From Amorgos, we set a course almost due west for the next hidden island: Iraklia. The wind dies; then a sea breeze fills in from the south, giving us a glorious beam reach. In the harbor, there are a few visiting yachts, but the small village is sleepy, with a couple of tavernas, a small market, a sandy beach and little else. At dusk, we amuse ourselves by watching an old man in a pram fish for dinner while his wife issues orders from shore. We can’t understand her, but deduce that if he returns empty-handed, he’s in trouble. Kostas checks the weather forecast; thunderstorms are predicted by midday tomorrow, so we decide to leave before dawn to beat the weather to Kea, a long passage north, but necessary for a favorable point of sail in predicted strong northerlies as we leave the Cyclades and sail west toward Athens in the following days. It is a long morning, with frequent rainless squalls and changeable winds; by afternoon, the sun is shining as a lighthouse welcomes us to Agios Nikolaou. It is blowing hard, but we Med-moor securely. We grab a taxi to the mountaintop village to see Kea’s ancient and impressive stone lion, a rock sculpture believed to have been carved in about 600 B.C. Cars are prohibited inside the village perimeter; the streets are winding and narrow. Everywhere are breathtaking views of the surrounding sea. As we walk, two men pass by on donkeys. Later, a dramatic sunset, dinner at a seaside taverna and dueling fish stories top off the night.