Monthly Archives: September 2008

Pregnant from Greece

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Back from sailing the Ionian Sea. A week with the perfect combination of sailing, learning, ouzing (which is the verbal form of drinking Ouzo – soon to be found in the Webster dictionary), dining and some nice and spectacular variations in the weather.

Now I am trained in anchoring the Greek small and shallow harbours. I have a better understanding of the influence of sea and islands on wind, weather, rain and windwhirls. My love for the easy way of living around the Middle Sea has been revived – call it Greek, Turkish, Italian I don’t care, just call it ancient (“Wow John, I really had an ancient weekend last week” ).

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Is this ancient feeling – as I will call it from now – the mix of the eating fèta, olives, fresh fish, the drinking of ouzo’s and good coffee or beong in this climate: sun, wind, islands offering the refreshing dives into the sea?

On top of that I do know now how it feels to be pregnant.

So many ideas burbled this week inside my stomach or better my virtual womb about ancient places; ancient babes, experiences and the possible trips & itenaries – the first being more the physical thing the latter more metaphysical. And the enormous urge to give birth to all of this ASAP. No normal working day at the office anymore.

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The first of my births will be posting the logs of the trip across Lefkas, Kalamos and Ithaca with some stories about the islands, a lot of pictures and off course the full Google Earth integration for which I am famous now ;-).

But the most remarkable thing of this week, one of things I am most happy with, would be that I might have found my Argo… I could have found my ship to sail the Ancient Coasts of the Mediterrean to find my Holy Grail. So much more fun when all things fit together.

But first things first, coming weeks I will give birth to the posts about Lefkas, Kalamos, Sivota, Vasiliki, Frikes and Vathi on Meganisi, the cities in the playground of my old friend Odysseus aka Ulysses.

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On va rouler

Bought the marine chart (Greece | Ionian | The Inland Sea G121) for sailing around in the Lefkas area next week.

Published by Imray Tetra, so probably there are some copyright on the picture below, so please don’t tell them and buy your carts from them :-)

As I know the area already – I have sailed there 2 times earlier – every place on the chart provides me a little nice electrical twinkle…

Ancient Babes: Nefertiti

Ancient Babe Nefertiti

The iconic bust of Nefertiti, discovered in the workshop of Tuthmosis by Ludwig Borchardt, part of the Aegyptisches Museum Berlin collection

Only one woman can claim to be the first babe of mankind: Nefertiti.

She lived from circa 1370 BC until around 1330 BC and her name roughly translates to “The Beautiful One is come”. And to be honest, I don’t think the people did mind waiting zillion years of evolution for such a Baywatch babe avant la lettre, would you?

She was married to Pharaoh Amenhotep IV, who was later known as Akhenaten. Akhenaten ruled ancient Egyptian society in the 13th century B.C. and has put its mark on history by casting aside the pharaonic pantheon of gods in favor of a single sun deity. Quite an achievement, almost what the Roman Emperor Constantinus did for Christianity. The only minor thing was that the old religion was restored after his death.

The marriage was

Nefertiti's figure

Stature of Nefertiti also to be found in the Aegyptisches Museum Berlin collection

fruitful (although he was married at least to another 5 women) and she gave birth to six daughters:

  • Meritaten: Before year one or the very beginning of year one (1356 BC)
  • Meketaten: Year 1 or three (1349 BC)
  • Ankhesenpaaten: Year unknown
  • Neferneferuaten Tasherit: Year 6 (1344 BC)
  • Neferneferure: Year 9 (1341 BC).
  • Setepenre: Year 11 (1339 BC).

Funny thing to start the counting of years with each new Pharaoh and such a nice thing thing for eternal youth.

Through Ankhesenpaaten, also known as Ankhesenamen, the mother-in-law of the famous Pharaoh Tutankhamun.

The strange thing – at least to our current western culture – was that Ankhesenpaaten and Tutankhamun shared the same father. But there is more. This guy (the father) later married the younger sister of Ankhesenpaaten. It is not clear to me if this happened when Nefertiti was still alive. At least we can say that Pharaohs had a way to go with woman. So where is the value of being an Ancient Babe?

I have studied the books

Nefertiti Flower

to find a clue about the origin of the name as it is still unknown. Many others have researched the ancient books and didn’t find a thing. My philosophy is however to keep it simple and thanks to modern technology I might have found the final clue… and luckily – au contraire to the lady herself – the flower is still for sale.

While researching this subject

I found that a yacht was called after her to sail the Americas Cup… Nefertiti came very close to defending the America’s Cup in 1962 but unfortunately didn’t make it. Not believing in coincidences, I am sure this yacht contains somehow a clue about the Holy Grail I’m looking for…

Americas cup yacht Nefertiti

Further readings:

Being the first babe of the world known to humankind, you are an inspiration to a lot of people. As always as well to the good, as to the bad. More on Queen Nefertiti can be found by checking out the following:

The link to the Egyptian Museum and Papyrus Collection in Berlin, Germany Always more to be found on Wikipedia Also the divine Gods were inspired by Queen Nefertiti, the fourth album of Miles Davis Walk like an egyptioan... Walk like Queen Nefertiti Nefertiti Jones is a full time Actress / Beauty and Size 7 Fit Model located in NYC

One final last note… a thing you have to be aware of… never ever try to Google on a Nefertiti Piercing…

Hiswa Surprise

Yesterday I went to the “Hiswa te water” – they claim to be the largest boat show of Europe. Although my original plan was just picking up some stuff and have a quick look on the sailing yachts to continue my dreaming, some people have just all the luck…

Brunel/Sunergy Teaser

Within 15 minutes after entrance I was invited for sailing on the Brunel/Sunergy with Hans Bouscholte as the Skipper.

For the people unknown to these names, this combination (ship and skipper) took part in the first leg of the “The Whitbread Round The World Race” (currently known as the “Volvo Oceanrace”) in 1997-1998.

This yacht race is one of the heaviest challenges in the sailing world and takes place every 3 year. It consists of 9 legs around the world with over 30,000 Miles to sail in around 8 months. The conditions are spartan where the shit literally hits the ceiling (this is at least the information presented to me by a trustworthy source). Temperatures vary in this race from minus 2 degrees Celsius in the Southern Ocean to around 40+ degrees, waves of over 30m and winds over 60 knots (or no wind at all, and that will make the racer crazy!). Is it typical to humankind that people are dying to do this almost on a voluntary basis? Does this behaviour also happen within other species?

It is the speed I needAnyway, I was invited on board and sailed a leg outside the IJmuiden Marina and the speed and feeling is amazing! With around 20 knots of wind the yacht easily gets a speed of 12 knots under normail sails. Imagine the speed under full sail. The top speed Hans Bouscholte told, was 36 knots in the Gulf of Biskaje when surfing the waves with ruime wind.

Everyone was able to take the helm and well… uhm, now I have sailed the Brunel/Sunergy, well, uhm, er, I think I can sail the Volvo Oceanrace :-)

All in all a great experience and luckily I did have a camera with me (although I would have preferred my Nikon) and below my pictures.

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