Archive for December, 2007

Retreat

Monday, December 31st, 2007

Only 500 nautical miles into the wind to get into the SW trades is the simple little task I set for ourselves. OK, the wind was still quite strong and yes, the tropical typhoon Melanie had just passed 2 days ago, but… Jes’ just writing this feels terribly stupid now and to cut a long painful experience short, we lasted 6 hours in 4 meter messy waves and strong gusty wind. BE was hammered by the steep waves so heavily that the timber ‘toe’ boards along the edge of the deck around the bow were ripped off by the water rushing past each time the nose dove into the water!

Above all and mostly due to the 1 knot plus current from the West, we weren’t able to gain any heights and started drifted eastwards past the Bali Straight out of which we came loosing over 20 miles. Only a couple of hours longer and we hadn’t been able to return. Mental note: BE is a fine lady but doesn’t like to go windward in a chop at all… but neither do I! So, let’s try the northern route direction Singapore and Phuket.

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The challenge is up!

Sunday, December 30th, 2007

The stunning Maledives are the goal. Let’s get out of the rain season and catch up with the milk run flotilla up in the north. Cocktails, sun, possibly Europe still this year and maybe a reunion with someone special, too ;-)

But how do we do that? January is the start of the NE Monsoon with the most heavy westerlies in the hole year plus the cyclone season in the Southern Indian Ocean close to Australia has just started. This will be one though ride, I knew.

And what about my parents who’ve just arrived to do some relaxed island cruising, sun bathing and snorkeling. Why not take them with you? Yes, that’s what we do! And I didn’t even have to convince them as they didn’t want me tackle these conditions on my own anyway. Mum and Dad both extend their holidays for another 3 weeks per text message! Sometimes you can only marvel how cool your parents can be.

Shopping for provisions same day, usual issues with visas and permits at the authorities (we had to clear out which means that we’re theoretically not allowed to stop in Indo any more) and we’re ready.

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Family Business

Monday, December 24th, 2007

Huebbe clan united again and not much has changed. Family is family. Good to have two skilled motivated workers aboard for all the overdue maintenance. Who says parents need to see the island or enjoy the beach when they can help their beloved son ;-) And aside all the work the weather has also changed completely. Whilst Dirk and Chloe enjoyed sunny days with light winds, we now have full-on monsoon with tropical downpours and gusty strong wind. Could almost sail into Kuta when the streets keep on getting flooded like that.

VIDEO: monsoon-rain.WMV

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Backyard Magic

Monday, December 24th, 2007

The workshop was mere 3 x 3 m with a beaten up roller shutter to the small backstreet where I sat on my scooter loaded with my brooken anchor winch plus 220V inverter. There was all kinds of stuff lying everywhere and just before I could think ‘maybe this is rather a place to replace horse shoes…’ I was surrounded by 8 people discussing the problem. No one really knew ar first that it was an anchor winch but that didn’t stop them to say after 5 min: ‘No problem, we can do this. Come back tomorrow’. Well, why not!

When I came back today I couldn’t believe it when I say both things fixed. No not just fixed, the anchor winch runs as good as new and for the inverter they even got parts from the main city an hour away.

These people rock! I am sure that the guys in the marine just 500m away would have taken 10 times longer, charged 5 times more and most of all would have whinged about how difficult it is. In Germany they probably would have tried to sell me a new one straight away. But not these fellow. They look after the local fishing boats. No money there but creativity and determination. My conclusion: ARAK for the entire crew and my faith in good skilled people fully restored.

…and beyond

Friday, December 21st, 2007

The stars seemed brighter in these nights although Orion smiling down on us from am akward angle. Strong currents at times right in our face making us go backwards and at others with us with BE happier then ever before. More things broke on BE, some we fixed. Planned destinations got out of reach because expectations never work. The ocean of Sundays whispering of endless opportunities during a watch on the foredeck. 1,5 months and the difference between a beautiful intermezzo or an attempt on the real life less ordinary…

VIDEO: VIDEO: here we go again
VIDEO: fun-with-chloe-and-stef.WMV

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Magic 10 000 nm

Wednesday, December 12th, 2007

BE has now travelled more than 10 000 nautical miles since leaving Melbourne. Proud I am of us ;-)