Currently transiting the Canakkale Straits and experiencing moderate 10-15kt SW winds with nil swell. Our current speed is 8kts and temperature is a cool 12 degrees.
Welcome to day 9 of our voyage. Well following a very successful visit Young Endeavour has now departed Istanbul. It was a busy start to the morning with morning brief followed by preparations for getting underway. While this was occurring we had visits from the Assistant Defence Attache , our Turkish Navy Liaison Officer and a number of other Australian and New Zealand friends who come down to the marina to farewell the ship.
With these farewells complete we let go all lines and quietly departed our berth at the Atakoy Marina at 1000. Once clear of the marina we altered course to the south west and commenced our passage across the Marmara Sea.
Being back at sea has meant that our focus is now back on our training program and the Watch Leaders have been busy throughout the day instructing their watches on how to set and furl sails and deck safety. This has progressed really well and we expect that by late tomorrow afternoon all of our new crew will have had the opportunity to set and furl most sails and also tack the ship.
Overnight our World Voyagers will start to settle into their three watch routine and consolidate duties like helming the ship, keeping lookout, weather observations and engineering rounds. While doing this they also hopefully undertake another climb of the mast and set more sails as the weather conditions permit.
The time is now 2145 and we have now successfully crossed the Marmara Sea and have entered the Canakkale Straits (Dardanelles). Our current intention is to continue to make best speed so that we can arrive in Volos (Greece) on schedule on Monday 4th May.
The responsibility of writing tonight’s Log has gone to Red Watch so please enjoy reading about the World Voyagers adventures in Istanbul written this evening by Zak and Atlanta. Enjoy
Until tomorrow, take care.
Captains Log: 02MAY15
Today we find ourselves setting sail from Istanbul for (hopefully) sunny Greece! Whilst spending 3 days in the beautiful city of Istanbul we took part in several tours of the city including The Old City, The Grand Bazaar, The Spice Markets, The numerous palaces and mosques as well as Turkish baths and Turkish theatre restaurants. All in all, a few very full days and a good chance to catch up on some well needed rest and recovery for those who were unlucky enough to catch colds.
One of the many highlights of Istanbul was holding a ‘Sundowner’ cocktail party onboard the ship for the various Dignitaries and VIP’s invited onboard to welcome Young Endeavour to Istanbul and to meet the Crew . After the guests departed it was time for the youth crew to band together in a sing along to some great music. We no doubt entertained the neighbours in the Mariner with versions of Bohemian Rhapsody, Tribute, You’re The Voice and many more. We also welcomed aboard our new Maltese crew member; Stefan, who will sail with us until we reach the port of Valetta.
Day 1 of our stop in Istanbul saw a small group depart on an East/West tour setting foot on both Europe and Asia in the same day! Those who stayed onboard enjoyed a relaxing day, catching up on some reading, sleep and diary work. A few of the Staffies decided to go for a wander, taking some of the youthies with them for an adventure or two. Midway through the day a truck arrived with 10,000L of water for our fresh water tanks. Ironically, this 10,000L was not delivered in a small water tanker, but in 19L water bottles (500 of them to exact). The safety of Turkish water couldn’t be confirmed so with no other alternative the afternoon was spent filling up our large water tanks with a red funnel and 500 19L water bottles. With around 150 containers in the tank, the departing truck kindly agreed to take the empties. They reversed the truck up to the side of the ship and Staffie Matt jumped in to stack the bottles neatly. Needless to say that once he was inside it was too tempting to just pass them down for a neat stack, therefore, a free-for-all ensued, and the 19L bottles were targeted at the back of the truck (or the real target – Matt). With much childlike enthusiasm we all had great fun in pitching, kicking, throwing, launching and even dunking the empties into the back of the truck. Matt soon gave up stacking them and, once the truck was filled with empties, he piled on top of them to see if they’d hold his weight. They did.
Day 2 again saw a small group take part in a 12 hour walking tour of the Grand Bazaar, the Palaces and Mosques, the underwater cisterns and just a general exploration of the city. Later that evening Jennifer, our Media liaison extraordinaire and special guest on board organised a bus to pickup the remainder of the crew from the Marina to join the day walkers for an exploration of the Old City and a chance for some eating and time away from the ship. It gave our brilliant Chefos a well deserved break. The streets of Istanbul are full of many wondrous items and trinkets, some practical, some beautiful and some just down right strange. In the words of one vendor “I have been waiting all of my life to sell to you something you do not need”. We all spent a good bit of money buying this-and-that, presents and souvenirs and finding good Turkish delights and baklava to indulge in. After meeting up at the Blue Mosque to catch the bus back to ship we found our old friend ‘Bean’, a stray dog who some of the crew had made friends with before joining the ship. Bean faithfully followed us back to the bus and, after some encouragement, hopped on the bus to great applause and a shocked Jennifer. Unfortunately he was not allowed to accompany us back to the ship and become the ships dog, therefore he was lead off the bus and looked very sad as we drove away.
Day 3 the adventure begins again with a group of Youthies leaving early for another awesome tour organised by Jennifer. This time they were off for a Bosphorous cruise and a tour of the Spice Markets. A small number of crew elected to stay behind and man the ship, which naturally went right out the window once a staff member announced they were off to explore. Over the course of the day 3 groups went out. One with Dougie to the shopping centre, one with Chefo Marcos in search of a marine shop and the other with Lindsey to…the horse races. Marcos and his band of adventurers were attempting the impossible task of trying to get from Asia Turkey into Europe Turkey via public transport. A feat made more challenging by the public holiday May Day which is Turkeys Day off, Protest. Riots, Police and blocked roads succeeded in stopping just about every mode of public transport possible to our chagrin. So after a walk, a bus, a tram, a bus, a walk and then a taxi we found ourselves a marine store! Since we were so close, we decided to pay our old friends at the Badabing Hostel (our home away from home in Turkey) a visit to return some accidentally borrowed dorm keys and retrieve some lost property.
That evening Jennifer had organised a visit to the Turkish Baths where we were scrubbed, rubbed and cleaned for an hour and a half. A Turkish Bath is a unique experience and one which requires an open mind. First you are shown to a small room where you’re given a key and a towel. After removing all clothes and wrapping the towel around yourself you walk through a door leading to the baths. Grand marble floors, benches and a raised platform greet you inside. After 10-20 minutes inside a sauna room, a Turkish man beckons you to come for a massage. He then proceeds to throw lots of hot water over your head and body and scrub you thoroughly with an exfoliating glove. You are then led to the marble platform where you lie first on your back and then on your stomach as you are washed and massaged with soap.
The combination of being both washed, massaged and shampooed at the same time by a very rotund and hairy Turkish man is what makes this a unique experience. Once the massage is finished you go for a dip in the cooler swimming pool stashed away inside a cavern like room that has eerie lights and echoes really well. We then went between the sauna room, steam room and swimming pool for the next half hour enjoying it while we could. We saved a lot of water for the ship that night. Needless to say, the girls had the same luxurious treatment, yet in a separate set of rooms.
Our last night in Istanbul saw a small group head off for a traditional Turkish Dinner and Belly Dancing Show in an 830 year old converted underground water cavern. As our table was set right up against the performance space, every one of the girls from our group (including the Staffies) were enticed up for part of one act or another, or to join in a short belly dance. It was a fabulous last night for those involved.
The morning of Day 4 we were up bright and early to cast off and set sail for Greece. We were eager to get underway and get in some climbs and sail time. No mischief was to be had today for we were hard at it learning the ropes, setting the sails and getting back into our watch routines.
The sun has set, the winds have picked up (just a little) so for now its fair winds and safe travels.
Zach and Atlanta
Big Jay-Man! Wishing you a very happy 13th Birthday! Hope you have a MAD weekend mate. Lots of Love, Aunty Jodie xxx
Miss FiFi (Fiona Kelly), my very best friend. Wishing you a very Happy Birthday. I hope those two amazing men in your life spoil you stupid. All my love and lots of Birthday kisses xxx Jo-Mo
‘Hi Mum, I made Red Watch Assistant-Watch Leader.’ From Marcos.
‘Hi Lauren, Mum, Grandma and Archie, having a blast and on the way to Greece. Hope you guys are having a good time back home. Love you lots” From Zach.
Hi Max, Mum, Dad, Family, My fantastic mates in Adelaide, and The Crew from Scribes. So far it has been like a mini holiday here in Turkey, and I am so excited to get underway with Sail Training and the daily routine of the Ship. Barely 45minutes ago I climbed the mast to the top with my Watch Team, and spent a wondrous time looking out across the horizon and Islands at around 37m above sea level. All I could think was that I was one of the luckiest people in the world at that moment in time. I am so excited for the next 5-6 weeks on this amazing vessel and I can’t wait to tell you all about it when I return. After this I shall head to bed, ready to be woken for the Morning Watch at 3:45am! All my love, Atlanta