|Nai Harn bay|
In the morning we woke up, checked out, then made our way by taxi to the south end of the island to Nai Harn beach where our friends, Mark and Julie, were waiting for us. Nai Harn beach is one of the quieter beaches due to its distance from the airport (farthest on the island) and lack of accommodation close by. It is a sheltered anchorage from north- and north-east wind and swells, and it also has a convenient public dock for dinghies so the bay is well-used by yachties. Kokomo, our home for the next few weeks, was happily anchored there, waiting for us to join it and start the adventure.
|Kokomo (in the marina)|
When we are on Kokomo with Mark and Julie, we are instantly relaxed because: a) Mark is an excellent mariner who has been 'round the world multiple times on multi-thousand ton cargo and container ships and therefore knows almost everything about navigation, boat maintenance, weather at sea, etc., and b) we're not solely responsible for the boat. Mark and Julie aren't as comfortable with "the white, flappy things," ... and that's where we get to lend some expertise. After settling in on the boat, we spent a few days provisioning, relearning systems on the boat and overcoming our jetlag and planning where we were going to go. The plan was to sail north along the coast to Ko Phra Thong and spend two weeks sailing, snorkeling and exploring the island and the waters around it.
Once everything was ready, we pulled up anchor and started north. The winds were brisk at 15-25 knots and coming from the northwest, which suited us just fine. It was looking like a lovely day for a sail. We ran into some trouble with the in-mast furler for the main sail, so decided to pull out the smaller "yankie" headsail to get some forward non-engine speed. The headsail popped out on the breeze and things started to feel very familiar.
|This isn't how your rigging is supposed to look|
Suddenly, we were bound for a different adventure.
In order to get the rigging fixed, we would need to inspect ALL the rigging and replace anything that looked suspect. It would be a costly exercise, but no where near as costly as if the rigging had completely failed and the mast had collapsed and/or broken off. We changed course south and motored around the island of Phuket to a marina that had riggers, sailmakers, engineers (for casting/welding/machining metal and plastics) and all the necessary expertise to get our rig back in working (and trustworthy) order.
|heading into Phuket Boat Lagoon|
While we were here, Mark and Julie decided to tackle a few other boat jobs. Here was our work list:
- inspect the forestay, back stays (2), shrouds (4), running back stays (2), all turnbuckles (7) and topping lifts and replace as necessary
- lay out, measure and reflake the two main sails, yankie, staysail and genoa
- inspect sails for damage and wear and repair as necessary
- whip all line and sheet ends as necessary
- remove the in-mast hydraulic motor, which requires disconnecting the hydraulic lines at the foot of the keel
- replace a forward bilge pump (which had been acting a bit flaky anyway)
- freshwater flush the cooling systems of the engine, generator and get-home engine/backup generator
- rebuild the carburetor on the outboard engine
- re-glue one of the oarlocks and one of the handles to the dinghy
- have new chaps made for the dinghy and put them on
|we get sails re-rolled after inspecting and reflaking them|
|Jai, our rigger, gets new steel shrouds|
connected to the spreaders
|Sean installing a leather wheel cover for Kokomo|
- a little thank-you gift for having us onboard.
Our worklist is long, but we start (and then finish) early so we are not working in the afternoon sun. The Boat Lagoon has a very nice fresh water swimming pool with coconut and palm trees all around, which makes for a great place to escape the heat once the boat jobs are finished.
|where you will find us most afternoons|
So, even though we aren't out sailing, it's gonna be hard to get sympathy from our friends for being here.