Day 296-308 – 20. February – 4. March 2014

The last two weeks I was on the boat at the marina in Tel Aviv. Most of the time relaxing and walking around the city. Tel Aviv is a very nice and active city with many beautiful beaches.

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For two days we had some other German couchsurfer with us and one American for one night.IMG_1878

One big project I had to finish:

In North Cyprus I noticed a crack in the casing of my Rohloff speed hub.

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When I  had to change the back wheel in Odessa they put the spokes back in a wrong pattern. So it was just a matter of time this would happen.

I contacted Rohloff and they send me a replacement casing to Larnaca. It took only five days and I had to pay only for the shipping. That´s what I call service!

In Tel Aviv I had to remove the spokes, change the casing and put back the spokes. It took only a few hours but I had to find a bike shop to center the wheel.

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After Elad made some calls he found a very good bike shop about 30 km outside of Tel Aviv.

I took my back wheel and went there by train, bus and the last 3 km on foot. Milo the mechanic centered my wheel and Eyal, the owner showed me his workshop. He produces his own bike frames and uses only the best components. They are also the only official importer of Rohloff hubs in Israel. (www.chernichovsky.com)

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The next day I took a 40 km test drive to see if the wheel was true. A few days later I cycled  to the bike shop to service the rest of the bike. Milo changed the barring of the crank arm, serviced my brakes and I got a new original Rohloff chain tensioner. Hopefully everything is fine and last for the next 10.000km.

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Day 295 – 19. February 2014

After a really needed sleep we woke up and planned to sail to Tel Aviv.

A friend of Elad was coming with us and while we waited for his arrival I was looking at the other boat at the marina.

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Some nice established gentlemen invited me for a tea and listened to my story. We had a nice conversation and they offered me help to find a boat back to Turkey.

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After Elad´s friend Roni arrived we had breakfast. We left the harbour and set sail.

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Today the wind was excellent. Steady northern winds of 15-25 Kts. After we got out of the Haifa bay we shifted the sails to so called butterfly and had a very smooth and fast ride to Tel Aviv.

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It took us only 10 hours with an average of 5,5 Kts to reach our destination.

After the sunset we had an amazing view on the skyline of Tel Aviv.

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Roni had to go back to Haifa and we said good buy. He picked the best day to take a day off and sail with us.

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Day 295: 55,17 Nm (102,17 km) sailing  all: 9803 km

Day 292-294 – 16.-18. February 2014

We prepared everything to sail to Israel. The police told us, because it was Sunday, that the custom probably would not come and we have to wait till the next day.

In the evening Elad got a call saying that the custom officer showed up and we could leave. It was already 7pm but we decided to go anyway.

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At 7:30pm we left the harbour and started our journey to Israel.

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We set sail but the wind was not very strong so we only made about 3 Nm per hour during the night.

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The next day the wind picked up a little bit and we had an average of 3,5-4 kts.

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The second night was also clear and not very cold. Elad and I divided the watch in 3 hour shifts so everybody had some rest.

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The next morning we were 40 Nm from Haifa. Because we were not able to make it during customs operation hours to Tel Aviv, we decided to go to Haifa.

20 Nm to Haifa the Israeli Navy intercepted our boat to check us out.

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Before we entered the harbor two police boats came and escorted us to a special customs peer.

About 10 people waited for us to inspected our boat and ask a lot of questions. Finally I got my passport back and we were free to go.

We relocated the boat and stayed in Haifa for the night.

Later a friend of Elad picked us up and drove us to the center where we had a dinner and a beer.

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„Welcome to Israel !”

Day 292-294: 163,4 NM (302,26 km) sailing  all: 9700 km

Day 281-291 – 5.-15. February 2014

The weather was finally good enough to sail to Larnaca.

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At 1 pm we left the harbor and set sail. It took us 26 hours to reach our destination.

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The wind was mostly good with some low or no wind phases.

Eland and I took turns steering the boat so everybody had some rest during the night.

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After a fairly pleasant night we had a good breakfast and in the afternoon we reached the marina of Larnaca.

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The next week we spend relaxing, and waiting for some packages I was expecting. I could send them to the German guy from the hotel we stayed when we were in Larnaca.

One day Eland and I took a bus to Nicosia to see the  town and to kill some time.

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Finally I received all my post and we had to wait another two days for suitable weather to sail to Israel.

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Day 281-282: 89,26 NM (165,31 km) sailing  all: 9398 km

Day 277-280 – 1.-4. February 2014

In the morning I went shopping for our trip to Paphos. After we finished all preparation we set sail.

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We started in the afternoon and planed to sail trough the night in order to reach Paphos the next morning.

At the beginning the wind was not to strong and it was perfect to get into sailing again.

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After the sunset the wind was week but was getting stronger during the night. We had winds up to 25 kts and the boat was at its max speed of 6-7 kts.

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Elad and I took shifts, so we could rest for 2 hours.

In the morning we reached the harbour and had a place between two big yachts. Because the harbour is not very protected against wind and waves we relocated to a better spot.

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The harbour and its facilities were not very good, so we decided to leave as early as possible. We had to wait three days, because the weather was not suitable for us to go to Larnaca.

Most of the time we sat on the boat or went to a cafe to have an internet connection.

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Day 277: 52,32 NM (96,90 km) sailing   all: 9233 km