David's Diary: Thursday, July 4, 2002

Passage: Marina di Roma to Salerno, Italy

Isola Ponza

We celebrated Canada Day (the date that Canada was founded) on July 1st in Marina di Roma. After returning to the boat from Rome we had to stay in the marina to wait out some bad weather and strong winds from the south. The waves and swell built up outside the breakwater, while we watched safely from inside the marina. Jocelyn, Kevin, and Allen even met some other children on a megayacht moored just down the dock from Dragonsinger, so the time went quickly.

On Passage
Boys On Passage

We started out yesterday for the Island of Ponza. Ponza is part of the Pontine Islands. This group of islands is near enough to Rome that it is crowded with both Romans and visitors in July and August. We arrived at Ponza and anchored under the towering cliffs that surround the bay around 5:00 in the afternoon. There was a long low swell and Dragonsinger rolled uncomfortably. After looking around the anchorage we decided to reset for a few hours and then push on further south. It would be better to be up all night travelling rather than be up all night being rocked by the swell.

Isla di Capri

Just after midnight, Karalee and Jocelyn got the mainsail set with the boom out and secured with our protector. All through the night Dragonsinger kept moving as the watches changed. By morning, Kevin and I were on watch when we had to pull in the main and turn on the motor as the wind that had driven us through the night finally died. As we passed the island of Capri we celebrated the longest sail Dragonsinger has ever done, more than nine hours, by having breakfast in the cockpit.

Amalfi Coast
Amalfi Coast

Through the morning we passed along the Amalfi Coast. The tall mountains along the coast rise majestically from the sea providing a backdrop off our port side as we motored towards Salerno. In the distance we could see tiny villages clinging to the slopes while steep-sided ravines lead down from the peaks to the water.

Bell Tower
Salerno Duomo Bell Tower

Just before 1:00PM we arrived in Salerno. We all had a nap to recover from our passage. What had started out yesterday as an easy ten-hour passage turned into an overnight thirty-hour passage instead. Such changes of plan are a part of cruising. After our nap, Jocelyn and I explored the narrow streets of Salerno and paid a quick visit to the Duomo. But the real reason we are here is to see Pompeii which we plan to do tomorrow.

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