G & T, the only place to be.

27th March 2015.

 Hanging out in Naiharn was getting a bit to easy, wake up have a swim, read a book, check the surf, have a few Leo’s and a white wine, check the hang gliders doing their stuff, it is a classic as if it is not dangerous enough just jumping off a cliff these guys fly around a great big mother of a wind generator. Then watch an episode or three of Six Feet Under, go to bed and then start all over, so a change was required.


Hubert was around the corner on Investigator, twenty miles away, so we got our act together, said seeya to the guys at Pier 93, Paul on Escondido and headed south then north in balmy conditions but with the current in our favour, the batteries got a good charge, we made a fair bit of water and then we were there.


The water up here is not clear, it has that milky look to it but it is clean enough, I even had a go at getting rid of the green slime stuff growing on our waterline, you have to dodge the jellys, mainly man-o-wars and not much bother, big tough Hubert’s not real keen on them though. The antifoul has worked a treat with only patches where we have hit something in the water showing signs of growth, Hempel Antifoul is the go up here.


Spent a couple of days out the front of a resort, didn’t go in but had a pretty good feed around the corner at a beach full of bars and a sizable restaurant. Larb Moo was Lab squid, another one of those lost in translation moments.

Hubert and I got stuck into the installation of his AIS unit and after a day of sweating we turned it on and it worked, pretty well grinning and a well earned beer o’clock back on Boomerang that day.


We took the dinghy into G&T Boatyard to get a lay of the land from the water as the haul out is happening tomorrow around 1000, all looks pretty straight forward, tides 3.3 metres so should piss it in.


We had a look around the Ao Po Grand Marina, some pretty fancy boats parked up here, the nicest is a three masted yacht called Eos, it is a pearler, gleaming all over. Flying Fox and its tender, 6711 above, a Sea Axe, which has a helicopter, a couple of thirty plus foot tenders on board is to service the Fox which looked very similar to Big Fish which we were parked up next to in Keppel Bay Marina in Singapore.


Had a few JD’s with Hubert, probably one to many, so woke up in a bit of a daze, quick jump overboard and that’s fixed, upped anchor and headed in with Hubert following us in Watson, lined up the posts and by the time we got there, Gerry had Nook, Nok, Nick, Bung and Pet ready for the lines and we just pulled her up till she was resting on the beach and let the tide do the rest. After lunch they lifted Boomerang up, dragged it with a tractor and winch up the ramp, washed her down and parked her up for us.


Hubert has lent us his A/C so it is precariously perched on a lump of foam and some plastic has been taped around it. We removed the window frame for powder coating so it had to be taped up anyway. During the day I don’t think the compressor stops but at night it gets cold as. I have made a new door as Toi wants to get started on the old one.


Toi has got the boys wet and drying the decks so the boat is a bit of a nogo zone until they knock off so we went and picked up the solar panels from Andaman Electrical, they have been easy to deal with and the bits were there when they said they would be, also had to get stuff to install them with at Bangkok Hardware, the hardware shop of Phuket, and a few other bits and pieces from AME. Geez walked into AME and someone had dropped their guts, couldn’t hack it, had to open the door up, whoever did it should be proud. Jen reminded me it was our wedding anniversary, twenty eighth we think, close enough anyway, so we had a feast at the local seafood restaurant, Bang Pae, which is renowned on Phuket, Todman goong, crispy shrimp salad and a thai style fried fish, a few beers and it was back to the boat for a nannery.


The sanding is progressing well and the cockpit is now polished, soft as a baby’s bum, can’t wait for the whole job to be done. Toi has pointed out other things I need to get done now as they are just about to go to shit, all the glue under the handrails is in her words, dead and needs to be replaced. Toi is unreal, she knows a lot about a lot and how to do it. She has no problem with helping you out and to me seems like a person with good karma hanging around her.


The polishing is now underway, it’s like brand new, what a bargain, Bung who has Friday’s off is here on Sunday going for it, he had a hand from Nook this morning and they have finished the cockpit and moved on to the topsides, gleaming.


The solar panels are installed but need some extra wire to finish them, C&C Engineering, Yanmah people, are perhaps coming Tuesday to service the sail drives, then the props can go back on, another tick, although each tick usually coincides with a new job to the list, it’s never ending.


Had a bit of fun last night with Gerry and a couple of his mates, Paul and Nick, at Bang Pae, tried some of the local rum, Sam Song, bit like metho by itself, the food was superb and tried a new dish, homook, which is a pastey sort of thing with fish and herbs wrapped in a banana leaf, the flavours blow your mind, lemon grass, kaffir lime, fish, turmeric come to you instantly and it has the consistency of mum’s South African fillet dish, which is and will always be my favourite meal. Pretty messy by the time we got home and getting into the A/C was a bargain.


Went shopping the other day down near Boat Lagoon, had a feed at our favourite restaurant down that way, the Lunc Som Kitchen, had pad thai to share, fried kale and cripy pork each and a soda water each for 180thb or about eight bucks, then went looking for and found a place called Super Cheap, it is, but it is a bit hard to find stuff as it is all over the show, found the oil, boat cleaners, bottle shop and then a huge pharmacy so I wandered in to check on the pill situation, they had everything I need on the shelf which is not the norm so made life easy, then leaving I came across a pile of people all standing around a table with a bloke dressed in white taking blood tests, not to sure what for but it caught my attention, next thing I am sitting at a chair waiting my turn. Ends up being a Cholesterol test, so why not. Heaps more people started milling around now there is a pharang having a go, this could be entertaining. Waiting my turn my attention was drawn to my fingers, they are like dodgy as, covered in black Sika, paint, contact cement and my finger nails are filthy, horror. I also got a chance to look over the previous results as they are listed on a pad in front of me, the three young teenage girls in front of me had readings between 120 and 130 and a quick glance showed me that the highest result was 170, next I have to put my hand on the desk, palm up, the crowd which has now swelled all went, uurrgh as they saw the state of my fingers, he wiped my finger with alcohol, pricked my finger and then put the sample into his machine for three minutes and up pops the result, me and about thirty people leaned over to see the result, 82, which was the lowest by miles, the crowd ooh’d and ahh’d and the bloke asks me what I eat, “coconuts, kaylan and kale but most of all Larb Moo, lots of larb moo”, the crowd went into a frenzy, larb moo good for you. Got up copnkrapt the tester and the crowd, perhaps I don’t need some of those pills after all. Jen went to have a go but after the crowd witnessed the dirty fingered phalang have a go they all wanted a shot, it was chocker by then so she bailed.


Boomerang is shiny as, Toi is even surprised how well it has come up, Bryan Perry makes good boats. The props are all in pieces and buffed and ready to be coated with prop gold, the doors are looking superb, Toi has taken that job on and she is showing her master craftsmanship, they look superb.


I was sitting down there watching her go at it when she got a phone call, it was The Kokomo’s and they are up on the reef just out from us, we looked out and there they were, this set us off, Gerry and I dragged the dinghy from up in the trees, its half flat, fuel pisses out of the fitting when you squeeze the bulb thing but it starts and we are off on an adventure. We rounded up Hubert and headed over to a listing Kokomo, not looking to flash, the tide is falling so not much chance of dragging her free but we tried with the anchor chain and she moved a bees dick but that was all and the decision was made to protect rather than waste the light trying to drag her off this tide. We headed back in and got the foam blocks they use for hauling out and took them all out and used the chain to hold them into position, which worked pretty well.

2000, its dark and we are up to our tits stumbling over boondys in thongs, which Hubert found were capable of gashing you with bad foot placement, at least the water was a nice temperature. We got one of Gerry’s big sheets, ropes, under the boat and up to the starboard side and cleated off then used it to keep the tension on the chain and hopefully keep the blocks in place as the boat listed further.

2200, the boat is at about forty five degrees, still about a foot between hull and bottom on the port side, the tide has about 300mm to go and we can’t do bugger all so we took Karen ashore, Gerry stayed with Frank and Hubert and I went back to the Investigator. I got on to Toi and asked her about getting a local ferry to try and pull it off at high tide, she rang back about ten minutes later, “what time you want us there”, “0230 to 0300”, “OK see you there”, she is a pearler. Hubert and I had a few beers and some medicine schnapps for a fair few aches which are racking me, slept in a hammock and had a hooting dream, must have been the medicine. Woke up at 0230 to the smell of bacon, had a filthy feed, a coffee and off we go with a big D shackle.

0245, the boat is upright, still a bit of a list but looking much better, the boat Toi has organised is like a barge with a roof, the engine noise as we pulled up was great to hear, real throaty at idle, we have got a chance I reckon. They have been practicing their approach and towing angle, great to see they are onto it. We handed the shackle over to Gerry and changed the ropes to the winches in the saloon from around the missen mast. The guys on the boat had a huge rope which we ran through the shackle and back, Nok had to tie a bowline in the middle of the rope, I want to learn how he did that and he only just made it as the rope pulled tight, the big diesel roared and Kokomo twisted on its keel but no backwards movement, yelled to Frank give it shit and she started moving but this is when I should have said nothing as when I yelled “go, go go” the barge stopped, Gerry said to me don’t say anything unless you want them to stop, point taken, we had to realign the barge and rerun the rope back and forth, then give it another shot, this time nothing, my heart was sinking, should have shut my gob, then a ting noise as some of the stainless handrail got crushed and then all of a sudden she was off going backwards at a fair rate of knots, then the anchor pulled tight, then it was a tug a war between the barge and the anchor, we got over to the barge and yelled to Toi to stop which they did, it then took a fair bit of time to get the anchor up, it was well and truly set, then it was up and away we go, thank christ for that, but Frank decided to follow the barge, here we go again, we chased him down and turned him around and headed out to the channel with explicit instructions, ”——- follow us”, which were sort of listened to but finally we got them out to the channel and anchored in ten metres. Geez, it’s a struggle.

0500, we all made our way back to our homes and a new day of jobs. I reckon The Kokomo’s were very bloody lucky tide wise, although it was probably the main cause of their problems in the beginning, the low during the night was not that low, if it had have been a couple of days earlier they would have been lying on their side on the rocks, then the high tide was only 100mm less than the high when they ran aground, the bit of chop also helped lift the boat up and allow it to be dragged back, anyway it was pretty exciting and a bit of an adventure to get you out of the mundane life we have to follow. What a wanker hey.


Boomerang is fully polished, the anti foul extension is primed and the first coat is going on as I tap away, the solar panels are pumping out seventeen amps, Toi is progressing well with the doors, painting, sanding, painting and sanding, I reckon they are going to come out filthy.


I just screamed, Stark has the Kiwi’s 1 for 1, Toi, who is sanding the door frame, just about had a heart attack, poor bugger, Shit I did it again, 2 for 20 , and again 3 for 33, and again but not out, spew, come on Australia, the commentator sounds a bit gay, oh it’s KP.

Kiwis are now all out for stuff all, loving this, wish there were some Kiwis around, that’s a bit of a dumb thing to say, what am I thinking.

Australia have won, I have even warmed to KP, no wonder the poms don’t like him, he’s a really good bloke, what a ripper day.