25th December 2014.
Made Koh Lipe in just on four hours and found our old mooring from the last visit. It is secured to a huge piece of rock on the seabed. We sat back and had a few drinks and relaxed, it was good to be on holidays again with only one commitment, be at Bang Thao Bay in Phuket by Xmas to meet the Sandy’s and the Bonnies, not to hard you wouldn’t think.
Slipped into Lipe for some new phone sim cards, a feed at Fino’s, dropped in at the Elephant Bar to see the Banana Band boys and to say gidday to Pete at the Peace and Love Bar. I ate so much food I could not get a beer into me so we went home early.
This is where the fun starts, we were just tooting along in the dinghy back to Boomerang, dropped by another cat to say hello, a couple from Singapore, then we turned for home but where was it. We motored around a ferry but still no Boomerang, then we motored out a bit and there was a nice big Perry 57 that wasn’t there before, for a brief second I thought it was an early Xmas present, but it wasn’t, it was Ivory Street from Penang, by now the blood pressure is rising, not something I relish, I am thinking someone’s pinched it, then I am thinking that the new shackle I put on had come undone, then I am thinking oh well it is insured and then I am thinking I don’t care if its insured, I want her back. All this shit going on in my head, HORROR. At this time we noticed a couple of people waving vigorously at us so we shot over to their boat, it was Steve and Teena from Telaga, my hopes were rising and when they explained that they had watched Boomerang drift past them, missing all other boats and head out to sea on her Pat Malone I thought what, how long ago, about an hour, panic is setting in now big time as it is blowing it arse off, but Steve says don’t get to worried as its just out there somewhere you can see the anchor light, see out there, I looked and of course I could see the yella anchor light out in the distance. We took off in the dinghy and bashed our way out to her, and when we got there she was perfectly ok, amazing. We piled on and I started the engines just to be sure, she was weighed down at the nose so we went up to see what was going on, would you believe the whole fucking mooring is hanging off the bridle, it is true, unbelievable. So now it is strip off and get my flippers and goggles on and the Leatherman knife Muz and Kazza gave me then swim under the boat and start cutting the mooring away. Jen shone the torch from above and you could see the lump of rock about fifteen metres below, clear as. Cutting the rope was a bit of a mission as where I had to cut was about a metre below the surface and I had to keep finding where I was cutting every time I went back down with a new breath. The last strand about 8mm in diameter broke by it self and then the mooring went down and Boomerang went up with me hanging onto the bridle, Horror. We then motored back to shore and anchored up, in 25 bloody metres so had all the chain we had in, it grabbed good. I had marked our spot where we found her and it was just on 1nm out to sea. How lucky was that.
Once back and settled I headed over to thank Steve and Teena, they reckoned it was so frustrating watching Boomerang drift by but once it was safely out of the mooring area it seemed to not be in too much peril. Then I had to mop up the carnage as they had rung Keith and Cath in Langkawi to get our number, KandC had called a resort on the beach they knew and had people looking for us on the beach, one bloke had Keith on his phone asking if Rod and Jen were here at the Peace and Love Bar and along the beach, before we got there, but no one let us know about it once we arrived, another lost in translation, Horror. It was an amazing effort by everyone and thank you all.
Goes to show it pays if sometimes you guts yourself to exploding on Larb Moo, Larb squid, Sweet and Sour pork, sticky rice and a couple of coconuts. If I could have fit a few beers in who knows what would have happened.
Next day we moved to Koh Adang as we didn’t clear in on Koh Lipe because we would then have to clear out from there when we left for a visa run. We would just wait for a weather opportunity and head to Ao Chalong to do the paperwork.
Found our old mooring, dived on it and did some repairs before deciding it was safe, the hauser from the float had the outer strands damaged so made myself up a sling so it was doubled up and safe as houses. At this point the weather turned to shit.
We visited the neighbours, Steve and Teena, they visited us with an excellent bloke from Germany, Thomas, who was waiting for his wife and daughter to arrive at Koh Lipe. Bit of a blinder.
Our ETD was not looking real flash, to the north we had 20kns NE with 1 to 2metre swell at 4 seconds or windy and choppy as on the nose, bit like a washing machine, so we waited.
My main task each day was to take the dinghy down to the SW tip of Adang and hit the internet for weather, good old favourites, Buoyweather and Passageweather, both showing pretty much the same with Buoyweather indicating a bit stronger winds, in Indonesia if Buoyweather said 15kns it was going to blow 25kns so we waited.
Then the internet ran out so a mercy dash back across the channel to Koh Lipe, which was out of control bouncing around and hanging on, a brisk walk into town found my mate the phone top up guru at the 7/11 and filled up. Also bought another sim card, AIS this time as the dtac was sometimes a bit sketchy. I am not sure about other people but we end up with so many different sim cards it is not funny, so a cull was needed and in the end we had my old iPad and Jens Samsung phone all with credit coming out of their slots.
By the time I got back to the dinghy it was time to have a well earned beer, only one as I only had 100bart left, dickhead, but then departed with a brief catch up with Persian Sands, another Perry 43 from Broome, whilst talking to Pete The InvestigatorII sailed past, Hubert and Jasmine, who both Pete and I know well.
The ride back across the channel was heaps better, riding down the waves instead of up them this time, I caught up with Hubert and guided him in to a anchoring spot behind us. Good to see these guys again, although the Bloody Mary’s were guaranteed to be strong.
Had a good night on Investigator, Hubert as usual the perfect host, I spilt some tomato juice on the new teak so I was banished to be served upon only, don’t you dare try to pour anything was the call. Then I kicked my beer over, horror.
Next morning was Xmas, opened our pressies from home, got books, money, shortbread and something else but can’t remember at the present moment what it was, it was great being able to have a surprise though. Wine glasses was the other things. Cheers Family.
We went down to our local internet café and rang and emailed everyone from the dinghy, it was great to talk with everyone even over the outboard noise as we had to shift due to oyster encrusted rocks every few minutes, they were all sorted with breakfast and lunch organized, checked the weather, tomorrow it is, yeeha.
Had a nice dive with Hubert and the new speargun which is 3 from 4 in the killing stakes, I can even load it quite easily, the other one was so hard to do. Got two parroties and another don’t know its name.
When we were here just over a month ago there were fish everywhere, we had been watching the locals diving daily and now it is slim pickings, wankers have cleaned it out. Pointed out a stone fish, a small crayfish and a couple of pencil fish to Hubert along the way. We did the top of the tide thing and with no real effort we had probably covered a mile up and back.
Filleted it all up and we now had our Xmas BBQ food for later. Our Xmas brunch was Sailors beef sausages on sticks, dipped into a blend of Indian mango pickle, some mustard from the Andaman and a bit of tomato sauce. Jen even put tomatoes on sticks, she’s an ideas girl.
We all met on the beach for a BBQ late in the arvo, time enough for Frisbee, which I am still pretty crap at but getting a bit better, Steve was an old pro, then followed by crab races. We met Thomas’s wife and daughter, can’t possibly try to spell their names, Soph, the newly named daughter, helped Jen collect a bag full of hermit crabs and they set up a track and it was all go. Teena seemed to have bet heavily as her excitement levels rose to fever pitch, but it was a track for Soph and the smaller crabs on the day. After an action packed card the crabs were let go and more wine and beer were drunk.
Soph was tending the fire like a seasoned pro and Steve made a bed of coals for the potatoes in alfoil.
In the end Thomas and his mob went back to their boat, so did Steve and Teena for a roast chicken, eating late again, and we had the fillets with garlic, salt and pepper and a drizzle of coconut oil wrapped in foil.
Have lost our BBQ plate thing, last seen Telaga on back step of boat. Bugger.
Jen had some of her Yoghurt and garlic jizz which went superb with the spuds and the fish was really nice and soft, Jasmine reckons it was perfect, she even had 2 serves, she is a very easily pleased girl. She explained that where they are from in Austria, all the fish tasted really fishy so they didn’t eat it, I know the taste she means.
We hung around for a few wines and beers sitting around our camp fire listening to geckos in the jungle surrounding us, Hubert was knowledgeable on these little critters and when you listen you can here them puffing themselves up and then letting rip with four or maybe five GE-KO noises they are famous for.
As the fire got lower so did our lighting level and the time to pack up had come, all in all a pretty good Xmas was 2014.
Merry Xmas from SV Boomerang and her Captain and Crew.