Captain's Log

Archive for the 'Day’s Run' Category

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Day’s Run – 11 December, 2018

At daybreak, the call came to loose the square sails. Crew climbed aloft in the rigging, pulling themselves up the shrouds, laying out onto the yards and loosing the furled sail. By 0800, the watches on deck hauled on lines, yanked on braces and heaved on halyards, setting our eight current square sails (our royals are not yet bent on again after being sent down in Bali). Within half an hour our engine was fully shut down, presenting a peaceful calm atmosphere as we moved forward with the wind in our canvas. This marks the first day of sailing since leaving Bali, for those new crew members who joined in Bali it’s rather exciting to experience the feel of the ship under sail.

This morning crew members have been busy; Kimba, of Ontario, and Dustin, of Nova Scotia, worked away on a new jib for Sea Never Dry, our Lunenburg Dory Shop-built brightly painted dory. We hope to do lots of small boat sailing in the Caribbean, it’ll be great to have a jib that suits the boat properly. Colin, of Nova Scotia, worked with carpenter Carlos, of Ontario, working together on the replacement piece for the spanker gaff. Abbey, of North Carolina, scampered aloft to add patch servings to the main shrouds, when we are braced up sharp the yard or sail can chafe against the shroud, adding patch servings protects both parties.

The sailmaking team, with the help of the on-duty watch, hauled out the new spanker from below the sole, below the salon deck, and spread it out onto the quarterdeck to work on the corner patches. The sail had its second layout completed in Bali when four crew members and our sailmaker, John of Massachusetts, took it to a beach nearby our anchored ship, laid it out on a tarp and worked in the hot Bali sun to complete the second and final layout. As you can imagine the corners of a sail get a lot of wear and tear, they need to be fastened with extra strength to ensure its longevity. Like most things onboard a square rigger, they require both attention to detail and an urgency to get the job completed in a timely manner. The ship comes first, after all without her, we wouldn’t be halfway around the globe.

From: Bali, Indonesia
Towards: Rodrigues
Date: Tuesday, December 11th, 2018
Noon Position: 12°50.2′ S x 109°51.9′ E
Course + Speed: WxN 1/2 N + 5.9 kts
Wind direction + Force: SxW + 3
Swell Height + Direction: 2-3m + S
Weather: Hot, sunny
Day’s Run: 139.6 nm
Passage Log: 366 nm
Distance to Port: 2698 nm
Voyage: 14206.8 nm
Sails Set: T’gallants, upper and lower tops’ls, mainsail and foresail, flying jib, outer jib, inner jib, main t’gallant stays’l, main topmast stays’l, mizzen stays’l

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Day’s Run – 10 December, 2018

It’s Monday morning on board Picton Castle, the deck brushes were in use this morning, scrubbing away grime that builds up quickly. Just like that, we are back into the swing of things at sea. The sailmakers are set up on the hatch, with their sailmaking benches, needles and palms in hand they seam away on a new royal. This week we have Ted of North Carolina assisting the ship’s sailmaker John.

Kimba of Ontario joyfully lends a helping hand by adding a new diamond seizing onto the stirrup of the main upper topsail starboard foot rope. Once rigger Anne-Laure, of France, finishes the second diamond seizing the foot rope will be sent back up to its rightful home.

Carpenter Carlos, of Ontario, preps to scarf on a new piece of wood onto the spanker gaff in order to replace the rotting piece. Third mate Corey, of Saskatchewan, and bosun Anders, of Denmark, sent down the anchor fish tackle as it won’t be in use for some time, and it could use an overhaul. Up it will go again when we are near land next.

There is a good atmosphere on deck, which sets a nice pace for the week ahead. Everyone is glad to have returned to sea. Now we keep our fingers crossed that we will soon shut down the engine and sail onwards across the Indian Ocean.

From: Bali, Indonesia
Towards: Rodrigues or Reunion
Date: Monday, December 10th, 2018
Noon Position: 11°41.0′ sx 111°55.0′ E
Course + Speed: SW 3/4 W + 6.2 kts
Wind direction + Force: SxW + 3
Swell Height + Direction: 2m + SSW
Weather: Hot, sunny
Day’s Run: 141 nm
Passage Log: 125 nm
Distance to Port: 2835 nm
Voyage: 14062.9 nm
Sails Set: None, motoring

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Bali – Sailing Day

The Picton Castle has had a nice long visit in Bali. Plenty good stories to tell. Some crew coming and going. Lots of nasi goreng, mei goreng, no shortage of Bintang and Bali Kopi, even cat-poo-chino. Lots of beautiful carvings, ebony boxes, batik sarongs and more. But now it was time to sail onward to the west.

Early morning before dawn we could hear big thunder and see lightning off in the distance followed by true tropical downpours. As dawn eased on to the scene we could see small double out-riggers fishing in the calm waters near the reef at the mouth of the harbour. Towering cloudscapes made for dramatic backdrops.

All hands were to be back aboard at 0800 after their last run ashore. We hauled back the big admiralty anchor we had been spinning around all this time. I was sure it was fouled and thought it best to clear it and cat it in the harbour with the other anchor down. Amazingly enough, it was not fouled. But good to get it catted without the ship lurching about. The waters of Serangan are a pretty fertile soup and we actually got barnacles on the skiff and the anchor chain at the waterline on the short time we were here.

Then on to finish stowing the ship for sea and waiting for Immigration to show up onboard to check us all out to make sure we were all leaving. And waiting for Made Alon and family to come down and say goodbye. Made gave so many good tours and helped us in so many ways. Made and his family have been friends of the ship for 20 years. A small send-off was in order.

In the end, Immigration trusted us and our good agents to see that we were all leaving with the ship and decided no need to visit the ship. Made Gerip, also a friend of the ship, and his helper agents saw us off at the small dock at Serangan. Then Made Alon and Wayan and Gita showed up for a small send-off. Then out to Picton Castle at anchor to heave up and head to sea steering southwest to find some useful winds. It looks to me like we would need to motor a couple days or so to find the tradewinds out here. But nothing wrong with motoring a bit to get us back into a sea routine.

We will miss Bali. But Bali isn’t going anywhere and I am sure many of us will return some day.

So, on a hot tropical day with little wind, our Picton Castle set off westward bound across the broad Indian Ocean.

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Day’s Run – 9 December, 2018

Wow! After two weeks in amazing Bali this is our first full day at sea. It’s a Sunday and it’s our dear shipmate Niko’s birthday. Niko has sailed with Picton Castle on a number of voyages since 2009 when he joined in Grenada. Since then he has been known for his delicious efforts in the galley, and at times overly spicy meals, his immense vocabulary skills, his unusual fashion sense, and his nickname Cupcake. We won’t be eating cupcakes tonight, but we will be devouring a delicious chocolate cake that Liz, of New Brunswick, is planning to create in honour of Niko’s birthday.

Today the crew has been instructed to rest and readjust to life at sea. Many are taking the opportunity to do their laundry, catch up on sleep and reading, while Abbey gleefully devours a large amount of chicken leftover from the delicious lunch that they galley team provided. Today’s cooking duo is lead by rejoining crew member, Ted of North Carolina, who went home for his son’s wedding during the ship’s passage to Bali, and new crew member, Sammy of South Africa.

Today at 1430 there will be a power shower, where we rig up the fire hose and spray salt water down on deck, like a shower. The ship is significantly cooler than on our passage over the top of Australia, but it is still hot on deck in the sun and below in the bunks. A power shower is the perfect way to cool off in the mid day heat, to be followed by a Christmas Committee meeting to discuss the holiday season plans in greater detail. A Sunday at Sea is a wonderful way to start off a new passage and a new leg. With a busy week ahead crew members can prep for what is on the horizon.

From: Bali, Indonesia
Towards: Rodrigues or Reunion
Date: Sunday December 10th, 2018
Noon Position: 10°06.9′ S – 113°42.5′ E
Course + Speed: SW 1/2 W + 5.8 kts
Wind direction + Force: SW + 2
Swell Height + Direction: 1-2m + SW by S
Weather: Hot, sunny
Day’s Run: 125 nm
Passage Log: 104 nm
Distance to Port: 2960 nm
Voyage: 13914.3 nm
Sails Set: None, motoring

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Day’s Run – 8 December, 2018

All hands on deck, 0800 muster, sea watches posted, the crew worked through the intense Bali heat to heave up anchor, get the last of the provisions onboard and lash down or stow any moveable object on deck. Customs and immigration gave us the go ahead, stamping our passports and we hoisted the skiff.

Hoisting the skiff is a feeling like the airtight door being sealed closed on board a plane when you’re about to fly to a new destination. Cutting you off from the world outside the door, in our case, outside our hull, and focusing your brain on the journey ahead towards new ocean and land.

At 1400 the anchor was hoisted onto the foc’sl head and we motored off, getting through the canal and steering southwest in search of wind to fill our sails. This marks the beginning of Leg 3! We cannot believe it. At times it feels as though we’ve embarked on this adventure only a few weeks ago, at other times we get the sense that we’ve been together for quite some time; eight months to be exact. It’s amazing to think we are halfway around the world!

Bali was fantastic, for both the ship and the crew. In terms of the ship, we were able to paint topsides, send down the spanker gaff for maintenance and send down a number of sails: the spanker, both t’gallants, the main topmast staysail and the main t’gallant staysail, at the beginning of our stay. Prior to leaving, we bent on both t’gallants, main topmast staysail, main t’gallant staysail and the outer jib. The on-duty watches while in port were never dull, even at anchor sail training continues.

When the watches were stood down for a few days, the crew were able to explore the vast and diverse island of Bali. There is something for everyone in Bali, the Bali blend as they call it. It’s a healthy mix of old and new, hip, trendy with tradition at the centre. Bali is what you make it, a representation of life. If you desire peace, quiet and tranquility you can obtain that in Bali. If you’re an adventure seeker or a beach bum, those two are easily obtained. Each crew member was able to create their own vacation.

The biggest outlet that is enjoyable for those who love fine craftsmanship, decor and design, Bali was the place for them to shop! The shopping is rather impressive, fun and challenging. Many shipmates are taking or sending home treasures that will last a lifetime.

From: Bali, Indonesia
Towards: Rodrigues or Reunion
Date: Saturday, December 8th, 2018
Noon Position: Serangan Harbour
Course + Speed: S + 5 kts (at 1500)
Wind direction + Force: W + 3 (at 1500)
Swell Height + Direction: 3m + SxW (at 1500)
Weather: Sunny
Day’s Run: 0
Passage Log: 0
Distance to Port: 3064′
Voyage: 13775.8′
Sails Set: Fore and aft


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Picton Castle at Serangan, Bali, Indonesia

Having sailed in to Bali from the Torres Strait between Australia and Papua New Guinea two weeks ago, the crew of the Picton Castle is getting ready to sail for Reunion Island in the Indian Ocean. I am pretty sure everyone loves Bali. We have only ever had one crew member not like Bali some years ago – but he never left the port to go explore this magical island. Hard to imagine that.

It looks like the gang has had a grand time here in Bali. All sorts of treks to and in and around Ubud, a cultural centre here in Bali. Traditional dance at elaborate temples. Dawn hikes up to the volcano. Visits to the Sacred Monkey Forest. Full of little wise guys with tails. Roadside satay. A few took time to enjoy the many Bali style spas. Plenty of shopping in amazing markets for beautiful things; fabrics, clothes, carvings, swords, antiques made to order and so on. Plenty of time off the ship to see and enjoy as much as we can. Even a wedding onboard. Tonight is a thank you dinner for those that have helped us so much here.

We tried a new port this time here in Bali. The commercial port of Benoa has been getting cramped and hard to anchor there these days. So we anchored in the open bay of Serangan not far from Benoa in southern Bali. This is more a small fishing port with some yachts and a few ferry boats to nearby islands. This bay is packed with what look like dugouts, outrigger canoes. And that they are but even as they look exactly like traditional wooden canoes, in fact, most of them are made of fiberglass and their outrigger pontoons are sections of curved PVC pipe. Makes perfect sense really. Saves on trees I guess. A few of these pretty craft still operate under sail. Nice home stays and friendly warungs (small diners) featuring tasty Balinese dishes. Everywhere we look little offering temples. Seaweed drying on the seawalls for later eating, drying fish too. Lots of scooters but not many cars here at Serangan.

We had a few local day workers come out to the ship for a few days. We were pretty impressed with how good they were at chipping paint and preparing steel for recoating. They worked hard and steady and with polite smiles too. And got a lot done. We sent the spanker gaff down for inspection and recoating, and some minor repair. Topsides are painted up. We are a bit surprised to see barnacles along the waterline under the stern as we just drydocked in Fiji. But this might be a very fecund harbour for marine growth. We will see as we sail.

Coming up rainy season here. A big downpour almost every day. But now the ship is all fueled up, Donald and his helpers have done a massive food shop and are getting all that re-stowed, a few more sails bent and soon we will be headed west-southwest across the Indian Ocean. The winds look good and the weather favourable for a good passage.

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Greetings from Picton Castle’s shore office

Greetings from Picton Castle’s shore office in Lunenburg, Nova Scotia, Canada!

The ship is currently in Bali, Indonesia and the Captain and crew are busy getting things checked off the pre-departure list.  The next passage is a long one, about a month at sea, as Picton Castle sails across the Indian Ocean from Bali to Rodrigues (an island that’s part of Mauritius), then Reunion (an overseas territory of France), then on to Cape Town, South Africa.  There really aren’t any places to stop between Bali and Rodrigues, so we need to be extra careful about our preparations for this passage, making sure we have enough food, fuel and supplies to get us the whole way there.


While our usual Captain’s Log writers are preoccupied with shopping and provisioning in Bali, I’m writing to tell you about what we’re working on here in Lunenburg.  We, of course, are always on call for the ship and respond to any immediate needs right away, but we’re also working ahead to get the next things set up.  One of our main areas of focus for the past few months is the summer of 2019 and the voyage that will take Picton Castle into the Great Lakes to participate in the Tall Ships Challenge.

The Tall Ships Challenge is a series of events and races organized by Tall Ships America.  It moves around and is held in different waters every year.  In 2018, the Tall Ships Challenge was held in the Gulf of Mexico and Picton Castle participated, visiting Galveston, Texas; Pensacola, Florida; and New Orleans, Louisiana.  In 2019, the Tall Ships Challenge will take place in the Great Lakes.  There are 10 host ports, six in the USA and four in Canada, and the ships will visit each one, one weekend after another.  In between the ports there are often races for the ships.

We can’t always participate as we’re often in another part of the world sailing to different waters and ports, but we like to be part of the Tall Ships Challenge when our schedule allows.  Joining a fleet of majestic traditional sailing vessels, barques, brigs, brigantines, schooners, ketches, sloops and more, is pretty awe-inspiring.  We have a lot of fun at sea, sailing in company with these other vessels.  And in port, our crew have a great time getting to know their shipmates and crew from other ships, joining a community of people who are passionate about what they do.

The last time Picton Castle was part of the Tall Ships Challenge in the Great Lakes was 2006.  So, 13 years later, we decided it was time to do it again.  I was on sailing on the ship that summer myself.  I had just completed a world circumnavigation as a trainee and somehow convinced Captain Moreland to take me on for the summer as the purser.  I remember arriving in Cleveland, Ohio, the first port of that summer’s series of tall ships events, and being overwhelmed.  There were thousands of people on the waterfront to watch the ships sail in.  At our berth, the crowd was held back by fences while line handlers greeted us and helped get the ship tied up properly.  There was a whirlwind of signing security documents, getting the gangway set up so we would be ready for our US Coast Guard inspection, meeting with event organizers to confirm all the details of the event, and then, finally, getting to meet the crowds of people who waited so patiently for their turn to come aboard and tour the decks.  There was a real electricity in the air, a combination of anticipation and wonder.

I have so many great memories from that summer; an impromptu game of soccer with crew from a number of different ships on a grassy spot in the festival grounds in Cleveland after the festival was closed to the public; getting a free haircut in Bay City because every business in town, including the beauty school, wanted to be part of the event and give something to the crew to welcome us; watching a TV news camera operator running down Navy Pier in Chicago with his camera held at knee-level to capture some film footage of our ship’s cat for the evening news; a lovely barbeque dinner on the wharf in Erie, provided by the family of a crew member; visiting Lambeau Field, the Green Bay football mecca, when I accompanied Captain Moreland to the Captain’s Briefing; an impromptu crew picnic on an island in the St. Lawrence River; a pre-dinner swim call when Picton Castle was anchored in Lake Erie.

In 2019, we plan to visit ten ports: Toronto, Ontario; Buffalo, New York; Cleveland, Ohio; Bay City, Michigan; Green Bay, Wisconsin; Kenosha, Wisconsin; Sarnia, Ontario; Kingsville, Ontario; Erie, Pennsylvania; and Brockville, Ontario.  If you live in or near one of those ports, I hope you’ll come visit!  Our decks will be open for public tours and we’d love to show you around.

We have also just recently announced opportunities for trainees to sail in the summer of 2019.  If you’ve been thinking of joining us but don’t have the time or money to sail on a long voyage, this is your chance.  Some of the legs are as long as three weeks, but we’ve also included a couple of one-week legs just for people like you.  Of course, you can also combine legs and sail for a longer time too.  All of the dates, ports and costs can be found on our website.

The distances between ports on this voyage are not far and we expect that we will have to motor some passages, but you will still be immersed in the experience of being crew on a square rigger.  You’ll stand watches at sea and in port, take your turn at the helm, and take your turn helping in the galley.  Because we’re expecting less time under sail, we’ve put together a plan for more seamanship learning opportunities, so lots of workshops and hands-on practice in a variety of skills from the Age of Sail.  Put that together with meeting crew from around the world, seeing concerts and fireworks and whatever entertainment the host ports provide and watching other ships sailing by while sailing your own, and it sounds like a pretty great summer vacation plan!  Actually, one trainee said it best when he told me, “it’s not a vacation, it’s an adventure.”

We’re just starting to get trainee applications coming in now, which means I will get to start interviewing prospective candidates soon.  Trudi usually handles the day-to-day communications with trainee applicants and accepted trainees, as well as collecting all the paperwork.  I usually get to do the phone interviews with each of the applicants.  We keep track of everyone and where they stand in the process on a big white board on the office wall.

In the meantime, we’re also working with the ten different host ports to confirm all the arrangements and to see how we can work together to make the events a great success.  We’re sorting out everything from what kind of electrical plugs we need to provide shore power to the ship, to what day and time we need to arrive.

As always, we’re here if you have any questions or want to talk about joining Picton Castle as a trainee crew member on the last leg of this current world circumnavigation voyage, or in the Great Lakes in 2019!


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Bali – Day 3

Serangan Bay, day three in Bali, Picton Castle halfway around the world.

Sitting at our Warung

The day here at anchor in Serangan comes in with a tropical rain shower – the monsoon change is upon us – followed by clearing and then a fine view of the Mount Agung volcano well to our north, for a while anyway before the haze fills back in. Early morning ferry boats from town headed out to the nearby islands of Nusa Penida and Lombok stream out of the bay and send us modest wakes as a form of a morning wake up greeting. Earlier we heard the faithful called to prayer over far away loudspeakers on this calm morning.

Almost all the signing off crew have headed ashore for some Bali time and their next adventure. Some have gone straight back home to Sweden and Canada. Really? Seems like hanging around in Bali in late November would be a fun idea. Since that is where we are. Plenty of time before Christmas. We wish them all good luck and joy. And we have the new gang aboard now too, getting settled and going through the comprehensive orientation process we require of those just joining. Lots to go over. The new folks are from Nova Scotia, South Africa, Alberta, and Belgium.

There is a big high regional trash dump we can see, like a low flat mountain over the masts of the fish boats and ferries miles far off in the distance. Hardly noticeable, except when the wind is directly in that quarter. Then we notice it just fine. Smells of sweet rotting fruit more than anything else. This morning we moved the Picton Castle a couple hundred yards to the south and re-anchored. In spite of anchoring at the coordinates we were given, it seems that we were in some sort of private anchor spot. Hard to tell. Looked like heaps of room around us but so it goes. It was good to test the recently overhauled anchor windlass under load anyway. No harm. No problem. Better where we are anchored now anyway.

We have four Balinese fellows out on the ship as day workers to knockarust on the quarterdeck taff rails. My goodness they are doing a great and thorough job. Very impressive. They bring their own lunch of difficult to define Balinese foods. Except for the rice. The rice looks just like rice. The rest? Smells good, but not sure what it all is. They are not at all interested in our pizza and macaroni salads. Nope, not a little bit. Yards squared, sails loosed to dry after the rain. White topsides getting white again after a month at sea. Garbage ashore, all 17 bags. And some running around today looking for bits and pieces for this and that. Water filters, chain drives, and odds and ends. And the other two-thirds of our gang off seeing Bali.

The free watches are off at Ubud, Denpasar, Kuta and who knows where else, on tours, taking in temples, festivals, night markets, great food, nice homestays overlooking a rice paddy, maybe shopping for carvings and fabrics, maybe a little nightlife. We will find out when they get back.

Dawson, ship’s boy and my oldest unmarried son, went off with friends to see the amazing temple at Uluwatu today. An elegant and large temple perched high on a cliff over the sea, it is an amazing place to visit. It is also home to a large band of well organised larcenous monkeys. A small group of these rascals will distract you, another one will come bounding up out of nowhere and grab your sunglasses off your head and run away a short distance. To hold them hostage until you offer a suitable ransom, such as a banana, which upon receipt of said banana our simian artful dodger will fling the sunglasses back at you and they will all scamper off swiftly. Cheeky little brutes. Apart from the antics of these furry little devils visiting the temple at Uluwatu is to allow a perceptible wave of serenity to wash over you.

For Dawson yesterday was a visit to the turtle sanctuary nearby where he fed lettuce to turtles he told me, he told me that they were hungry, followed by a visit to a brazenly touristy waterpark where he had as much fun as a little boy can have. Anything to do with water keeps Dawson going. Soon, we must go to the zoo where we must see a Komodo Dragon. I think he will like the elephants and tigers too, but right now its all about Komodo Dragons.

We are also getting ready for a wedding onboard tomorrow afternoon. Much thought going into décor, food, cake, libations and whatever we can think of. Better stop the rust-busting in time to clean up I guess. I am to officiate at this wedding of a sister of one of our crew (and her fiancé, of course). All the weddings I have performed so far are still sticking so I must be doing something right, no?

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Bali – Day 1

Yesterday the Picton Castle steamed into Serangan just to the north of Benoa, the large commercial port on the southern tip of Bali, Indonesia. We had a very good passage the 3,000 miles from Vanuatu. An excellent sailing passage of 1,500 miles from Santo to Cape York, the northernmost tip of Australia, followed by a swift transit of the famous Torres Strait, fair tides every inch of the way, lucky us. I was worried about the prospect of lack of wind on the Indian Ocean side of Cape York but we had many good days of sailing before the wind petered out to nothing and we had to fire up the main engine. It also was not as hot as I expected although it certainly was hot enough, plenty hot, but it could have been worse, a lot worse. But mostly we had smooth seas, gentle breezes and good time under power. We made ample use of all our awnings to keep the beastly sun off us, and it is hard in this part of the world. Something to do with an ozone hole above I have been told. But in due course after passing the Gulf of Carpenteria, passing through the Arafura Sea, Timor Sea and into the Indian Ocean we sailed up to Bali in the haze of volcanos and smoke from fires and made our way into Serangan.

The harbour is well protected, the anchorage seems like good holding. There are all kinds of exotic Balinese fishing craft and ferry boats working from here. Red tile roofs dominate the shoreline. Clearing in was swift and cheerful. The gang keen to get ashore after almost a month at sea. Some family have come to visit their crew members.

My first day is predictably jammed up with getting our Bali visit started. Crew signing off, and on, returning crew, meeting with agents, looking after fuel, food, ship buying and such, Made Alon setting up tours, we are even having a wedding aboard too! Serangan is a bustling seaside village.  The landing is crowded with ferry boat passengers at the ends of the day. Vendors and hawkers all trying to make eye contact to assure us that their cold drink or sweet pineapple or alligator fruit is the best. Plenty of places to get a cold Tebotel or Bintang or a nice nasi goreng meal, low houses many with a charming old Dutch colonial feel to them. And plenty of stone carving about of Barong and other spirits. I like it here a lot and I think will be good for our Picton Castle gang. Not posh and not too touristy, even a bit scruffy, but plenty warung and things to do as well as a good jumping off spot to explore Bali over the next bunch of days. There is a little hotel with a pool nearby, maybe just fine for ship’s boy Dawson who is mad about pools and swimming. The harbour probably not clean enough for pleasant swimming.

View from the hotel

We are getting four local workers to knockarust the rail and waterways on the quarterdeck. Get them restored and ready for paint. Nothing wrong with us chipping paint ourselves but we have much else to do with the crew: rigging, sailmaking, carpentry, etc and still we will have plenty knockarust left over. A steel ship never lacks for a spot of rust busting. The Amazing Donald went ashore as soon as he could yesterday, through the bustling crowds to a market and loaded up on fresh food for a few days. Colourful boats everywhere, brightly painted outriggers, big pinisi ketches, ferry boats back and forth with their own rush hour patterns.

The 2nd Mate Dirk and I went ashore out for a walk on this evening of our first day in Bali. To see what we could see and see about an evening dinner somewhere. After landing at the very busy town dock and a ten-minute walk along the waterfront we came upon a small warung (Bali roadside diner, great food, cheap, where the locals eat) on pilings over the bay. There with a good deal of gesturing and pointing to bowls of this and that in glass display case we were served a fine tasty repast while watching the bright painted outrigger canoe fishing boats bob at anchor nearby, Picton Castle anchored in the far background. Two little girls were playing in the water alongside the sloping stone sea wall looking like it might date back to colonial times. A young woman in lace blouse and sarong with a belt around her waist made from a piece of yellow cloth came along and we watched he set out her offerings on the seawall. It is far more than just setting down the bamboo tray. There is ceremony carried out with dignity in the fading evening light. Later we went and looked at the small, maybe 5” square, palm leaf offering tray to see what was in it. Bits of rice and fruit, an incense stick with smoke spiraling up and even small chocolate candies in their wrappers, a couple cigarettes too. Quite a bit of treasure. Before setting down the offering she had simply swept aside the older dried up offering tray down into the lapping water joining what looked like a few other older such trays from earlier days no doubt. Across the street was a beautiful small residential hotel. $250 a month to stay there. Can’t afford to stay home.

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Day’s Run – 19 November, 2018

Indian Ocean Bound for Bali, south of Sumbawa, west of Sumba

After another evening of half the crew sleeping soundly on the hatch, Monday morning started with a hot sunrise on our backs as the crew sipped their morning coffee on the aloha deck. After breakfast our avid fisherman Colin spent his morning untangling his rather large fishing line, on-lookers admired his patience and perseverance. Rigger Abbey, with the assistance of James, changed out the fore lower topsail sheets. This required each of them splicing the ends of the new line onto the sheets cleats, applying two whippings and reeving them through the blocks that are attached to chains. Annie and Dawson spent the morning enjoying a rousing game of ‘Go Fish’, until he decided it was time to assist carpenter Carlos with puttying the open seams on the quarterdeck he had just caulked. Sailmaker John is one seam away from completing all of the seaming on the spanker, this is the last step before its second layout, which will hopefully take place in Bali. The scullery team, Mandy, David and Rhyanne, had their hands full deep cleaning veggie lockers and freezers, but with the help of the Beach Boys they’ve been thoroughly enjoying their day. We’re full steam ahead as we near the home stretch for Bali, arriving in Indonesia will mark the end of the second leg and pretty much halfway around this world.  It’s hard to believe we’ve been at sea for 7 months!

From: Vanuatu

Towards: Bali

Date: Monday, November 19, 2018

Noon Position: 09°47.6′ S – 117°21.3′ E

Course + Speed: NW by W + 7.1 kts

Wind direction + Force: Westerly + 4

Swell Height + Direction: 2m + Westerly

Weather: Hot

Day’s Run: 169.6 nm

Passage Log: 3175.5 nm

Distance to Port: 140 nm

Voyage: 13545.1 nm

Sails Set: None, motoring


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