Sailfeed
October 5th

Ugly weather off the coast of Malaysia

Posted by // October 5, 2014 // COMMENT (12 Comments)

Cruising, ,

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Well, that was unpleasant.

There are the beautiful days of white sandy beaches and gin-clear water, and then there are the days when you have your ass handed to you by the weather.

We spent just over a week knocking off a list of projects from rig tuning to galvanizing in Penang. It’s probably our last marina stay until we arrive in South Africa, more than a year from now, and some things are just easier to do at a dock when the boat is relatively motionless and the fresh water runs freely. But we were ready to get out and back in our happy place, rocking gently at anchor.…

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October 4th

Little Whaleback

Earlier this summer, while stopping over at the Goslings in northwestern Casco Bay, I noticed there was a small mooring field just off the north end of Little Whaleboat Island. It had never occurred to me to put in there, and I could find nothing about it in any cruising guide, or in my annual Maine Island Trail Association guide (which can be a great resource, by the way, when looking for obscure islands to visit). So of course I was intrigued. Late this past week, as I headed out on what will probably be my last solo overnight on the bay this year, I thought I might as well check it out.…

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October 2nd

Understanding engine overheating problems

Posted by // October 2, 2014 // COMMENT (1 Comment)

Cruising, Maintenance,

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Why is the engine overheating? Our Yanmar engine’s shrill alarm was the jarring start to some stressful hours during the last five months, and we asked that question many times. The answer was not one root cause, but more likely a series of related events, as a domino effect of different issues cascaded. I’ve written about the painful side of this before, but less so the final diagnosis and fix, so this is for cruisers like Mark, Lynn & Rick, Gary, and others who reached out and asked to learn from our experience.

It all started when tried to fix something that wasn’t broken.…

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September 30th

At Home in Papua New Guinea

Posted by // September 30, 2014 // COMMENT (3 Comments)

Cruising, ,

I´ve unpacked the bags and stowed the suitcases. No more waiting around for visas, no more airplane rides – we´re home now, and I plan to be sessile for the foreseeable future. The island is beautiful, our neighbours are friendly, and I have no reason to move off my porch.

Except, a troop of kids are marching up my driveway. And we´ve been invited to the pool. And a barbecue. Disco in the park. Movies, neighborhood-wide hide-and-seek… complete fun overload. I think I need another cup of tea.

Needless to say, the girls have settled in like they have been here for years.…

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September 29th

The Worst Critter Ever On My Boat

Posted by // September 29, 2014 // COMMENT (14 Comments)

Cruising, , ,

Reading Behan Gifford’s rats post made me glad I’ve never had a rat aboard, but I’ve had worse in my book.

I was cruising and surfing my way around the Society Islands and met a young Aussie, Luke, and his American girlfriend, Jenny. They’d been camping on the islands, sleeping in a tent. One thing led to another and I invited them aboard for a few days of surf exploration:
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Luke on the far right; Jenny in the middle

On their first night aboard we’d just turned in, with me up in the forepeak and them in the main salon, where the table drops down to make a double berth.…

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September 22nd

Get Packed and Get Going

Posted by // September 22, 2014 // COMMENT (3 Comments)

Cruising, ,

I am the proud possessor of a big yellow sticker in my passport that declares I am allowed to live in Papua New Guinea. Our flights are booked. Tomorrow is Moving Day. So why am I writing instead of prepping? Because, dear reader, I am avoiding packing. I know, I know – it should be an easy process. There are no choices to be made; if it is in this apartment and belongs to us, I have to pack it. And we only have four bags, after all. No, I mainly don’t want to pack because a) it means a morning of rejigging heavy bags such that all of them kiss but do not exceed the airline’s weight limit, and b) I have to do it on my own.…

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September 19th

Checking in at Puteri Harbour Marina

Posted by // September 19, 2014 // COMMENT (5 Comments)

Cruising, ,

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When engine issues took priority over adventuring, we needed a place at the southern end of the Malay peninsula to park Totem for a while. Puteri Harbour Marina, in Johor (just west of Singapore), made sense for a variety of reasons. It was a rigging job for Jamie that initially brought us there in June, and the friends that made coming back instead of looking elsewhere an easy decision.

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Isn’t it always the people that make the place? During the weeks we spent there, we met a host of cruisers who are now cemented into great memories. Half a dozen other boats with kids came through, including Momo.…

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September 16th

Approaching Norway

This is fantastic stuff. I know nothing about these people, except that the fellow’s name (see photo up top) seems to be Euan, and he and his partner don’t seem to be shy about neglecting the kids for a while so they can knock around the North Sea on their tiny little 19-foot Hunter Europa sloop. Though I’m pretty sure he’s only kidding about having left them in the shed with the heat turned off.

Whatever. The kids certainly don’t seem to mind. All in all this was a 2-week cruise, from the Shetland Islands to Norway and back, that took place this summer:

As impressive (and fun!) as this seems, it’s an exploit that pales in comparison to the sort of sailing that Roger Taylor routinely engages in.…

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September 16th

Podcast: David & Isabelle Hayes and Cruising with Kids

Posted by // September 16, 2014 // COMMENT (0 Comments)

Cruising, People, ,

David & Isabelle share their classic story of a ten-year dream-turned-reality to take their kids cruising. A French-Canadian couple from Quebec, David & Isabelle describe how after a bad ATV accident, David had an epiphany in his hospital bed, and their dream began. Ten years, two daughters, and three boats later, and their realizing it, halfway through an Atlantic circuit that took them to the Bahamas, down the Thorny Path to the BVI, across the Atlantic to Morocco and the Saraha desert, and now to Las Palmas where they’re staging for the return. Get inspired!…

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