Tuesday, December 27, 2011

A Before and After - a very small part of some of my furniture renovation

I had inherited a hideous piece of furniture which consisted of 2 side cupboard bits with 3 drawers. In the middle (forming a big bulky angular piece of furniture) was a long swinging mirror with drawer sections on either side. Wish I had a taken a picture of it complete - but didn't. 

After it had been stripped I used the mirrow as a wall mirror on its own - newly varnished. Well that speaks for itself. As for the two separate drawer sections which I hacked off the centre piece......I basically removed the back and sides and brought it down to a bare skeleton as seen below. I put on new sides and new backing and then made a totally new middle section consisting of 3 shelves on which I could put 3 storage baskets. As the top of the new middle section would not have matched the drawer tops I decided to give it a bit of colour and tile it instead. 

And this is the finished result of which ''I am well pleased''!

Monday, December 26, 2011

Quite a good video though a bit repetitive.


Christmas Cracker Jokes

They are the corniest jokes one can get, yet I always look forward to them! Christmas cracker jokes!

Q: What goes 99 clump 99 clump?
A: A centipede with a wooden leg.

Q: What do you  call a 3 legged donkey?
A: A Wonkey.

Q: What do you call a deer with no eyes?
A: No idea!

Q: What is green and turns red at the push of a button.
A: A frog in a liquidiser.

Q: What sort of shoes do frogs wear in the summer?
A: Open toed sandals.

Q: What do angry mice send each other at Christmas?
A: A cross mouse card.

OK think that is all anybody can take until next year!

Happy New Year to you all.

Wednesday, December 21, 2011

Early Christmas Present

Came back from abroad on Saturday and went down to my garage to get the car out and the above is what I saw in front of me. I was totally speechless! My dear hubbie was laughing and I still didn't know what to say (that makes a change I suppose!!) As we were having wind this week my family thought I should have my Christmas present early so I could try it out. I tried it out on Monday - briefly cos the wind died - result.......brilliant. So light under the feet, stable and has a lovely floaty feeling jumping (if I am jumping with the least effort then it must be a good board!). Board is a Starboard Evo 81L 2011 edition which I find the perfect size for me in the conditions we have with onshore winds.
Today blowing gale force 8 West to South West and meant to be veering North West to North by the evening - AND I AM GOING TO MISS IT ALL. Have guests arriving in Gozo so that is obviously priority. Just hope the ferry is running. Unfortunately Christmas day is going to be good too with North Easterlies into the bay and probably big waves...........which I will also miss since I am cooking Christmas lunch. Oh well, let us hope 2012 will give us lots of wind to look forward to.


Friday, December 02, 2011

New Recruiting & Career Networking Site

Above: Stefan (2nd from R) onboard Juno at the start of the 2011 Rolex Middle Sea Race
 (Photo: Francesca Vincenti)

Keen dinghy sailor, yachtie and windsurfer, Stefan Debattista, has recently launched a new recruitment and career networking website which can be found on http://www.8am.com.mt/
There is a section for Professionals and another for Recruiters. To get to know all the ins and outs of the SITE have a good browse. It looks to me to be a great site for both those looking for future employees and those actually seeking a job.

CHECK IT OUT   http://www.8am.com.mt/

Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Past Photos

Really missing all my stolen camera equipment right now. So decided to just put up some random shots taken in the past year or so - nostalgia for my camera/s.

A Lampuka - our national fish so to speak. In English known as Dolphin Fish

John doing a vulcan during one of our gale force days in Ghallis

Sherborne Abbey in Dorset England. Taken back in June 2011. A beautiful building inside and out

The amazing roof of Sherborne Abbey

A slightly older photo of John airborne at Torri with Tommy looking on

Taken form near the lighthouse above Ghasri, Gozo looking down towards Ghammar and Ta'Pinu Basilica

Looking down from the lighthouse and over toward the hill of Ghammar which is right in front of our house San Pupulju

Gamblu riding a great wave in Ghallis

Gamblu - Ghallis

Gamblu and John swimming ontop of the wave!

John sailing switchstance

Martin and Steve Meachen on 'Mischief' on a perfect summer's day. That day was probably the best day of my summer. Great day out with some great sailing, great food, and (dare I say it!) great company!

Sunday, November 20, 2011

Matthew Mirabelli's Latest Kitesurfing Video

Matt is one of our local kitesurfers and is a professional photographer. Go onto his WEBSITE to see some of his brilliant work. Below is the link to his latest kitesurfing video he took on Friday down at the beach.


Thursday, November 10, 2011

A Boat Could Mean Anything that Floats!

My good friend HORSEY puts up loads of amazing pictures of an assortment of watercraft. Below are some funny watercraft I thought worth posting.

I would call this a ''boys toys'' water craft

If you live in a 'prone to flooding' zone I suggest you keep an engine handy in a corner of the house

A left over from the 60's era

I suppose this beats scrapping your car

Well the picture says it all!

Friday, October 28, 2011


ARTIE crew from L to R: Peter Valentino, Jan Rossi, Lee Satariano (owner and co-skipper), Kurt Casapinta, Isaac Borg, Matthew Gusman, Christian Ripard (co-skipper) and John Cachia.
Picture courtesy of the RMSR:Kurt Arrigo

Wednesday, October 26, 2011


ARTIE trying to make the most of the light winds and lumpy seas on the way to the finish

ARTIE sailing down the coast heading for the finish

Lee and Christian - skippers of Artie coming towards the finish line

In a total daze and still cannot believe that our lovely lads actually made it to first place overall, first in class and first Maltese boat in after completing quite a gruelling Rolex Middle Sea Race. I had really thought there was no chance, and only on arriving down at the yacht club to see them in over the finish line did I realise they were still in for a chance. There was a lovely atmosphere down at the club's waterfront as the tension gradually built up the closer we got to the time limit for the arrival of AOC ROCKALL. Once that time limit had passed and ROCKALL was still nowhere to be seen there were shouts of joy, congratulations, bottle corks popping celebrating a Maltese victory - and what a victory! A very 'proud mum' moment for me seeing my son (bowman) part of such a great team.
ROCKALL were, for them, the boat to beat throughout the race and really kept them on their toes throughout. It was a very nice sight to see the ARTIE team go down to greet the ROCKALL crew as they came in. Good sportsmenship all round.

Having said all that I have to compliment the rest of our Maltese teams who all did exceptionally well. As I type, in the first seven overall positions five of the boats are Maltese boats. This must be a record for Malta to have so many local boats in the first few placings. JARU did really well since they only decided to compete in the race a couple of days before !

Well done all!

All photos taken from RMSR website

Who Will Be First Maltese Boat In??

RAN - as things stand right now I think they may have a good chance of winning the overall - all depends on whether the wind picks up a bit around our shores. At the moment it is all guess work who will actually win the overall prize.  Pic: Kurt Arrigo for RMSR

Plagued by light wind conditions Class 3 and 4 yachts are now approaching the Comino Channel on their final leg back home. ARTIE is really pushing to be first Maltese boat back home - quite a coveted prize - but they have quite a few Maltese contenders hot on their heels. They are still pushing as hard as they can to increase their lead to enable them to pass AOC ROCKALL on corrected time. It has been a slow race and now it has become nailbiting as they sail in towards the finish line. All our Maltese crews have done amazingly well racing against such a high calibre of world sailor and I know I speak on behalf of many many locals when I say we are proud of them all and have shown visiting sailors that they are tough competition on the water.

For the latest news report on the race you press on this LINK.  

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

RMSR2011 Tough Battle Ahead

AOC ROCKALL is leading on the overall positions right now as they head towards the next landmark of Lampedusa. She is giving our lovely lads a real run for their money! BUT having said that I think it is more our lads giving THEM a run for their money!! I personally think our Maltese sailors, as a whole, have alot to be proud of cos they are all placing pretty well racing against some very top competition.

Unfortunately COMANCHE RAIDER had rudder problems and had to retire from the race and go into Favignana

ARTIE - the boat that has our full support . They came second overall last year just missing the coveted first place by a mere 26 minutes behind LUCKY. Right now they stand in 2nd position behind ROCKALL overall. ROCKALL increased their lead on corrected time by roughly 20 mins (by my calculations so stand to be corrected!) between the checkpoints of Favignana and Pantelleria.

OTRA VEZ is hard on the heals of ARTIE. They have a broken bowsprit - now it remains to be seen if they are going to need to use it as they are heading upwind on the present leg.

All photos taken off the RMSR website


RAN who is heading for the finish and will be 2nd over the line

SPEEDY - photos by Kurt Arrigo official photographer for the Rolex Middle Sea Race

Most boats have now rounded the next check point of Favignana off the West coast of Sicily and provisional overall positions have shifted. Happy to see that ARTIE has gained some ground and is now standing 2nd in the prov overall table and 2nd in their class just behind AOC ROCKALL who is going to be a tough one to beat. Due to the very light wind conditions they have been having throughout the race, it has been very close between boats right the way through but now Favignana has been rounded the excitement is setting in even more.

Looks like another day totally glued to the TRACKER!!!

Monday, October 24, 2011

RMSR2011 Stromboli Rounded

The famous Middle Sea Race landmark of Stromboli which erupts every 20 minutes. Photo by Kurt Arrigo

Practically all the fleet have now rounded Stromboli whilst Esimit has just rounded Pantelleria and is heading towards Lampedusa. Overall it is still looking like Esimit is going to win the race so it is now the battle for the classes. In class 4, which is of particular interest to me since it is the class my son races is and also many good friends, provisional results on rounding Stromboli are so close that there are just a couple of minutes between the first 15 boats on corrected time! That's how close it is! Looking at an update on the tracker I am happy to see that ARTIE seems to have progressed position wise in the fleet but there is a long way to do go and if light winds persist positions will constantly change.
In class 3 the first 4 boats on rounding Stromboli on corrected time are Maltese boats.

Sunday, October 23, 2011






All photos taken by Kurt Arrigo and can be seen on www.regattanews.com

RMSR 2011 Messina to Stromboli Leg


Click on the link above to get onto the RMSR tracker to follow the race. The bulk of the fleet are heading for Stromboli tonight where they will be given a spectacular ''fireworks'' show as always. Meanwhile ESIMIT is heading towards Favignana and should be back home by tomorrow evening latest.

RMSR 2011 Update 1

MEDSPIRIT leaving Malta and setting out towards Sicily yesterday - photo curtesy of Rolex:Kurt Arrigo 

Follow updated news on this LINK

Saturday, October 22, 2011

2011 Rolex Middle Sea Race Start

Look at this LINK to see the start of the Rolex Middle Sea Race this morning.

Rolex Middle Sea Race Start

VIKESHA II  photo by Kurt Arrigo

The 2011 edition of the Rolex Middle Sea Race got off to a slow start this morning with dull stormy skies and light southerly breezes. ARTIE, unfortunately, had a bad start crossing the line around mid fleet in the first group of starters at 11.00am. Nevertheless, they soon caught up and by the time they rounded the marker off Pembroke and headed out to sea towards Capo Passero they were already leading the entire fleet by a good margin. Once the the large 80-100' boats had started they soon caught up and overtook the rest of the fleet and as I type ESIMIT and RAN have actually passed Capo Passero with the rest of the fleet between the Cape and half way across the channel. The wind is light so progress is pretty slow but the average boat speed seems to be around 6.5knots.

Unfortunately, this year I was unable to take any photos on the start since last night all my camera gear was stolen. It will be sorely missed and I cannot foresee buying anything in the near future. So I am going to have to rely on using other people's photographs for the time being.

The race can be closely followed on the Middle Sea Race TRACKER .

Thursday, October 20, 2011

RMSR Coastal Race

The start of the coastal race which is more or less a warm up for the Rolex Middle Sea Race which starts in the Grand Harbour (Malta) this coming Saturday. The race took the yachts around the small island of Filfla.

ESIMIT took line honours in this race and also was overall winner on handicap.

VIKESHA II - an XP44 -  came 2nd overall in the coastal race and is skippered and owned by Oleg Evdokimenko and co-skippered by Maltese skipper Timmy Camilleri

All photos taken by our local expert Kurt Arrigo. Kurt takes the most amazing photos and specialises in sailing photography. He is a keen sailor himself and has published a lovely book which I am happy to have a copy of. Take a look at his website.

Friday, October 14, 2011

2012 Rolex Middle Sea Race

Last year's overall winner ''LUCKY'' coming through the Comino Channel on its way home towards the finish

''ARTIE'' (local Maltese boat and crew) came 2nd overall after a nail biting race and finish just missing a first overall placing by around 26 minutes

''SEAWOLF'' has become a very familiar face on the RMSR and is back again this year to take on the challenge of this great race

Once again the Rolex Middle Sea Race will be starting off from the Grand Harbour in Valletta next Saturday 22nd October 2011. It will, no doubt, be a spectacle to watch with the original and historic back drop of the bastions and surrounding creeks in this natural historic harbour.
There are, at present, 80 entrants of which are many well known names of skippers and yachts.

This year yachts are moored at the Grand Harbour Marina in Birgu and a couple of pontoons have also been laid off the Yacht Club in Ta'Xbiex for the smaller classed yachts.

The RMSR website has a tracker which enables enthusiasts to follow the race closely as they make their way around the most interesting offshore race in the Mediterranean (if not the world).

Tuesday, September 27, 2011

A Place to Go Back To + Windsurfing Gear

Mount Etna in the distance. Just before we arrived in Sicily it was spewing quite a bit of ash and the day before some flights were delayed or cancelled. It also had a small snowfall whilst we there, just enough for a small section of the top of the volcano to be covered in snow.

The beach at Marispica. This beach starts further down the coast and goes on for miles and miles. First class place to windsurf or kitesurf - during winter they get some pretty big waves. There is also a brilliant windsurfing destination a few hours drive to the West at Puzziteddu or Mazara del Vallo.

More Pics of Sicily (Click on pics to get full view)

Lovely farmhouse which seems to be in use still at the beginning of our walk through the valley in Cava d'Ispica

The inhabited caves (as they were) in Cava d'Ispica. The above one is the actual sleeping accommodation at the flour mill which was still in use until the late 1950's. I loved the red baby's cradle - it made so much sense hanging just above the bed.............baby crying at night just stick your foot in the air and give it a rock!

I am not very good when it comes to flora and fauna but think this is a Frangipani flower. They smell out of this world and brings back memories of Bali.

This was our entrance gate/drive to Villa Tromabdore where we were staying.

The pool area at the back of Villa Trombadore, Cava d'Ispica.


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