Rudder Hell: Running Aground

Running aground in the red sea

We finally leave Egypt, at least officially. Having done the paper work to exit Egypt we made our way southwards, only to run into some nasty southerlies. With a lack of protective anchorages from southerlies we opt for Luli, which is a good 13 hours away. Unfortunately this meant we made the anchorage at the end of the day. It caught us out and three boats hit coral, one with some serious consequences.

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Flaming Feluccas!

Felluca Luxor egypt

We spent three days in Luxor with Terry and Fiona of Roam II, taking in as many sights as possible before we left Hurghada. We’ll post up some pictures and related podcasts at a later date. To give you a little taster, however, we thought we’d post up this little podcast, recorded on our third day in Luxor aboard a traditional felucca. A felucca is a traditional sailing boat used on the Nile. We’re unsure exactly how old these modes of transport are but they are still used to get up and down Egypt’s great river. We get to chat to the skipper, a young Nubian, and also get Terry and Fiona’s take on life on the Nile.

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Liz Does Luxor

Tour Luxor Egypt

This is quite possibly our most action-packed log entry. Not only do we have an excellent podcast by Liz, but we have over 50 high-res photographs to accompany it too. The podcast was recorded on the first day of our three day trip to Luxor and takes in Karnak, Hatshepsut’s Temple and The Valley of the Kings, affectionately known as the ‘Valley of the Russian Whores’.

The podcast was recorded on our first day of our three day trip to Luxor and takes in Karnak, Hatshipsuit’s Temple and The Valley of the Kings. It is a fantastic walk-around commentary and is extremely well observed. What else would you expect from the daughter of a professor of archaeology? It’s quite amusing too, especially the observations of the Russian whores who were out in force that day. To help put things in perspective, take a look at these candid shots, all taken within half an hour at Hatshipsuit’s Sacred Temple.

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Like A Coffin

Sailing Egypt

This one’s for all you parents out there: Jordan and Leah are the youngest Vasco Da Gama rally participants and this impromptu recording caught them hanging out on their boat, Storm Dodger, on New Year’s Day. We get a little glimpse of what it’s like to be a teenager and young girl and, get this, Jordan even invites us into his cabin! A rare opportunity not to be missed! This is quite funny…

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Coptics And Carriages

Last weekend six Copts were killed in Egypt in a drive-by shooting. This interview with a Copt was edited at the time this was happening…Despite Egypt’s current status as a Muslim country it actually hosted the oldest form of organised Christianity. They are called Coptics and make up between 10-15% of the Egyptian population. Hopefully further down the line I will get to chat more intimately with a Muslim and what their faith means to them but whilst in Egypt I was desperate to chat to a Coptic.

Eventually I pulled it off. I met a young Coptic woman in Luxor who was willing to chat and be recorded, a feat unto itself since most Egyptians are quite guarded when it comes to opinions. Despite taking a few minutes to open up and insisting that we change her name to Maria, the name of her daughter, this is a great insight. Furthermore we conducted our little chat aboard a horse and carriage, taking in the scenes of the backstreets of Luxor! This podcast is accompanied by a video clip of the carriage ride and coincidentally coincides with the recent drive-by killings of six Coptics.

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Fly Me To The Moon

A happy new year to you! We celebrate the arrival of 2010 with a bunch of new podcasts, which we’ve titled ‘Through The Porthole’. (For those who had previous problems streaming their podcast we have improved the podcast media player.) They are a series of informal interviews with the Vasco Da Gama rally participants but to maintain interest amongst you non-sailors out there we’ve made a point of not talking about sailing; instead we find out a bit more about the people taking part. You’ll soon discover from this series that these people are many and varied, each with a story to tell. We start off with a fascinating man with an equally fascinating life story…

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A Festive, Possibly Sobering Message

This Christmas day the Vasco Da Gama rally participants and friends had a pontoon party in Hurghada Marina. Around 20 or so people took part in this ‘pot luck’ festive dinner. Liz and I were due to take part in the celebrations, and we did, but not without a hiccup (read a morning spent in the hospital A&E)!

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You Have Church Bells, We Have Mullahs

Yesterday was Friday, holy day here in Egypt, and there is no mistaking it! All day the town reverberated with the sound of the mullah calling the men to prayer, a sound that is amplified through the many speakers adorning the minarets. Jamie jumped on his bike and recorded a little tour of these sounds, which are quite extraordinary to the western ear.

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Crossing Shipping Lanes in a Force 7

This is the second of two 20 minute podcasts recorded as we transited out from the canal and into the Gulf of Suez. If you’ve ever wondered what a Beaufort Force Seven (gusting eight) is like, we can now tell you. We have the underpants to prove it. That cargo ship approaching the side of our boat didn’t help but we made it across from the Sinai back to the west coast of the Red Sea and eventually into Hurghada.

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Negotiating Reefs & Oil Fields

followtheboat s/y Esper red sea

This is the first of two 20 minute podcasts recorded as we transited out from the canal and into the Gulf of Suez. We finally leave the evil clutches of the Suez Authority and into open waters where we anchor for the first time in Egypt, have the best sail of our lives…ever… and catch a little fishy.

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The Suez Canal Part 2

Suez Canal followtheboat

The is the second podcast recorded whilst transiting the Suez Canal aboard Esper. In this episode we leave Ismalia with a new, quieter pilot and make our way towards Port Suez. We encounter some fishermen in the Bitter Lakes, which enrages our normally subdued pilot, and Ian of ‘Rhumb Do’ suggests lamb chops for dinner. It’s not what it seems…

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The Suez Canal Part 1

followtheboat s/y esper suez canal egypt

This is the first of two podcasts recorded as we transited the Suez Canal from north to south. We set off from Port Said around midday, took in the afternoon sun and watched as a huge convoy passed, and spent a bit of time chatting to our pilot. Learn a bit about Egyptian families, the types of ships that pass and what goes on on the canal.

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Turkey To Egypt: Part 2

Turkey to Egypt followtheboat sailing adventure podcast

This is the second 20 minute instalment of our 400nm crossing from Turkey to Egypt. In this episode Liz catches our first official trolled fish, Jamie proves he can’t navigate by the stars, we ride 3m waves and eventually land in Port Said.

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Turkey To Egypt Part 1

Turkey to Egypt sailing

We promised you a podcast of our crossing and so here it is: this is the first of two 20 minute podcasts, documenting our 400nm crossing from Turkey to Port Said, Egypt. In this episode we break things and talk about various aspects of navigation and night sailing. This is the perfect podcast for introducing you landlubbers to the wonders of sailing, especially if you have never stepped on board a boat before. Download it to your iPod or notebook, or play it direct via the ‘play’ button. Enjoy!

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A Circumnavigating Family

Holtz family Tiger

This, our first official followtheboat podcast, is an interview with a young south African family half way through a sailing circumnavigation. They’ve visited a staggering 30 counties in 3 years but their trip has been put on hold as they attend to a dismasting hiccup! As if that’s not enough, Ronnelle has returned to their home in America for three months, leaving dad Neil to look after Emille, 7, and Pete, 5. There’ll be hell to pay if that mast isn’t up when she returns in the new year!

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