Sunday, June 13, 2010

Lattakia, Syria

Passage to Lattakia, Syria June 3

After some last minute delays with passports, we left Mersin at 6pm. For a change, there was a good breeze. We sailed close-haul, with 10 knots of wind from the south-west, doing 5-6 knots, bouncing on 1 meter swells. We would have been happier if we had left in early afternoon to take advantage of the breeze, but things seldom work out the way you want. The good wind lasted for exactly 2 hours, and then it was motoring time again. At 22:00PM we were informed by the earlier yachts that a large fishing fleet was laying nets directly on our route, so we all took a detour and gave the fishermen a wide berth. No one wants to get their propeller tangled by nets!

Syria June 4-8
The cradle of civilization where agriculture and metallurgy were invented. The cross road where the East meets the West. The last strong hold of the Crusaders. A place with 5,000 years of continuous history, but a country barely a few generations old. Drab cities with uniformly run-down building from the sixties. Apartment blocks of stark concrete, exterior paint is a luxury not to be bothered with. Buildings half finished, the bottom half lived-in, the top floors still with exposed steel rods and concrete posts, waiting for building funds that might be available someday….or, one of the options to evade paying property taxes. A ‘rogue state’ deemed by some countries, but people seemingly living in peace and there’s little outward sign of police presence. Christians and Muslims living in harmony. These are one’s impression of Syria. But of course one come to Syria mainly to visited historical sites, many of which are from Roman times or older.

More pictures can be seen at our photo album at:

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