Wednesday, 1 August 2012


Refugee Boats rafted together awaiting destruction by Australian Customs
We have been in Cocos Keeling Islands, anchored at the quarantine anchorage at Direction island, for nearly a week. We moved in much closer to the jetty where there is less chop and its much more comfortable. Its extremely easy on the eye here with crystal clear fluorescent aqua through to navy blue water. There is always some breeze to keep it cool and the beach is white sand with coconut palms and very nice shelters, tables and chairs and a BBQ. There is a quite large, and curious, resident population of Black Tip Reef Sharks, however they don't bother you in the water.

Over on Home Island, about 15 minuits away by dingy, there is a large Moslem population, remnant of the old Clunies Ross plantation workers, There is a Doctor, Nurses, School, housing for around 500 residents, jetty, Council and workshops, Museum, Centerlink agency, Post Office, Internet Cafe and a Supermarket. The opening times are erratic. We bought calling cards at the Post Office and can now make calls from the Shelter here on Direction Island. 
Narelle and Don

Our HF radio mail service  is hopeless. All the yachts are complaining that the propagation is so bad you either cant connect or can only connect at such a slow speed you'll be kicked off for over use. Thats just to get a GRIB file. We have ordered an Iridium Sat Phone to take over the mail process in areas where the propagation is poor. 
Now we have 7 yachts here, two have left for Rodriguez and two new ones have arrived.
We have been flat out partying! Its been very social, exhausting and great fun. Don Gardiner, an old lost friend, is deputy principal at the district school here, and one of the teachers, Narelle Cahill is a great friend of one of my old school mates. Lots of old times to catch up on. We had Cyclone, Moe's power boat and ferry, rafted up most of the weekend and indulged in a drinking and eating frenzy with them and their friends. We did also go snorkeling and to the Art On the Beach exhibition which was in the water on the beach front. Hard to explain but you'll get the drift from the photos! All constructed with found objects by families and individuals from the Cocos Keeling islands

This week we have the inevitable maintenance jobs to attend to, new wind vane instrument so we know wind direction and speed with more certainty than a look around. It died coming through Indonesia. One of those up the mast jobs. When the new Sat Phone arrives there will be that to set up too. Ive some sewing jobs building up. Repairs.
Thats an update from us.

Sandy and Emma with some of the floating art.

More Photos from Cocos Keeliing