Position: Anchored Thursday Island (TI)
At 0600 I was up to the sounds of the watch bracing the yards and the mutterings from Alan about how we are going too fast and that he did not know how to slow down! We all ready had the spritsail and both topsails off and still we were making 6 knots. I checked the tide tables and calculated when we would be at the sandbar, which was a cause of concern for me. After consulting with Alan we decided to keep pressing on and that there will be still enough tide. I asked for all hands to be called at 0700 for working the sail and preparing the anchor, then, turned in for a few more minutes of sleep until that time arrived. We approached the channel with plenty of tide with us and then, as with all plans, the tide decided to swing across the entrance giving us tremendous lee way. So much so that we were unable to make the entrance which a few minutes ago looked easy. On with the motors and with Nicko at the helm we threaded the narrow entrance and into the anchorage.The wind is very strong and where the main town at TI is located it is pushing us onshore which is not very comfortable. So I decide to take the more conservative option and anchor over near Horn Island. There are lots of yachts near where we are heading and of course they have the best spots. I picked what looked to be an ideal place and we anchored, a German yacht was near by and he looked worried but said nothing, to me every thing looked fine but I had forgotten that we had rope instead of chain for an anchor warp. So when the tide eased we swung to the wind and closed on to the yacht. It was anchor up and reposition, not an easy job for all, as the power to pull the anchor is Norwegian steam (that is to say muscle power). We repositioned the anchor only to have it drag a half hour later, so on with the engines and heave away on the anchor warp. This time I take the vessel to a new, less crowded location and this is where we stay for our time here. Wally has gone ashore to locate his passport, which was to be sent up here after the first one he applied for went missing after leaving the Australian Passport Office. I also asked for him to pick up a ferry timetable for all of us when we get shore leave. The remainder of the day was spent for the crew maintaining and repairing the rig. For myself assembling the remainder of our charts into a portfolio with a passage plan for the leg to Jakarta, this does take some time as there is next to no room in the aft cabin to spread out the charts. I share the space with Shannon who is reconciling our accounts and doing a great job and Nic who is taking an inventory of our medical stores. It is a good work team as each of us actually enjoys the job in hand and the time moves along quickly. I have planned the next route along the north side of Indonesia so as to enjoy some of the scenery along the way, we are also looking for a place to stop for a day to give the crew some time off before we reach Jakarta. I think once we arrive in Jakarta we will have no time to our selves as this will be the kick off point for the traditional route back to Holland. Looking forward to catching up on some sleep.
Glenn R. Williams