Flash Warnings for Travelers

Photo by Armando Valerio

Boats in the Med, even the big ones, are staying firmly in their berths in ports, not moving because of the hair-raising cost of fuel for boats. As a result, hundreds of arriving yachts up and down the Med can’t get into ports and are having to “sit out” and take their tenders in to St-Tropez, Cannes, Cap Ferrat and all the best Italian ports. If you plan to charter a boat, keep fuel costs in mind because the charterer pays for the fuel as well as the boat.

One owner of a lot of charter boats has them all in berths rented for the entire season in places most in demand like St-Tropez, so even the big bribers are not getting in. It is quite a sight, all those boats sitting at anchor way, way out from Med ports, everybody onboard peering at the ports through binoculars! Even the Russians are sitting out. Maybe they will buy the ports!!

It is a sobering thought; there are so many 300- and 400-foot boats coming out from Holland, Germany, Italy, that are going to require so much fuel just to get from one port to another. The airlines are looking to add fuel surcharges and you can bet charter rates will be going up.

The restaurants and shops in ports are jumping. It’s really not bad sitting out – it is cooler. Except that when the winds blow you rock and roll 24 hours a day. One friend tells me that the big drugstore in Cannes stocked up on seasick remedies for the summer and is almost sold out.

The new hot fashion look in all those hip places is the long skirt or the long dress. It is coming next season to the big cities so it is naturally seen in St-Tropez and Capri first. Very cool and comfy – nobody’s wearing much underneath.

I am told by someone who should know that there is a very smart jewelry thief specializing in gold jewelry and wallets mostly on the French coast. Insiders call him the “Gold Digger” and he is a master at digging into handbags. Women are not zipping their bags, hanging them on the restaurant chairs, tossing them over their shoulders in crowded shops. I am told he is very well dressed and looks as if he “belongs.”

Take care – this is an edgy summer in the Med.


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