How time flies when you are having fun. Some belated updates below.
May: We left Langkawi, heading south towards Johor, stopping in Penang for a few days.
April: Returned to Rebak Marina, Langkawi for a couple of weeks for a few jobs. Installed a water maker, had front shaft bearings replaced, installed Astro Satellite TV, fixed Kubota muffler.
March: In Thailand, went up to Surin and Similan Islands near the Burma border with friends Dave and Melinda on "Sassoon". Had an unusual noise coming from the drive train, not sure what it was. Had gearbox overhauled, still there so it's the shaft bearings.
February: Returned from Sydney to Meridian in Yacht Haven Marina. Spent time in Ao Chalong, Patong and other anchorages on the west coast of Phuket.
December: Cruising around Phuket. Soon we will go to Yacht Haven Marina to leave Meridian for 2 months while we return to Sydney for Christmas with the family.
November: Went to Penang on WIndchimes, met Wal and Robyn, got our Thai visas. Provisioned Meridian and took off to Thailand
October: Returned to Rebak marina. Hauled Meridian out for much-needed clean and anti-foul. 10 days later she went back inb the water.
September: Arrived in Amsterdam, spent 11 days on canal boat with Alison and Peter. Then hired car and drove to northern part of Holland to meet family and sightseeing. Visited Belgium (Antwerp, Bruges, Ghent, Brussels) and France (Lille) before returning to Holland for family gathering. See Travels Elsewhere/Holland.
August: Installed air-conditioning, sat inside and enjoyed it! Searching for family history in preparation for our trip to Holland.
July: Went to Vietnam for a wonderful trip.
June: Having work done on Meridian, then returned to Rebak Marina, Langkawi.
May: Sailing around te Phuket area, Phang Nga Bay
April: In Langkawi, restocking then off to Thailand with Windchimes.
March: Meridian on way to Langkawi. Arrived after 22 days.
February: We returned to Meridian in Miri. Judy had operation on her shoulder, then flew to Langkawi to recuperate with friends. Greg came up to help bring Meridian to Langkawi.
January: Time spent with family, and a quick trip to Hobart to visit Alison, Peter, Derek and Colleen.
September: Returned to Miri marina from France.
August: Spent the remaining 2 weeks driving to Strasbourg, then a few days in Paris before returning to Meridian.
August: Spent 2 weeks on a barge in France
July: The Rainforest World Music Festival in Kuching, then came up to Miri. Took part in the Borneo International Yacht Challenge on "Truest Passion", friends' catamaran.
June: East Coast of Malaysia and Tioman Island.
May: Started Sail Malaysia's Passage to the east Rally
April: In Sydney while Judy recovered from knee injury
March: Ian and Kellie's wedding in Sydney
Feb: In Langkawi, Malaysia
Jan: Travelling up west coast of Malaysia
December: After engine repaired, headed north. Christmas and New Year in Port Dickson.
November: Having engine repaired while in Puteri Harbour marina, Johor.
October: Indonesia, see our trip details here. Finished up in Malaysia with a broken engine.
September: Yes its been a while! Now in Labuan Bajo, west Flores Island and takeoff point for the Komodo National Park. We've seen Komodo Dragons in many locations, most on Rincha Island where we did the long walk with a Ranger to protect us.
Its been a long time since we left Darwin and had a lot of adventures, mostly pleasant. The locals have been very friendly and helpful. The Rally is falling apart. Of the original 130 boats that left Darwin on 18th July, there are about 25 in Labuan Bajo now for the official events over the next two days. The rest are scattered all points west, some in Bali, others in Kalimantan, others have left Indonesia. Quite a few boats have had problems of one sort or another, us included.
Some of the highlights have been Banda (the Spice Islands) and Wakatobi (southeast Sulawesi) with fantastic snorkelling, Komodo for the dragons. Ambon is the filthiest town we've seen with unbelievable traffic. Highlights we are looking forward to are Bali and Kumai (Kalimantan) where the orangutans live.
April/May: With a need to get to Cairns quickly for hauling out, we left Bundaberg and quickly headed north via Great Kepple, Scawfell, Whitsunday and Gloucester Islands before arriving in Townsville. After 3 days rest, it was another overnighter to Cairns.
Now in the Big Boat Shed, waiting for the weather to clear so that new antifouling can be applied.
March/April: As soon as we arrived at MidTown Marina in Bundaberg, Wal and Robyncame to take us to stay at the country residence at Yandaran. While there, Paul was able to help Wal with a bit of work on the massive shed that he is building.
Later, Wal did a few jobs on Meridian, including helping install the new wind generator. No, it doesn't generate wind! It converts the energy of the wind inot electricity.
Feb/March: After finally leaving Brisbane, we headed for Mooloolaba, intending to stay for a couple of days. The bad weather (remember the Pacific Adventurer and the oil spill?) kept us in port for more than two weeks. Finally a break came that allowed us to cross the infamous Wide bay Bar. From there we went via Kingfisher Resort, Hervey Bay to Bundaberg.
Jan: Returned from Christmas and New Year in Sydney and visiting Alison, Derek, Colleen, Jackie in Hobart. While back on Meridian in Aquatic Paradise, Judy lost vision in one eye temporarily. This necessitated various visits to eye specialists, heart scans and cardiologist, over the course of Jan and Feb. All clear in the end, but a bit of a worry at the time. During this time we were on the pile moorings on the Brisbane River, near the Botanic Gardens.
December 2008 We finally untied from the marina, crossed Hervey Bay to Kingfisher Resort for a day, then down through the Great Sandy Straits to Tin Can Bay. Met by Bob and Julia, and visited their stunning new house for dinner.
After a couple of days in TCB, it was off over the Wide Bay Bar down to Moreton Bay. Stopped in Rivergate Marina for a night to catch up with Peter and Donna on "Two Up", then up the Brisbane River to anchor off the Botanical Gardens. It's a lovely spot, right in the heart of the CBD and it's free!
After a week there, we took Meridian down to Aquatic Paradise in Birkdale to tie up on a private pontoon while we fly to Sydney for Christmas/New Year with family, then to Hobart in the New Year.
November 2008 We left Meridian in MidTown Marina while we flew to Sydney. First event was Tom's 4th birthday which was great fun spread over a couple of days. The following week we attended the Memorial Service for Larry, held at the Royal Motor Yacht Club, Newport. While it was a sad occasion, many people turned up for what was a memorable event.
On our return to Meridian, we started the major job of relining the engine room with new insulation. Also had the belt-drive system checked out with new bearings and belts ordered. Danny the Dirty Detroit Deisel had his first checkup in 8 years, getting two new injectors and minor adjustments.
October 2008 Our first trip down 'The Narrows'! then into Gladstone Marina for a week. Stayed in Pancake Creek, meeting Alan and Patricia Lucas. From there to Bundaberg MidTown Marina, another first. Visits to Wal and Robyn at their country residence at Yandaran were most relaxing.
Most sad news received - our great friend Larry Turnure died from a heart attack while visiting family in the US.
September 2008 Finally left Airlie and made our way down the coast, via Goldsmith, Brampton, Scawfell, Digby, Middle Percy, Marble, Hexham, Island Head Crk, Port Clinton, Great Keppel Island, Rosslyn Bay.
August 2008 Tony and Sandra Harris joined us in Airlie Beach for a fortnight. Visited Stonehaven, Cid Hbr, Bait Reef, Gloucester Island, Bowen before returning to Airlie.
July 2008 Ian, Kellie, Tom and Mia came to stay with us for a week. Picked them up at Hamilton Island, went around Whitsunday Island before delivering them back to Hammo. Paul reached a significant age.
June 2008 Work has finished, so we are now relaxing with Wal and Robbie at their new house at Yandaran, outside of Bundaberg. We will then return to Meridian and hang around the Whitsundays for a while.
May 2008 Paul was working in Werris Creek and Boggabri NSW, logging coal bore cores. Judy was on Meridian in Abel Point Marina, Airlie Beach until just before Mothers Day. She then flew down to Sydney to spend some time with the grandchildren.
April 2008 Arrived in Airlie Beach
March 2008 In Townsville, Judy ill with Ross River Fever.
February 2008 In Cairns Blue Waters Marina.
January 2008 Finally launched Meridian in Cairns after major work including new freezer and new floor.
December 2007 To Sydney for Christmas and New Year with the family
November 2007 Meridian having new galley built and re-paint.
October 2007 In the Big Boat Shed, Cairns for repairs.
September 2007 Waiting in Marlin Marina, Cairns for insurance approval
August 2007 Run aground on reef at Panasia Island in the Louisiades, PNG. Refloated and sailed back to Cairns.
July 2007 In the Louisiades, PNG with Two Up, Lode-Star and Bella Via.