Ahoi! In Greifswald, we have spent 3.5 weeks to prepare us and our 10 m sailing boat for our family trip. Thanks to my parents and my sister, who took care of our two big girls for a couple of days even, we had a rather efficient start on equipping our new home.
Even in rainy weather, us two adults, plus our almost 5-, 3-year, and 8-months old daughters, we actually feel comfortable with the little space we have: 2 bedrooms, a small kitchen and dining area, bathroom with shower. Climbing onto and off the yacht demanded some practice and is a good exercise, not only for the kids ;oP
Especially Detlef, Sebastian, and Antje from the yacht outfitter helped us so much with equipping our yacht. They assisted all of our shipping issues way beyond „a little favour“. Besides, it was fun to negotiate prices with them ;oP
Attractions in Greifswald: Despite rain, we spent a good time in the animal park. Another day, we smelled and tasted herbs, black current, and peas in the botanical garden. When my parents visited us once more, we visited the dome. We were surprised to find a kids‘ corner there with books, toys, dolls. Another day, we found shelter in the foyer of the dome while a wedding was taking place. Our girls were so impressed by the gorgeous dresses: „Can I also marry?!“
We liked the marina in Greifswald very much. The sanitary facilities were super clean, spacious, and not too far away. Staff and other sailors were so friendly. Often, we had long chitchats on the pier. We felt like part of a big family.
Ulla and Jochen from Berlin even let us turn an uncomfortable situation into a pleasant dinner. Although we had scratched their boat a little, we ended up at the restaurant ‚Goldmarie‘, collecting information from these experienced sailors. Moreover, the dinner place Ulla and Jochen had suggested was a great experience. In a quiet court yard, we enjoyed a nice summer evening with fruity ‚Curry Wurst‘, goat cheese salad with blueberries, and a blend of fish and mashed potatoes with vegetables in tomato sauce. The big girls loved their huge glasses of mango-maracuja and banana-cherry juice *yummy* Magda and Erna took some time to warm or wake up, but then they even sat on Ulla‘s lap and hang on to Jochen‘s arms, attempting some kind of summersault =oD
After half of a week in Greifswald, luck really striked us: Ulla introduced Alan to the sailing teacher Paul. Already the very same night, he came by. By sharing his experiences, he convinced us that a trip to the North of the Baltic Sea would be much more family-oriented and beginner-friendly compared to a journey to the Mediterranean Sea *relief*
Paul’s great helpfulness even went far beyond consulting: He offered us parking lessons and on top of that child care by his wife Tunia. Our girls could play together with their two sons who were of the same age – awesome, too good to be true!!!
The child care was really a great substitute for the many months of missing Kindergarten fun. Also, the kids were not bored by our busy preparations. Tunia left no desires unfulfilled: In their RV and the large garden, she offered toys, trees to climb, a trampoline, healthy snacks (cherries, game sausage!, water melon), lunch, nap time, sweet treats, … and even some biology class. Their dog Ambra had just given birth to five cute puppies. Erna was in love with Ambra. She stroked her soft fur and even hugged her whenever they met *sweet *
Paul’s and Tunia‘s support was simply priceless: They gave us valuable tips for sailing with kids, such as suitable harbours, and for planning tours. During practices, Paul didn’t get tired of explaining manoeuvers, and answering all of our questions. They got us a car seat for Wilma to be securely separated from us when we both need to work on the boat. They even helped us deal with the grouchy harbour master and gave us advice how to appease a boat owner in a phone call, whose „baby“ we damaged during one parking practice *incredibly nice* They gave us more than we would ever dare ask for!