december 2012: thailand / australia

We sailed around Thailand in and out of marinas as Zinc was fitted with new equipment. We flew to Australia for Christmas.

THAILAND: PHUKET & SURROUNDS

BOAT. Zinc recovered from the lightening strike, slowly, but faster than we could ever have hoped. After seven days in the marina, the bare minimum of essential electrical equipment had been replaced — new depth sounder, anchor light, charging regulators — so we hastened to sail off and play at anchor while we awaited the remaining parts. Before we headed out, other non-essential equipment had also been fixed, but the list of pretty-important-items-not-working remained long — no fridge, no GPS, no auto-pilot, no wind instrument, no navigation lights, no radar. It was sort of fun though — we dug out from under the bed our faded, yellow, ancient-looking charts and plotted way-points; we licked our index fingers to check wind direction and speed; we hand steered. And, slowly, the parts were replaced; each few days we became a little more comfortable than we had been the day before.

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LIFE. Life is significantly more pleasurable at anchor than it is tied to a dock in a marina. In the backyard in Thailand there are:

…sometimes, (small, fat) waves…

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…sometimes, swings…

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…often, pretty limestone karst formations…

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…always, a pool…

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…always, a sandpit…

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…and, regrettably, too often for us this month there were pirates…

PIRATES. “What about pirates?” This is the question we are asked most — by strangers, friends, family; anyone and everyone asks us about pirates. I am more afraid of lightening — but everybody else seems more frightened for us about pirates. My reasoning for lightening trumping pirates in the fear factor stakes is as follows: Lightening is completely random; whenever you sail where thunder rumbles, you are at the mercy of the largely not-understood phenomenon that is lightening; on a sailing boat with a large metal pole sticking up in the air 18+ meters above the water line, you are a sitting duck. Pirates on the other hand are more predictable beasts; generally there are known regions for pirates — the Indian Ocean in the surrounds of Somalia currently being one such region — stay clear of these areas and you should be right. Of course though, even away from the pirate “hot spots”, your floating home might be invaded, just like your home in a “respectable” suburb in Australia might be — thems are the breaks. And in our case they were. Three times this month, our home was invaded, albeit by harmless and very very silly pirates — two Australians, two Russians, one Canadian and one American…

Pirate incident one. Time: 3am Saturday morning. Heard: man coughing. Found: one extremely drunk Australian — male, mid-twenties — hanging on to our anchor chain and prodder stay. Pirate seeking: a boat to do back-flips off + a tow to shore.

Pirate incident two. Time: 2pm Sunday afternoon. Heard: water slapping + Russian sweet talk. Found: one Russian couple kissing and canoodling whilst holding onto our dingy for support. Pirates seeking: a private place to rest.

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Pirate incident three. Time: 7.30pm Friday night. Heard: screaming. Found: one tired trio of backpackers — one Australia lass, one American lad, one Canadian lad — they had been swimming beside a large plastic kayak for 1.5 hours in the dark through a storm and against current. They had flipped the kayak by turning to marvel at the sunset. Pirates seeking: a place to rest + a drink of water + a tow to shore.

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BOAT KID. A boat kid = a happy kid

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…Presently, our boat kid loves the tender — there are tears if she misses pulling it up or down the beach.

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…She also loves jumping off the back steps.

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LIFE. Look closely; see the fellow base jumping…

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…before his parachute opens.

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FISHING With 1000+ boats like this…

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…netting the surrounds of Phuket…

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…this is how we choose to fish.

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LIFE. I am calling Phuket the best place in the world to be stranded with a child while repairs are made to a boat. There are loads and loads of things to do with children in Phuket, including visiting the Big Buddha…

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…and feeding the elephants

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If you need more ideas, click here to see a list of 16 things to do with children in Phuket.

BOAT KID. Willow is learning to duck dive

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…She seems to enjoy it

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LIFE. Late in December we tied Zinc to a dock, closed the hatches, packed a few bags and headed to the airport. Australia for Christmas…

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…via KL for a ride on the hotel carts and an airport photo-shoot, of course…

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One thought on “december 2012: thailand / australia

  1. Awesome blog! Is your theme custom made or did you download it
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