Day 5: Panarea SKYY Vodka raft party

August 8, 2012

I was the first boat to leave Stromboli the next day so we could make a pit stop at Basiluzzo, which is just northeast of Panarea. The island is lined with several nice grottos to anchor in and have a nice swim around the rocks. Afterwards we went into Panarea for a quick lunch before heading to the raft party.  We normally hold the raft at Lisca Bianca but this week the crowds were really out in full force. We settled with holding the raft at Dattilo, which is in between Panarea and Lisca Bianca. There were already several boats in the area so we needed to be careful when putting all of our boats together. One of the catamarans made the mistake of parking side by side with the crew boat, which was not only the music source but also supplied the entire raft with Skyy Vodka drinks.

We decided to place the speakers right on top of the catamaran’s high cabin to project across the rest of the raft more effectively. When the music turned on and drinks started flowing, everyone on the raft flocked to the catamaran. We must have had at least 60 people on the boat and the waterline was submerged a good 10 c.m.  As usual the party lasted from 5pm until sunset. Due to a strong cross-current when the boats released their stern lines it sent the boats downstream into a spiral.  Boats quickly picked up their anchors in a rather chaotic fashion leaving three boats in a tangled mess. Unfortunately my boat was one of them.  I worked with the other skippers to try to figure out where to maneuver our boats in order to get free. No matter how many times we spun around each other or let more line out we could not separate. In a last ditch effort I tried to tie a fender to the end of my anchor line but with the current sweeping the other 50 foot boat across my bow it was far too difficult to hold. I threw the rope overboard and decided I’d return in the morning when the daylight would help me salvage my anchor. In a stroke of luck, when the other boat lifted their anchor our chain was hanging off of it. Since I had left for the port by then, the other crew had the pleasant task of manually picking up 50 meters of rope and 85 meters of chain plus an anchor with their hands. The next morning my crew and I made a point to thank the other crew for their hard work with gifts in the form of rum and wine. Oddly enough rum and wine happen to be a good fix for many things on The Yacht Week.