Thursday, 10 May 2012


Joan arrived from Perth on a late afternoon flight on the 8th of April. We spent several days showing her the sights before heading south to Langkawi once again. Our route took us to Koh Pan Yi, the Moslem stilt village at the top of Phang Nga Bay. From here we sailed south along the eastern side of the bay, stopping at Railay Beach for a wonderful dinner ashore amongst the picturesque and spectacular limestone karst formations, famous in this region. 
We snorkeled at the Bamboo Group, just north and east of Phi Phi Don before heading to anchor for the night at Phi Phi Don on the north western side. The snorkeling is quite good here on a good day! There are lots of fish but sadly the coral is quite degraded. Our next stop was Koh Lantas northern anchorage where we went ashore to partake of the local delicacies at a quiet river front restaurant. Joan did a bit of tourist shopping before we made our way back to Taipan. The highlight of her trip was the visit to Koh Muk and the Emerald Cave.  The inside of the cave was lit with the lovely green light for which the cave is named.
Joan and David off to explore the hong.

The weather was great, with only a small shower for her whole visit.
Koh Kradan, Koh Bulon Li, for a swim, and Taratao, where we had our farewell Thailand, anchorage, then on via Hole in the Wall to Kuah town on Langkawi Island.
In Kuah we hired a car to do the sights for a day then on to Rebak Island Marina to pack up Taipan and ready her so we could fly out to Australia.
At the Moslem Stilt village
On the 16th of April we flew together to Perth via KL. The first few days were taken up almost exclusively, with visits to various of Davids specialists to determine the progress of his recovery following treatment for prostate cancer. All reports were very pleasing with significant reduction in PSA and a positive prognosis. Upon receipt of this good news we were finally able to start planning for the next passage.

 We first spent a week with family in Albany before Tim and Vanessa's wedding at Narrikup on the 28th. It was a great day spent in Steven and Kerry's beautiful garden. Almost all the family were there so we caught up with everyone's news. On Sunday, the day following, we had to head back to Perth to drop the car and be at the airport at first light on Monday the 30th April.
Lucky we didn't delay our return. When we arrived aboard we discovered that the solar panels had shut down so the batteries were flat and the fridge and freezer were pretty off. A few extra days would have been horrific!. We didn't loose everything. All the meats I had vacuum sealed with my trusty Sumbeam were fine. The big piece of commercially packed had to go though. Sigh!
I took a couple of days to recharge everything and get the fridge and freezer working and cool again. A bit of shopping was in order so we vacated the Marina to anchor in Kuah town and hire a car. Several more days of provisioning and a very welcome and long overdue catch up with Jack and Norma on Egress ll ensured we had some good food and fine wine in great company. Monday the 7th a part we had been waiting on arrived so we left Kuah for Bidan Island just 17nm north of Penang.
We arrived in Straits Quay Marina on Wednesday with the radar not working and a long list of jobs. Thats usual. I am happy to report that after taking the entire Furuno system to pieces today, David discovered it had re programmed it self to use a different raydome!! Just a setting!!!. Now its going again! 
We'll be in Penang for a few days to get some small maintenance jobs done and then move on south to Pankor. 
The Indonesian Cruising Permit Application is in the pipeline and we are expecting formal notification of our permission to cruise there soon. We will stop in Singapore if we can get a berth at One Degree 15 Marina for a few days before making our way to Nongsa Point, Indonesia, to clear into the country. The loose plan is to cruise down through the islands to Belitung before clearing out and heading through Sunda Straits to Cocos Keeling 
Watch this space for the next leg in the trip. We really are on the move now.