Today I had an encounter I will never forget. Meet Chella Duri, a goatherder from Tamil Nadu, working in the neighbouring state of Kerala. He earns as much in a month as we spend on an evening out, but I’m not asking for your pity, just a few moments to listen to what he had to say when he heard that I was a rich westerner living on a boat in Cochin…
Munnar is a corner of Kerala that’s tucked away in the mountain peaks of tea plantations and lush green valleys. Miles and miles of strange looking tea trees, interspersed with cardamom bushes and coffee trees, provide great walks and views not seen anywhere else in this mainly tropical state. In this post Liz provides some insight into these wonderful valleys, and throws in a visit to a tea factory.
Today all four crew of sailing yacht ‘Quest’ were killed. Apparently the US Navy ‘responded to gunfire’ aboard Quest off the coast of Oman, which it had been shadowing since the boat was taken on Friday. Our thoughts go out to Scott and Jean’s family and friends. They were here just a few weeks ago in Cochin Marina, India.
There is already much debate on the sailing forums as to what actually happened and what will happen next. Only time will tell. One wonders if we will ever get to the bottom of what really occured aboard that ill-fated yacht. In the meantime I have removed my previous scrutiny of passage planning into the Indian Ocean out of respect.
The fact remains that this is a sad day for liveaboard sailors around the world, a sad day for our freedom and a sad day for the worsening situation both on the waters of the Indian Ocean and in Somalia.