Unless you’ve been living under a rock you’ll no doubt have heard that we lost Millie overboard. In our latest vlog we cover off the story. We’ve changed things around a bit on the video front. The editing is faster and we’re trying to engage more with our viewers by answering questions and covering off topics that you might find interesting. If you have any questions about being a cruiser, or about anything else for that matter, please do send us a message and we’ll try our best to answer it in a future episode.
How/when/why did we end up living this alternative, slightly crazy life? It will be 10 years in December. Blimey!
Jamie didn’t like the darkening skies, so he took a look at the forecast to discover some big weather coming in from the west. Fishing vessels, large and small, arrived from deeper water, dropping noisy anchor chain and crowding into the anchorage behind Ko Tarutao’s high hills. He told the others to prepare themselves for some potential big winds.
When the first murmurings of this year’s SW monsoon came rumbling in, we cancelled our plans to meet friends in town and stayed aboard. Squadrons of clouds hurled lightning across the sky at each other for two days, while we sheltered in the cockpit and collected rainwater in buckets.
Next time you turn the tap on for a glass of water, to have a bath or make a coffee, enjoy the ease of that simple act. In our latest episode we explain why it can take us over two hours to do the same.
Checking in is easy in Ao Chalong, with harbour master, customs and immigration in three rooms next to each other. The whole process took 15 minutes, considerably faster than finding water.
Yesterday we were visited by a camera crew. Apparently, in our absence over the summer, they ran a story on Nazer, the man who looks after our cat, Millie, whilst we were back in the UK. Yesterday they returned for a follow-up story, so you should see us all in the news very soon – if you live in Kerala, that is! Below is the original story that ran some time this summer. I’m pleased to say those awful blue tarps are now off as we busy ourselves for our departure to the Maldives early next year.
My Mum and Dad have been on at me for not writing anything since we left Turkey, but I’ve been busy, and they write so much there’s nothing left for me to write about. They even stole my favourite topic, FISH, and wrote about all their fishing successes. What they failed to mention, of course, is how I actually lure the fish to Esper with my witchy, feline, telepathic senses, so all their successes are really mine. Anyway, here are my initial impressions of India. Damn snakes.
Yes, after four years, three near misses, two lines and one very impatient cat we have finally bagged our first catch off the back of Esper! Under the guidance of our fishing guru, Matt, both Liz and myself caught a fish each within the space of 24 hours. Of course we frequently pull up a cage full of tiddlers and live-bait with our lobster pot but, according to our guru, “that’s not fishing, that’s just being lazy”. Click on the link to read about this very exciting moment…
Introducing a new series on followtheboat: A Day In The Life. In this new category we take one day and break it down for you, hour by hour, offering a lighthearted view on what it’s like to spend 24 hours aboard Esper. In our first essay we examine an average day at anchor in Turkey, from dragging anchors and evil clerics to woodland creatures and smelly poo.
Oh, and if you’re using Internet Explorer 6, we’ve finally got round to fixing a display errors in the website – of course you should have upgraded or migrated to Firefox by now 😉
Is your burgee lower than your shabby courtesy flag, and are they both on the port side? Does your ensign fly freely all night and does your ‘Eng-er-land’ flag fly proudly? Oh my. What about your private signals, or shouldn’t I ask? Find out why the national flags of Libya and Nepal are unique with Millie’s vexillological treatise. She’s been doing a little research and come up with her own slant on flag etiquette. There’s a couple of new photos of her too, but you wouldn’t expect anything less.
A classic video clip of little Millie going for a dive in the warm waters of Boynuz Buku and proof that not only can cats swim but actually aren’t half bad at it either!
Gerald, a fellow yachtie who had previous knowledge & experience of matters mechanical, joined us and proved invaluable. A fan was set up to keep us cool and with plenty of cold drinks, twisting & turning, the gearbox eventually clicked into place. Hurrah- but will it work? Meantime-where is Millyu?
After debriefing we were taken to the Marina swimming pool-memories of swimming up and down looking at the blue skies and hearing the slatting of the rigging in the masts. Was it really only a few hours ago that we were in England? A poolside lunch fortified us for the afternoon.
… a small, straggly kitten appeared outside the Black Hole’s supermarket. The guys in the shop would should “Satilik, satilik!” (for sale) every time someone stopped to pet her. She was very difficult to ignore, not only because of the noise, but also because she was so pretty – and had green tattooed ears! One drunken early morning J and I persuaded her to walk back to the boat with us
If your marina is fortunate enough to have golf-carts and tricycles knocking about, why not help yourself to one for your return journey after a heavy night in the bar? In an early incident Liz and I ‘borrowed’ the shop’s tricycle, which has a large basket on the back for carrying provisions. After taking five minutes to get the thing going (Liz sitting in the basket was playing havoc with my balance) we eventually rode across the marina, down four steps onto the pontoon, along another 20 metres to the corner, and stacked the thing.
The next 24 hours became a blue of slamming, spray, 5 metre waves and queasiness. Most of the watches were done in saloon, though I preferred being outside, harnessed in and riding the boat as if on a surf board! It was either feel sick and feel sh!tty, or see it for what it was and make the most of it.
Expecting an open-armed warm welcome, three men appear on the deck looking a bit perplexed at our arrival, what with our kit and bags. Even an explanation of our presence seemed to confuse the guys on board.
With pontoons costing a lot of money we opted to moor up on a floating buoy, which took us about 20 minutes to sort out, fiddling with ropes and boat hooks and spot lights. Eventually we had to hold Jason over the side by each ankle for him to hook the rope through the rusty hook on the buoy! The reason for Jason’s keenness to volunteer for this task had been obvious