion being today, two centre pieces, a waterfall and a fountain functioning to music.
As we walk the quay the heavy down pours come and go, we had planned to come back into town tonight, but the weather becomes consistently worse as the day progresses. We are anchored only 300-500 meters off the rear of the stage, sitting dry on Sailaway listening to the music in comfort becomes very a very realistic option?
As we return to Sailaway a further heavy down pour puts a definite stop to us returning to town tonight, we are joined in the anchorage by two playful dolphins.
Log Entry Friday 18th May - Last night was one of the most violent storms at anchor that we have encountered.
A forecast gave us warning of a number of days of very strong winds from the south and torrential rain - it arrived over twelve hours early, about 11pm last night. We spent the night with very little sleep, holding onto one's bed was the main objective. As the gusts grew in strength so did the size of the waves, the noise was incredible. As Sailaway was held in position by our anchor, each wave would pick us up as it traveled underneath our hull, as we were dropped of the wave the stern crashed into the trough of the passing wave - deafening at times. We sat it out in safety, to try and move and search better cover would not have been the correct thing to do - there was enough of that ahead of us. As we checked Sailaway during the night winds a number of engines could be heard to start ahead of us as they dragged their anchors. At around 4am, the winds seemed to begin to fall and then the rain came with a vengeance, time for a couple of hours sleep?
We awoke to an angry sky and, almost a different anchorage, boats had moved all around us, the water around us full of debris, washed into the bay by the city's storm drains. We did what we could to check Sailaway over before the next wave of weather hit us - we had sustained no damage what so ever. In daylight, bad weather never seems so threatening?
As each of the weather fronts hit us the sky darkens to such a degree that it shuts our solar panels down, automatically activating both our upper and lower anchor lights.
We feel sorry for the poor tourists on holiday, the trip boats and water taxies operating as if all was normal, still, we have at least another two days of this? At one point we even sea four people in the water off the deserted beach - "We are on holiday and will have fun!"
Log Entry Wednesday 16th May - We sit out the volatile weather at Marmaris.
Each day is different, usually totally different to the forecast, lots of rain and strong winds, predominantly from the south as apposed to the traditional "Meltemi" for this time of year, from the north west? We have a few things to sort out onboard and in our personal lives, all best done from Marmaris, so here we stay.
We sat yesterday in strong winds we watched a "US flagged vessel" enter the Limani and make it's way into the anchorage and drop it's anchor. It was as if all was completed within minutes, the anchored dropped, the dinghy put into the water and all disappeared ashore. We always sit and wait for an hour or so, as is customary, to ensure that Sailaway is secure, the anchor well set - not these people? Contrary to forecast the wind became quite strong that afternoon, the "US flagged vessel" began to drag. A nearby French sailboat went straight to it's assistance, with no one aboard a difficult task to make the vessel secure, let alone stop it from creating damage to the nearby trip boats on the quay. With the help of the French guy the drifting vessel was taken along and secured along side one of the large Turkish gullets. Technically now, the gullet has salvage rights - a possible 25% or more of it's value - an interesting position to find oneself in? That was exactly what happened, the vessel's owners returned late that evening to find their vessel secured along side a gullet. It was later re-anchored not far from it's original position before it drifted. I am sure the Turkish skipper would have said "Just take it back, I want not a penny as dictated by Maritime Law" - or not!
It is becoming more and more difficult to keep oneself busy, a stitch or two in the sails needed, winds allowing.
A school parade passes nearby in celebration of "Atatürk Remembrance and Youth & Sports Day" (Atatürk'ü Anma ve Gençlik Spor Bayrami, May 19) a national holiday, commemorating Atatürk's birthday (1881) and his arrival in Samsun in 1919 to begin the War of Independence that resulted in the foundation of the Turkish Republic.
Ann keeps a close watch ensuring very little traffic comes and goes without recognition, yet another large cruise ship and a large four mast "Maltese flagged" vessel enter the port - nothing gets past Ann.
Checking the forecast we have further forecast strong, almost gale force southerlies and four to five days of torrential rain - oh well never mind, at least it is still warm!