There's not much left of me

Loosing body parts in Greece!

21st June 2015
Guns on Boats
The Greek Crisis
Loosing body parts in Greece


Sailing to Greece from Italy

How to pull my own tooth out in Greece

We decided that winter is officially over and hopefully the weather gods are in agreement as we set off from our winter berth in Sicily towards Greece.


I am up to my neck in it..again.

The day before we were due to leave we thought I had done everything possible to get Cygnus III ready for the 320 mile sail. That’s when we found the forward toilet was blocked. I ended up removing and clearing all the pipes of their contents, most of which ended up on me. I always seem to be in the brown smelly stuff to one degree or another. At least it was better than using the French toilets!


Now where did I put it?

Talking about the brown smelly stuff….. We were in the bar in Sicily for one of our liveaboards drinking nights. A local girl had gone into the toilet and there were a couple of people waiting.

Girls on toilets

Now where did that go?

When the girl came out she made a very hasty exit from the bar for some reason. Now there is a bit of presumption here as I was obviously not in the toilet with her. What I do know is that Italian toilets, like most Mediterranean countries have no toilet seats. The girl had obviously gone in for a push and grunt and hovered when doing so. Now the poor girls aim must have been slightly amiss as I am sure she felt something come out but when she looked there was nothing there. What she didn’t realise was that the offending article had in fact missed the bowl and hit the floor so when she turned round to look she stood in it. She seems to have searched high and low for the spoils of her efforts not knowing that it was attached to her shoe. It was everywhere. Hence the reason for her very hasty exit. If for some reason you had wanted to follow her you wouldn’t need an Indian Scout to find the trail. As they say “shit happens” but for some it tends to stick to some of us more than others.


Leaving Sicily

So where was I.. Oh yes, we left Marina di Ragusa and two wonderful winters behind to sail to Greece. We did stop at Syracuse and Taromina on the way to say goodbye to some other very special people.


Sailing to Greece

Planning the trip from Italy to Greece

We burnt a lot of midnight oil

The sail to Greece had been meticulously planned over the burning oil of many winter nights. We were going to set off and if there was wind we would follow it and anchor if it stopped. At some point we would hit land somewhere if we headed east. From there we could ask which direction we should go to get to Greece. As it was we managed to sail almost continually along the foot of Italy and across only stopping for a rest twice. Mr Weatherman did his bit by getting things totally wrong and instead of light winds we ended up sailing mainly in 25 to 30 knots but we flew along. It did get a bit bad as we approached land so we ducked behind an Island called N. Othonoi and anchored there for the night out of the wind and big seas. At least we were in Greece according to the locals.  We had hit it first time. (Beginners luck). The following morning we sailed across to Corfu and finally anchored in a beautiful bay. We felt relaxed and as if we were home.


Exit Greece stage left.

The afternoon was full of sunshine, a couple of beers on deck and an offer to take Angelina ashore to get something to eat. It would be our first meal together in a Taverna for a very long time but it felt right and Angelina deserves far more than a meal for putting up with me. As we were just about to leave in the dinghy the wind hit from nowhere. It was like being given the biggest “wedgie” in the world only far more uncomfortable and it also left a few brown stains. Now some may call what happened next as dragging but we say it was a slow controlled exit. In any event our anchor had broken loose and we were going backwards out of the bay whether we liked it or not. To make it worse we were not the only ones and the other boats dragged into our space leaving no room to safely anchor again. When we did get the anchor up we also brought up the hanging gardens of Babylon with it. Besides that the winds had got so strong and constant we could not keep Cygnus III in a straight line without fear of blowing onto other boats.


We wanted to sail anyway.

We had encountered winds like this before and usually they blew out quiet quickly. We decided the best thing to do was potter around out at sea for a while where there was plenty of room. For some reason there did not seem to be many other boats around and we had the Ionian all to ourselves. Instead of blowing over the winds just got stronger and stronger and we saw 46 knots registering which makes sailing pretty interesting and exciting. It was three hours before the wind dropped enough to get in somewhere and safely anchor. Our first real day in Greece and we had been well and truly chewed up and kicked out.


Does Greece have a tooth fairy?

Pulling teeth in Greece

Go on.. do it.. just pull

On the way over to Greece I had been having a problem with a tooth that was giving me pain and was a bit loose. Now when it comes to pain I am a total wimp so the thought of pulling it out myself was not appealing. I had wobbled it around and felt a few sinews snap but it was still hanging in there. It was becoming annoying and the only thing I could do was to ask Angelina to pull it out or do it myself. I decided I would do the home dentistry bit but was having difficulty determining which instrument to use. Mole grips, pliers or this other grippy thing I had. I was also racking my brains trying to remember which one I had used a couple of days earlier to unblock the toilet as this could well effect my decision.

The tooth

If thy tooth offends thee pluck it out!

I was in a dilemma so decided to sleep on it. It was during the night the Greek tooth fairy magically appeared when I was asleep. I woke up during the night with something in my mouth. My tooth had escaped! I put it under my pillow but alas all I got was an IOU from the Greek fairy promising to pay it back later and did I want it in Euro’s, Drachmas or Roubles?


Going viral in Greece

I don’t know if I am upset or not. Putting a video on the Cygnus III blog of me pulling my own tooth out at sea with pliers used on a toilet may well have gone viral. Then again, so would my mouth.

Pulling toe nails off in Greece

Which tool should I use?

The good news is that when I was fitting some solar panels I managed to drop one on my big toe which has now turned black and the toe nail needs to be pulled off. I may not have a video of me pulling my own teeth out but votes for pulling toenails off?

Now which should I use, the mole grips, pliers or the other grippy things? What I do know there is far less of me now then when we set out for Greece.




Other posts we think you will enjoy


  1. Seems I’m not the only one having problems anchoring as of late. Enjoy your time in Greece. We are in Monastir, now. Arrived just before the attacks. I’m a little bit reluctant to pay the marina the complete fees just yet. I scheduled a berth for a few weeks but looks like I might not need most of it because of what happened in Sousse.

  2. Hey Mark! You’re summer is off to an interesting and amusing start. I can’t even attempt to imagine what might happen next. Perhaps this summer will be filled with odd happenings…but no matter what, I hope you don’t lose any more body parts! Hope to see you soon

    1. But why does everything always seem to happen to us. We weren’t in Greece four hours before they were trying to kick us out with some of the highest winds they had seen in a long time. My olives were quaking a bit.

Leave a comment