This quarterly update will not stand out for the amount of miles traveled, even less sailed. Neither for newly discovered places. In fact it wasn't till we left Ao Chalong for Nai Harn (Phuket) the day before Christmas Eve that we saw some new shorelines and ALISHANs anchor was lowered in an unknown sandy bottom. The story will tell more on how we spent our days in Langkawi, our favorite place in
Hole in the Wall and Kuah.
The 3rd quarter ended in Hole in the Wall, a very special place in the NE of Langkawi, where the
A perfect place to leave the boat behind for some land travel or to fly back home. We wrote about our early morning dinghy trips, exploring the numerous canals, watching pink dolphins cruising up and down the river, long-tailed macaques balancing on the one telephone wire leading to a fish farm /eatery and big birds of prey feeding on whatever floats their way, mostly bits of chicken supplied by tourist guides. There is a lot of noisy traffic coming and going during the day, eco-tourism is the thing at present. But after 4:00 pm the tourists all return to their hotels for pre dinner drinks and we yachties had the place to ourselves. Except for a few late kayakers every now and then.
An Olive-backed Sunbird and one of the many butterflies whose names I still don’t know.
OK, this is old news, but I loved that place and hope to spend some more time their on our way south. After a short week we sailed on to Kuah, the main town of
The park in Kuah was closed for renovation. No problem, the birds and flowers were at their best before the workers arrived – and kicked me (Marijke) out.
A Black-naped Oriole and a pair of Chestnut-headed Bee-eaters
2 Days of socializing was enough, we continued to Rebak. Not that we really had to hurry, but we’d promised to look after Ouma-s cat Moustache, which was actually cancelled at the last moment. And we had repairs to do: our broken lifeline needed to be replaced (see Q3) and ordering through Noel, who runs the marine shop in Rebak Marina seemed a good idea. Specially when the wrong material was delivered and we could let him take care of that. This took more than a few days of course, so our planned one week became nearly one month. And thus we rolled back in our old routine, this time with Jaap fully capable (see photo).
We started the days early to take Nori and Wakame out and to watch the wildlife. There was always some kind of excitement. For Marijke when the Asian Paradise Flycatchers arrived, for the cats when a group of otters entered the yacht basin and for Jaap when his “patient” Mark came out on the jetty for a walk. Jaap was supporting this man after he’d had a double knee replacement, urging him to get out of the wheelchair and walk in the resort’s swimming pool.
We made new friends and met old friends and again people from way, way back. We got together for a half hour of Pilates exercises and some gossip in the mornings. Worked on the never ending list of things to do after that and socialized a bit more in the evenings. Or walked around the island.
Japanese yacht Eternity in Rebak with something in the prop: Jaap had to be there.
The sewing machine got dragged out and a new dinghy cover was made. The interior also saw some changes, with batik sarongs draped on the settees. (Easy to wash after sweaty encounters). We used our time well and of course it flew by. Suddenly Noel showed up with the right lifeline stuff. It took just one day to fix it and we were done. Now we were eager to move on, there were some hot items on the calendar: a trip to
Scenes at Rebak
Now, who was stalking who?
A family of hairy-nosed otters, ever so entertaining, lived on the island and sometimes came into the yacht basin to the delight of people as well as Nori and Wakame.
On October 20th we bade Rebak farewell. Moved 5 miles NW and dropped the hook at
Telaga is located right under a range of mountains and teems with wildlife. We had met Mandy, a nature guide at Rebaks resort, who introduced us to her boss, a lady from
A Butterfly Lizard and a Tree Lizard.
Residents of the 7 wells at Telaga: Lanternflies and lots of spiders.
This harmless Bronzeback was sitting in front of the Sheraton Beach Resort, scaring guests.
Langkawi has 2 native monkeys: the Dusky Leaf Monkey or Spectacled Langur and the ever present Long-tailed Macaque.
Telaga is a wonderful place. Safe anchorage, pretty scenery, lots of wildlife and a good bakery. We had been here before our trip to
A moth on a fan palm with windows in it’s wings! And some flowers we saw on the way.
Yasuo, the Japanese single handler we’d met in Rebak came along too, so we could practice our dwindling Japanese a bit and divert attention from the depths under the swinging gondola of this Malaysian rig. Later we heard that we needn’t have worried so much. An Austrian built it and it does get maintained, unlike the steep cable train to Penang Hill, that was closed immediately upon inspection a few weeks after our ascent. The three of us walked to the station at the
View from the top of Gunung Mat Chinchang. Somewhere there is ALISHAN.
Flying Lemurs are nocturnal and we first saw them during our evening walk with Dev of Dev’s Adventures. (see the baby?)
Some of the many fungi in the rainforest.
The Pit Viper is very poisonous, but not aggressive. He stayed with us while we had lunch on the mountain during one of our hikes. The Tokee gecko lives in the Berjaya Resort and is just noisy.
The time had come to sail south to the island
What should have been a busy night of tense watches, dodging fish traps and fishing boats that were extremely difficult to spot and identify by their navigation lights (if they had any) turned out a complete piece of cake with no obstacles and no shipping between an hour after departure and an hour before arrival. It would even have been a very pleasant sail, had there been any wind and had Marijke been less hungry. 10 Minutes out she took an enormous bite of a cheese and avocado sandwich and dislocated her jaw. She had to go through the night with painfully cramped muscles and could not close her mouth for several hours.
You want to hear a secret?
All crew sy Jan Haring ( Auckland-Fukuoka Yachtrace 1989)
All crew sy Jan Haring
( Auckland-Fukuoka Yachtrace 1989)
On the 12th we borrowed a car and drove to the airport to collect Jaaps eldest sister Marleen from
We did the sights of
The one across the street, called the Sleeping Buddha.
And some more scenes at various temples.
One night, wanting something different, we went to a fish spa. Here we sat with our feet in tanks, filled with schools of darkish colored fish that nibbled on our heels and soles, working their way up our ankles and between our toes. It was tickly in a pleasant kind of way and when our time was up our feet felt clean, the skin soft and the nerve-ends tickly for hours!
We spent a lot of time eating, consuming all sorts of Asian exotic dishes, roti, noodles, steamboat and Marijkes favorite: soft shell crabs. We feasted on mango and papaya every morning and slept soundly, thanks to the air co, bought 9 months before in this town.
Always something to watch amongst the junks.
When the girls left we packed up and anchored half a mile south between the junks in 6m of mud, with a strong current and little wind. There we had to deal with other yachts that got kicked out of the marina and big floats from
ALISHAN in Tanjong City Marina as seen from the ferry to Butterworth.
The application of a visa for the Andaman Islands of India takes 10 working days. That’s not counting the weekends and the public holidays of
Jaap with one of the creatures in the category unbelievable head dresses at
Back to Langkawi.
Why we didn’t go on south? See Melaka, Port Dixon etc? Our time in
This time we (motor)sailed during the day and stayed a couple of days in some anchorages in the south of the Langkawi group. From there we went to Kuah, where grocery shopping is easy on the bicycle (easier than
Our faithful boat sitters, always snug in their favorite posies: the tray on the saloon table and the top of the pantry - ex bar, always asleep, but ready to greet us on deck when we return home. Always happy with a cuddle and some biscuits, they were showing the signs of the end of a very hot season. They became active!
Well, in Rebak they ran up and down the pontoon, under the boardwalk, in the trees, back to the pontoon, over, unknown decks and kept on making the same mistake: Alishan was on the same dock, but not in the same berth as before. I’m glad the yacht
And so we parted with our dear portable AC and Marijkes bicycle. We won’t need them in
What do you think of this monster? Scary?
On December 17 Alishan headed for Phuket for the 2nd time, but this time in the NE Monsoon. That meant stopovers at the same islands, but different anchorages and new places to discover. At Tarutao we now stopped on the west coast, in front of a long white beach with no people. We set course to Ko Phetra, a place I once saw on TV and always had wanted to visit. This is only possible on calm days and this time we were lucky! Our friends on Ouma III, who had entered
The islands had several small latex “home”factories. A walk around was like an instant demonstration on how rubber was tapped from the tree, processed and made into sheets, that were hung to dry.
We stayed here one day and were rewarded with strong winds on the next leg. We passed Ko Lanta with 40 knots on the beam and raced to Phi Phi. With Christmas on our heels we made haste and cleared in at Ao Chalong on the 22nd of Dec.
Elephant temple at Phrom Thep, the south
Here we also felt like coming home in a way. Not that we like the place so much, but we have been there twice and know our way around. Quickly we stocked up with fruit and veges, downloaded our mail and left for our X-mas hang-out: Nai Harn.
Our opinion about Phuket is changing a little. Before I (Marijke) thought it was one of the worst cruising locations, but the NE monsoon opened up some nice bays, beaches and swimmable water. We had to share it with close to 100 other yachts on Christmas day.
One of the surprises we had here was running into a boat called Blue Fin with Lucas with his wife Mary Ellen, an acquaintance from
On the 30th we moved 3 bays to the north, to
SOUND OF MUSIC near Patong
SOUND OF MUSIC near Patong
Sy SOUND OF MUSIC with Michael and Em joined us and made us eat lentils at midnight, a tradition amongst rich people in north
A Scarlet-backed Flowerpecker and its baby.
A Striped throated Bulbul and its White-vented relative singing their heart out.
Olive-backed Sunbirds, always around the flowers of Rebak
More Olive-backed Sunbirds and (the first one) a Crimson Sunbird.
A Black-naped Oriole left and a Black-crowned Night Heron right.
Black-naped Oriole left and a Black-crowned Night Heron right.
A Purple Swamphen amongst pink water lilies and water pink hyacinth. Talking about colors!
Asian Fairy Bluebird left and Scaly-breasted Munia right.
2 Oriental Pied Hornbills in Rebak and a family of Greater Hornbills (they are about twice as big!) at Gunung Raya, Langkawi.
Kingfishers: The White-throated and the Brown-winged.
Asian Paradise-Flycatchers, the one on the right honouring its name.
Another Olive-backed Sunbird. Yes, I like them.
Common Flameback right and a pair of Thick-billed Green pigeons left.
The beauty and the ugly: A Blue-tailed Bee-eater and a young Myna.
This last one shouldn’t be here. It’s a painted stork and it’s not wild. These birds have become nearly extinct in
Penang is a great spot to see some "overseas" wooden workfloats.
The reborn CARIAD in Telaga Harbor
Marleen and Nettie at the fish spa at
What's so "funny"??
Just before Nettie and Marleen we had another surprising and pleasant visit.
Ben and Carola, with their 2 children who had once showed interest in our previous yacht JAN HARING in 2004, sailed into the
You guys wanted to be on our homepage again? With this pose you qualify for a second chance. See here SOUND OF MUSIC with Michael and Em, ex Yachthaven badminton team and wakeboard coach.