5 to September 14, 2005: Back to Denmark
5, 2005 (Monday)
sun is shining, there is little wind. We return the extension for
our power chord to charge our cell phone and our computers (we cannot
charge anything else at this time because our transformer is "toast"
as you might remember). We say good-bye, take our docking lines
off and ease out of our very tight spot. Thank God Juergen knows
how to handle Impromptu. We barely had space to reverse before we
almost could have bumped into the huge powerboat that had arrived
the night before, and in front of us were pilings for the adjacent
docking spaces - of course filled with sailboats. Juergen went back
and forth until he could use the bow thruster to move the bow around
and then forward - an excellent manoeuvre, which people admired
him for (again).We raised our sails after getting through the very
tight channel (Juergen thinks we even hit bottom at times - in the
channel) but kept our engine going as the wind was very light. It
was yet another beautiful day, and we did not mind going at around
6.8 knots, i.e., we kept the engine going very slowly. It was beautiful.
After rounding Fehmarn's southern coast, we passed it west and kept
going until we saw the southeastern corner of Langeland, our next
island. Bagenkop (pronounced "Bay-enkop") was just another
3 nm away - we motored that part, found the entrance to the harbor
and went straight for the dock with the widest pilings (no parallel
docking possible here). We did really well and were tied up within
just a couple of minutes with 6, yes SIX lines (two forward and
four aft, two tied to our midship cleats and two tied to our aft
cleats). This way, we sat perfectly secure. We had lunch in the
cockpit and then I walked around a little to investigate. Juergen
really hates walking because his hip is hurting him too much. He
watched me from the cockpit so I could not get into trouble, I guess.
on foto to expand!
Dock in Bagenkop
in their imaginary Canoe
later on went to see the harbor master, paid our overnight fee and
even got access to the Internet, except it was so slow that it did
not load our website properly. If you checked last night or today,
you may have noticed that a couple of pictures were missing. Sorry
about that, but there was nothing I could do. I tried at least four
or five times to upload, the best we could do was what you saw,
and I don't know whether this will be any better today. We will
see. For lunch, we had eaten the eel we had gotten as a gift from
the man who had left his camera next to the bench in Lemkenhafen.
We were not hungry at all for dinner, so we sat in the cockpit,
enjoyed the scenery and watched the incoming boats, had some wine
and a few chips, went to bed early as we both enjoy reading at night
(I think you noticed that already).
6, 2005 (Tuesday)
unbelievable morning. The sun was shining, the wind promised great
sailing. We had breakfast in the cockpit. Then Juergen treated me
to a walk towards the church I had wanted to go to the night before,
except, the Internet access kept me away from it until it was dark...
So we asked a Danish woman how to get to the church. She responded
in Danish. We understood that we could walk through her property
to get there, which we did. The church was beautiful, and I took
a bunch of photos. This is only one sample. On the way, we saw this
sculpture of Vikings in the property of a mariner's school. We left
our dock around 1045, motor-sailed until we got to the south eastern
corner of the island and began sailing as we rounded the corner
to move further north towards our next goal on the same island of
Langeland, Spodsbjerg. It took about three hours of perfect sailing
(starting at 4.9 knots, reaching 7.4 knots at times and moving along
mostly at around 6.8 - 7 knots - wonderful). The sun kept shining.
We could be in shorts (not T-shirts until we hit land). We had a
wonderful time. We docked (parallel), had lunch (the smoked mackerel
we had purchased a few days ago) and then walked over to the harbormaster's
office, which was supposed to be open at 1600. He asked us to move
our boat as he expected a tug around midnight which wants to unload
or load - we were not quite sure - some coal, take a couple of hours
of sleep and then leave again. He did not want us to be disturbed.
We moved into a spot with pilings again - this time, it worked very
well. There was literally no wind and we got some help from the
people on the next boat. It was quite easy.
walked to the bus stop as we had wanted to visit Rudkobing, a town
on the other side of the island, too far to reach by boat given
our plans for Svendborg for tomorrow but interestingly written up
to see it. This bus was for free. The unfortunate thing was that
by the time we arrived almost all the shops had already closed.
We had a chance to visit an antique dealer who had some very interesting
Royal Kopenhagen items, including a fairly sizable vase with a sailboat
motif, made before 1929 if I remember correctly. I really love Royal
Kopenhagen china and thought this vase was a good buy. We decided
to discuss it. We can always have it shipped. There were lots of
other items I would have loved to buy but Juergen felt they were
too risky as gifts for others.
on foto to expand!
fort he bus that never came
we visited by bus
strolled back to the bus stop only to learn that there was no more
"free" bus that evening. We had to walk quite a bit to
get to the bus terminal for the official bus line which, in the
end, took us back around 1915. We enjoyed some wine, sitting in
the cockpit. At sundown, our flag was rolled up, I checked tomorrow's
weather forecast (sunny - thank God - wind between 2 and 4 Beaufort,
i.e., not much but hopefully ok though from SW). We will see. We
will have to cover about 40plus nm tomorrow. This means, we will
have to leave at 0900 at the latest as it is imperative not to arrive
too late in any port (a) to find a good spot and, more importantly,
(b) to sail during daylight (the buoys are often hard to make out
in these waters).
had gotten a phone call from Juergen's sister Silvi while walking
through Rudkobing. Her younger daughter Andrea, one of my godchildren,
had gotten engaged to Sander over the weekend. It must have been
a rather romantic affair as he asked for her hand (we would have
loved to play mouse...). We think it is a great thing and wish them
well - need to call them either tonight or some time tomorrow (maybe
in the morning before they go to work).
7, 2005 (Wednesday)
left fairly early as we had about 38 nm to cover and wanted to arrive
early for a good docking spot. You may have noticed that this is
critical in these harbors as, despite their many docks for "guests"
and the relatively late season (the summer is officially over in
terms of school vacation in all European countries). We had the
current with us (given that we were sailing in the Great Belt, there
is some tidal current, not as strong as we are used to on the East
Coast or the Europeans in the North Sea but still) and made between
7.8 to 9.3 knots, sailing. At the north eastern tip of Langeland,
we decided to take the genoa in as the course change caused us to
go directly into the wind and the channels through which we had
to manoeuvre were not always very wide and the shallows about a
foot in depth, not a comfortable situation for us. Now we had the
current against us as we went through the sound but we had made
so much headway that we did not care. We found all the cardinal
and other buoys to assure our safe passage. The haze began to lift
slightly and we neared the coastline of the island of Fyn, which
we had been on before (remember our visit to Bogense and, by bus,
to Odense?). The coastline was beautiful, the houses gorgeous. We
thoroughly enjoyed our travel.
town of Svendborg is one of the largest if not the largest on this
island. It has some picturesque buildings, a beautiful church, but
also lots of industry. We decided to dock in the commercial harbor
as that was closest to town. We followed recommendations from others.
Yet, I was rather disappointed as the harbor was noisy and not quaint.
We have been spoiled over the past few weeks with generally very
beautiful ports, little towns, lots of history. We stayed two nights
nevertheless as we purchased a few little items as gifts. I also
observed a theft by a young man on a bicycle who was just stuffing
a shopping bag with clothes that had been displayed outside to lure
buyers. As he bicycled off a winter jacket started showing under
his T-shirt. I was appalled that this happened in broad daylight.
We did not do anything about it as he was quickly out of sight and
our Danish is non-existent. So, by the time we would have alerted
the shop manager, the thief would have long been gone. Still, I
felt bad about this incident, which made this town even less likable
on foto to expand!
departing from Svendborg...
another one of my favorite Churches...
9, 2005 (Friday)
departed gladly in light rain and wind and sailed very slowly (between
4.1 knots and 2.9 knots) for three hours or so in a very narrow
fjord, under a highway bridge, enjoying the beautiful scenery, churches,
homes, until we turned on the engine, passing two dredges that assured
the proper channel depth for the ferries and other ships. We arrived
in Aeroskobing, the most beautiful town in Denmark, at least by
our measure, and went into the commercial harbor. The yacht harbor
has no room for boats like ours. The guidebooks recommend for "larger
yachts" to use this particular harbor. I thought we were exaggerating
but when I later on saw the yacht harbor I agreed. We found a great
spot for the boat with parallel docking. The "dock" was
as wide as an attractive boardwalk, slightly higher was another
path bordered by a natural stone seawall from where we could overlook
parts of this island but also other smaller islands which we had
passed as we made our way here.
immediately took a walk through town and were enthralled. So much
beauty. This town stems largely from the 18th century. Many of its
houses show dates of 1721, 1749, etc. Most of them are extremely
well maintained. Some still have the original "Butzenscheiben"
(I don't know the English term if there is one. The windowpanes
are not flat but concave, and the glass is not perfect, not surprisingly,
given the time of manufacture). See for yourself...
had dinner in one of the hotel restaurants, in "Det Lille Hotel",
very cozy with decent food and a good bottle of Italian red, recommended
by the maitre d'. We strolled through town, bought a couple of small
gifts, lots of post cards some of you will receive over the next
September 10, 2005 (Saturday),
investigated the town further, then played Backgammon sitting in
the cockpit. The sun was shining warm enough to wear shorts. By
about 1700 the wind started blowing and it got so cold that long
pants and sweaters were not sufficient to remain outside. We enjoyed
some wine, dinner on the boat, made a few phone calls. Juergen read.
I updated my diary, which I had neglected for almost a week. So
I had lots of catching up to do.
on foto to expand!
the crooked Construction
with the famous "Butzenscheiben"
Building in Aeroskobing
Danes must have been a lot shorter at time of construction
than we are today
with a beautiful carved Door
11, 2005 (Sunday)
had talked about moving on to the next harbor yesterday, but when
we realized that the weather was grey and as cold as last night
and the wind continued blowing as it had all night, we decided to
do laundry on the boat, transfer photos onto the computer so I can
insert them into my website text and catch up with reading and other
things. Juergen topped off our water tank not only because the washing
machine needs water but also because this will be the last time
before the boat goes into winter storage. On this island which generates
already around 80% of its energy needs from renewable sources (wind
turbines, huge solar panel areas, other sources), they charge for
water and electricity. Of course, we had to fill up here rather
than in any of the harbors where water was free. Well, I guess,
we are doing something good for the island and love doing so as
we really enjoy this place. Our next destination, Marstal, will
also be on this island but on its southern end. That will most likely
be our last Danish port before reentering Germany. So far we have
already visited 16 Danish ports and two German since we went through
the Kiel Canal. If we include the island of Norderney and Cuxhaven,
it is already 4 German ports and 16 Danish. Where we will go in
Germany before going back to Kiel to visit - hopefully - with two
of our friends (Carola and Albrecht in Heikendorf and Biene and
Sigi in Strande) we have not decided. I guess a lot depends on the
weather and our mood. Also, I would love to gain Internet access
again - it was supposed to be possible in Svendborg. I never got
in. There is no such possibility in this harbor.
12, 2005 (Monday)
was time to leave Aeroskobing before we would never leave any more...
It was a little grey but not too bad, and we would only have about
13 nm to go before we would tie up at yet another harbor written
up as particularly beautiful, Marstal. This town is larger than
Aeroskobing and has a long history of sailing and sea going. To
get there, the actual distance as the birds fly is at most 6 nm
but there are lots of shallows and cardinal and other markers to
ensure that one stays in sufficient water depth. The dredges have
continued working, not in these channels but in those leading from
Svendborg to Aeroskobing. Every night, they came back into the harbor
to dock. Now, on our way to Marstal, we saw them working a few miles
further Northeast of us.
arrived after a very slow downwind sail, but at least we could sail!!!
and went to dock number 8, far into the harbor but thank God away
from all the industrial docks including a dry dock. It was totally
empty. We picked the pilings farthest apart and tied up like real
pros, stern lines first, then the bowlines and then two springs
from the pilings to midship. We walked around town and were actually
a little disappointed after so much beauty in Aeroskobing.
on foto to expand!
Marstal Church is famous for its Age (1738)...
the many Sailboats hanging from the Ceiling
Mirror in front of the Window Next to the Entrance Door Ensures
early Warnung of Visitors
Houses for Vacationers
almost alone at the Visitors' Dock
September 13, 2005 (Tuesday)
decided to stay as we wanted to visit the shipping museum and get
to know the town a little better. The museum was worth spending
hours in. It consisted of four historic buildings with 36 rooms
filled with models, photos, paintings, letters written by sailors
in the 19th century and, of course, many relics. We spent about
three hours walking around this extremely well arranged display.
Happy hour was taken in the cockpit in the setting sun though the
wind started blowing a little harder and colder. We watched five
sailboats come onto our dock, all occupied by at least 4 men, in
some cases 5 and 6. It keeps amazing us how few women are sailing,
at least at this time of year. We amused ourselves watching how
inefficiently people tie up their boats who obviously sail in these
waters and should be used to the pilings. We were proud of ourselves,
particularly since we are only two aboard. The night was noisy from
the blowing wind and the waves splashing our stern. Our electric
chord is too short for some of the docks to be laid out properly.
Therefore, in the blowing wind, I decided to get up and bring it
back onboard. It was 0215 and blowing 26 to 28 knots and it was
very cold. I was glad to be back in bed after just a few minutes.September
14, 2005 (Wednesday) It is grey and foggy and the wind keeps howling.
The weather forecast indicated storm gusts for today and tomorrow.
As there is no need for us to move and the wind would have been
straight on our nose, we decided to enjoy our spot in Marstal, playing
Backgammon, eating pancakes with fresh strawberries, knitting and
reading. My 690 page book will be finished today. Then Juergen can
suffer through it. He keeps beating me in Backgammon. I am starting
to lose my patience. It is time for the weather to improve so we
can go sailing again...