Salalah Part 10 the finale
been happening in the last week of May.
have been preparing the Fai Tira for shipping and actually loading her.
Yes! all the boats are now loaded and ready to head off to their destination. The
loading took a couple of days longer than forecast but the loadmaster and crew
were so careful with our treasured possessions, (boats) that they were
all loaded safely, the only damage was to a couple of wind instruments on the
top of the masts. (not on Fai Tira)
I had been given a new BWR flag
by Tony one of the organizers back in Cochin. As we had sent such a lot
of time here in Salalah and particularly the Oasis club I thought it
would be appropriate to present them with the flag signed by all twenty crews
to add to the many other flags hanging from the ceiling. As you can see
it says the “The Last BWR” this is because the company that organized
the rally has now been dissolved. So it was lucky for John and myself to choose
the 2009-11 rally or we would have probably not been able to “live our
dream” other than go independent. The possibility of completing a circumnavigation
via the two canals in the future will not be possible until the world governments
stem or stop piracy in the Indian Ocean. The only alternative to sail around
the world, would be to transit via South Africa.
The Last Supper
The Oasis club organized a farewell
BBQ for us. All the crews still in the Salalah turned up as well as a few
friends we had met during our stay which included Tony and Mark from the RAFO.
Here is me and Chrissie cuddling
up together, whilst Mark and Allden were doing the same!!!!!! Note the
Brian was falling asleep
listening to the sounds of his beer swilling around pretending it was the
The Ship Arrives
The day came when the ship
docked. A few of us rushed around to watch. I later met with her
skipper, a massive Ukrainian man called Igor. He was Jolly most of the time but
did have his fits of temper when things were quiet going to plan. One of
these was went I took him around to see our boats in the harbour and he discovered
they were NOT power boats but Sailing boats with MASTS. Yet another miss communication
note I have not named the ship or date of departure because of security
Fai Tira first to load.
Fai Tira was to be the first
boat loaded. We were told to be at the side of the ship for 7am. I
got my crew to arrive on FT at 6am. I had Larry and Allden helping me and
after raising the anchor we proceeded around to the ship. We were there
five minutes early and decided to tie up alongside as there was no sign of life
on board. BIG mistake as the harbour was quite busy and the swell produced
by the massive ships and tugs moving about meant we had to hold FT away from
the side of the ship to stop the mast crashing against the ships side as we
rocked violently. I decided to move FT a way and standoff.
Eventually the Igor the skipper came
on the radio and started asking questions about the height of our mast. It
transpired that Igor had completed the loading plan based on power boats as
stated before, and he had FT down to be stored under the crane.
We he was from the U Crane after
He said I had to take the mast
down. NO WAY I said so we went into negotiation with him and eventually
decided to load Jackabel in FT’s spot and FT to take their position.
Stress Stress Stress!!. So we returned to the anchorage and slept.
So the next four days saw all
twenty boats being loaded on the ship.
The first boat to be loaded was
Bali Blue followed by Blue Magic. Here is Larry and myself on the ship
after loading Jackabel.
Here is Blue Magic being lifted
a 55ft Discovery owned by Mark and Chrisie
One of the smallest boats on the
rally is Aspen an Island Packet owned by Steve and Maria from Aspen Colorado.
Here she is dwarfed by a 65ft Oyster owned by Pete and Virginia.
Sol Maria one of the remaining
two cats on the rally were loaded late on the second day.
Then it was Fai Tira’s
Her long keel made it different to
load from all the others. The strops are the same length and as you can see
this meant FT was nose down when lifted.
Do I look worried?????
FT nearly down on deck.
The ship’s crew and load master Roy did a fantastic job.
We had a Rib in support of the
loading driven by Brian and later by myself. We helped with the manoeuvring
of the boats and recovered the crews after lifting. Here is Ian watching
Lucy Alice being lifted. He doesn’t look worried. Ian thanks for letting
me stay on Lucy Alice overnight and a great breakfast.
Here is Larry helping with Angel
V one of the last boats to be loaded. Eventually all the boats were on
board and strapped down.
After three months of being
stuck in Oman the end was in sight so we could now head off to the Hilton Hotel
and book our flights.
Only a few of us left at the
end. A small group of those decided to have one last meal and drink at
the Oasis. They presented us with a small gift to commemorate our stay.
about the poor picture quality.
Thanks to all the Oasis staff.
We returned via the ship and
stowed our contraband on Larry’s boat hoping he would get arrested when
we get to our destination.
I am sitting in an air conditioned
hotel room, guest of Larry with whom is spent the night (thanks mate) and
refecting on the last three months. Quite
an emotional feeling.
I head off tonight for Muskat,
on the overnight bus with David and Susan, and then fly onto our destination
tomorrow the 1st of June 2011.
Bye for now and thanks to all
the Omani people who have put up with us for so long.