Local fishermen scoot past in their elegant craft.
Departing from Lombok at 06.30 a.m. for our 60 mile passage to South
Bali we had a fast start with 1 to 1½ knots of current with us and
averaging 7 knots. This slowed a little as the current dropped off but we
continued at 6+ knots. Getting through the reef was relatively easy not least
because this anchor handling tug had not been so lucky and now clearly marks the
reef for newcomers.
We arrived at 15.30 a.m. to be greeted by the Yacht
Club mooring boys who led us in. Gryphon
II is now happily secure between fore and aft mooring buoys outside the Royal
Bali Yacht Club. Calm and peaceful after a long sail from Lombok, the mooring
will give us a quiet night as there are no mosques in the vicinity for the call
to prayer at 04.00 hours.
Stopping here has enabled us to get our gas cylinders
filled, this has been a problem in Indonesia so far as the fittings here are
different from the French, US and Kiwi range of cylinders that we have on
board and we really didn't want to have to buy yet more and were down to our
last 2. However, Bali has come up trumps and we now have a complement of full
Mr Mande (you name it and he will sort it) came out to our
boat and has had all our diesel cans and petrol cans (for the outboard) filled
and brought out to us. This was a much appreciated service as hauling
diesel cans around in the dinghy is not a joyful task. Equally appreciated
was Ketut, driver and dive master, picking me up at 06.30 in the morning to
get me to Denpasar Air Port for a flight to Singapore and back to renew my
visa. I now have another 30 days which will take me through to the end of the
rally. I also bought lots of books in Singapore, including an English
translation of the Koran, there is plenty of choice at reasonable
prices so it was a good trip. Ketut was there waiting on my return, he is Hindu
and had quite a bit to say about Balinese culture and the Bali bombings. The
Balinese are welcoming people, "open arms and open hearts to all", he was
confounded by the bombings. Chris and Peter will get
their Social Visa extensions in North Bali via the rally organisers, mine was
complicated because I flew home just before the start of the rally.
Serangan is an interesting village with unusual buildings,
a small canal running through and a swathe of mangroves leading into the sea. On
the low walls various seaweed is laid out drying in the sun and a variety
of whole fish is smoked over buckets; it smells wonderful, not like kippers but
lighter and sweeter. Supper tonight will include smoked fish and some
giant prawns bought in Lombok.