The last week has seen a lot of progress in our preparations for the Indian Ocean crossing. I’ve updated the map shown on the right of our main page and blog, which links to an interactive version which you can see in this post. It shows our new route which is to leave through the Indonesian Sunda Straights to the south of us, and then cross to Cocos Keeling. We will stop also at Rodrigues before continuing to Mauritius and Reunion. We will be taking several months to do this because we need to wait until the South African winter (June-September) is over before we continue to South Africa later in the year.
Cocos (Keeling) Islands, our first stop, are part of Australia. It is a nice atoll with a well-protected lagoon. We hope to enjoy a few weeks there before our biggest passage (2000 nautical miles to Rodrigues).During the past week, we completed two provisioning runs here in Johor Bahru area. I made a trip last week to Singapore to get an Indonesia SIM card and top-ups so we can have Internet as we pass through the islands there. I also got some new bungy cord to replace aging cord on our trampoline mats between Tahina’s bows. And, I got some new stainless polish so we can finish cleaning and protecting our stainless around the boat. Today we completed our second big trip to Singapore for more provision – in particular a stop at an Aussie butcher to get some good quality meet for our freezer. We hired a taxi to driving us straight from the butcher back to the marina (with stops at Second Link bridge customs/immigration for both countries of course).
Yesterday, our friends on s/v Callisto and s/v Kilkea arrived here at Puteri. We are happy to see them one last time before we depart. We hope to see them again later in the year in South Africa.We’ve sent our LPG tank to be filled, had scuba tanks filled, replaced the tramp cord, and many other minor tasks as well. Karen is nearly done with the primary spray dodger. She says the other one will take a lot less time now that she has the design and techniques figured out. This weekend I plan to dive on Tahina’s bottoms and clean the hulls once again. We also plan to do some maintenance on our winches over the next few days.
Next Monday is my last eye checkup – and last trip (hopefully) to Singapore. Progress has been very good and the eye is seeing quite well. What a huge relief to have such a positive end to this long recovery!
After that, we just need to wait for the right weather, clear out, get our fuel, and depart! No particular rush at the end, but we expect to be gone before next Friday.