Two Beach Birthdays

Our autumn series of followtheboat posts take us to the Himalayas. It’s an exhausting trek into the moody, cloud-covered mountains, but before we head north we’re going to take two weekend breaks on the beach in Kerala. Stupidly we booked our driver through the same company who arranged our fateful Western Ghats adventure. And guess who our driver was? Yep, the very same chap who claimed never to have had an accident in 21 years of driving, forgetting the accident Liz and I were involved in within 20 minutes of jumping into his car on our first trip (I think the definition of an accident in India has to include at least one fatality)

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Pirate Alley: Towing The Line

The next part of our Pirate Alley excursion is quite unbelievable as we encounter three major problems within the same night! We’ve split the podcasts up and in the next couple of episodes we have a collision, more fishing net problems and you’ll also hear how one boat starts taking in water. Today’s episode, however, deals with the minor issue of a boat breaking down in the middle of nowhere!

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Pirate Alley: Birthday Close Encounters

It’s Jamie’s 40th birthday. No partying for him though as we move into our second day in Pirate Alley where two boats have to tend to dysfunctional alternators. One of the boats is Esper.

To make matters worse the inevitable happens: two fishing dows are spotted on the horizon, suspiciously following the rally. Could they be pirates? And if so, what chance do we have of reinforcing our safety in numbers strategy if Esper’s group is all over the place?

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Pirate Alley: Night Diving

The hilarious departure from Port Aden raises our spirits as we begin our journey into Pirate Alley. Within two hours disaster strikes as one of the boats runs into a fishing net. In the dark.

This collective of boats isn’t called a rally for nothing. Listen to the boats rallying together to get us through the first of many hurdles lying ahead

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Dancing Our Way Out Of Yemen

The day before we left Aden we were invited to another leaving do put on by Colonel Mohammed the Coast guard-cum-port police-cum-general bigwig. We also got to chat to a Yemeni woman, covered head to foot in black with just her eyes visible. Her English is excellent and makes for a great little interview.

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Best Day of Your Life?

Can you think of the best day of your life? You’ve probably got a few, or perhaps you hadn’t given it much thought. It’s rare that a day happens and then lie in bed on the same evening concluding that it must be one of the best days of your life, but that’s what happened today. Today goes down as one of the most idyllic, perfect days I have ever experienced.

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Scuba Diving And Snorkeling In The Red Sea

One of the greatest things about being in the Red Sea is, of course, the snorkeling and diving. Imagine, then, having the freedom to sail to a suitable location, drop the hook, hop in the dinghy, pick a dive spot and drop over the side with your gear on, ready for a dive! Of course this helps if you have Graham of ‘Eeyore’ with you. He’s a qualified dive master and a passion for diving that is matched only by his passion for sailing and making the best mango chutney this side of Africa. We were also joined by Mick, who was out visiting Pat and Tony on ‘Full Flight’. Mick kindly donated some underwater pictures for you…

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Snorkeling With Me Dad

the fact that there were some wonderful memories taking Dad snorkeling in the Red Sea is a bonus! This was a simple downwind sail of around 12 miles due south of Hurghada, a case of dropping the hook and spending a very memorable few days at anchor.

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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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