At half past eight we let the moorings go and sailed out of Marina Villasimius.
In the entrance we met a tender with a large outboard. It came from the megayacht anchored off the marina. The tender sailed to the GC32 catamarans. A man went off. Was it the honourable Sir Ben Ainsley on his way to work in the Racing Tour 2019?
We didn't find out.
1 / 2 hours after we left the marina, we sailed through the narrow passage between Capo Carbonara and the small island of Cavoli.
The chartplotter showed that there were 149 miles to Sicily or rather the small island of Favignana, located a few miles off Sicily's west coast.
The wind was light. However no lighter than the mainsail gave a little extra speed when we pulled it out and used it as support for the engine.
We hadn't sailed long before we caught sight of a motoring sailboat
It headed straight against us.
It had probably left Sicily over a day ago.
We waved happily to each other when we got close.
They, because they probably were looking forward to a bath and undisturbed sleep. We, because we were excited about the trip that lay ahead of us.
Pia had set up a watch schedule
Two men on watch in 3 hours of in day time and 2 hours at night. We started the plan right away. The free watch rested and made breakfast, lunch and dinner at scheduled times. The watch was responsible for sailing Heron. Steering was handles by the autopilot. The watch's most important task in the light wind was to keep a good lookout.
The route of the big ships goes south of Sicily and Sardinia. There is limited commercial traffic in our route. This was why the risk of being sailed down by one of the big ships was small.
But a good lookout was still important. A collision with another pleasure boat, a fishing boat, a container or perhaps a sleeping whale could be fatal.
We saw only a few other pleasure boats.
One had for a while sailed at the same speed and course as us a nautical mile out on our starboard side.
“Sailboat on our starboard, Sailboat on our starboard. This is sailing yacht Heron "called Carl with decreasing enthusiasm a few times on the VHF.
To everyone's astonishment, the VHF suddenly sounded “Sailing Yacht Heron, Sailing Yacht Heron. This is sailing yacht Morgana”
Morgana, like Heron, had been in Marina Villasimius.
That we hadn't noticed them was explained by the skipper by the fact that they had been at the Racing Tour 19 center. The crew consisted of the skipper, his wife and their cat. We agreed to call each other every two hours after dark. Nice with companionship, not least when the mobile coverage soon after ceased.
In the middle of the afternoon we saw dolphins jumping on the aft. It was a big flock. It quickly caught us. Some of the dolphins continued to jump high up in the air near us, others swam under Heron and out to the bow. So close they could come without touching. It seemed like they were playing and having fun.
The flock disappeared as suddenly as it had come. A little later came another great playful flock and entertained their gratefull audience at Heron.
"Something's in the water," Pia warned, adding "at two o'clock" as she pointed to what looked like a brown cardboard box.
When we got close, we saw that the cardboard box was a sea turtle. It swam lazily in the surface without noticing our presence. Later, several appeared. Eventually, so often, neither the watch nor the free watch mentioned it.
Behind, we could see the mountains in Sardinia. With a height of about 900 meters they could theoretically be seen from a distance of 60 miles, but a few hours before sunset, they disappeared in the haze. Now we could only see water around us. And yes yes Morgana on our starboard side.
The wind turned south-east and got lighter. Now it was almost straight against us. We pulled in the mainsail and were now only motoring.
The sun began to sink and became red when it dived into the heating ice on the horizon. The first star appeared in the twilight sky. More turned up, and when the sky was completely black, it was filled with shining stars and planets.
"We see your lights clearly" it sounded in the VHF from Morgana at night's first check call. We replied that Morgana's light was also clear to us,
«What is the white light we can see in the sky on our starboard? Is it Tunis? "We asked at the night's next check call.
"I havn't thought about it, but it may well be so" sounded the receipt.
The moon had not yet arrived. We felt small and insignificant. In a weird way, we also felt safe under the sky, where shooting stars occasionally stroked the luminous stars and planets.
The moon emerged just over midnight. It lit up well. Now we could again sense the horizon. What we had long thought of was a lantern from a ship or aircraft turned out to be a planet in the sky above us.
"There is morild " said Lars on one of his watches. Morild is a light phenomenon that occurs in saline with special algae types. Unknown for what reason the algae reacts to emitting a flash of light when disturbed by a break in the sea surface. The morild lasted most of the night. Everyone saw the fairytale flashes of light when Heron broke the water surface or there were ripples on the sea surface.
It was about to be late at night. It was damp and cold. Several vessels appeared on the AIS. Just over five, it began to glow in the east. Daylight slowly but surely replaced the darknes.
Suddenly, the outlines of the outermost islands in the Aegadi archipelago appeared. When the sun was up, we could see all the islands and behind them Sicily.
After almost 24 hours on the same course, we turned and pointed to bow to the harbor at Favignana. The heat from the mountain came towards us when we got the 314 meters high Monte Santa Caterine on our starboard side. Nice after a cold and damp night.
We called the marina. No answer. A couple of times we requested permission to enter. Still no answer. When we passed the entrance, we informed the silent VHF that we were entering at the harbour. Now.
The marina had room for no more than 20 boats, but was nevertheless divided into two different departments.
We had booked a berth on the Navily app, but couldn't see which one.
«Heron. Navily ?? "A man shouted in a red shirt on the pier.
We answered yes and he waved us over to a free berth.
When Heron was well moored, Pia opened a bottle of Proseco and we cheered on a well done crossing
… And write a greeting (it is more welcome than you think)