one Indonesian anchorage to another

CR and KN Williams
Mon 15 Aug 2011 03:58
08.04S 122.57E


Monday 15th August, 2011

Left Lembata 2 days ago for a snug little anchorage 5 miles away. All was well until at 3 pm when the dreaded ‘head in chart plotter’ disease struck and so did we (again!). No damage this time except to my pride and we had to wait until 9pm to float off. The entire fleet had descended upon us and nearly submerged us with advice. We were of course unbelievably grateful, particularly as they guided us into the anchorage in pitch darkness.

We’d put a stern kedge out and obviously buoyed it and left it behind. When we returned next morning in the dinghy (I wanted to take the boat but Clare wouldn’t let me) we found it but of course couldn’t pull it up. The current and the wind got up so we left it behind with 25m of rather nice rope (I’d failed to bring a knife with me so couldn’t even save the rope which, when attached to the fender, took it straight to the bottom!)

Relaxed next day and oozed gratitude to the fleet and bought a lobster from a fisherman (Oddly enough, nearly the same price as in Billingsgate). Clare also bought a flapping fish from him but then got cold feet about ciguatera and threw it away. Off now to another idyllic anchorage with hopefully an eye on the sea this time.
Wind now 0.5kts astern, but occasionally gusts up to 2.8kts, the sea would make the Serpentine look choppy.


Not a jolly 24 hours. The charts are all inaccurate round here and we failed to find the middle of the entrance to the channel through the reef.  Only about a metre from the edge of the channel when we went aground (slowly luckily) but enough. I have since discovered that most other people have lists of waypoints from previous cruisers for a lot of the anchorages which I hope will help.

One of the chaps who came to help had gone aground in Alor a few days previously so was particularly helpful and sympathetic. He said his wife had refused to sit in the boat on its side and had sat in the dinghy.

The boats in the bay had drinks at sundown on the small sand cay and we were told lots of stories of when other people had gone aground. There are a few experienced cruisers around who never get into any trouble but always carry 3 spare anchors.

Anyway, had a nice day yesterday and went swimming and inspected the rudder which is only slightly scratched.

On another subject; Doxycycline (malaria prophylaxis) is nasty stuff. I took some while still lounging in bed and haven’t been so sick for years. When I read the information sheet it said that it causes oesophageal irritation/erosion and must be taken upright and with at least a tumbler of water to wash it down. No more major problems but it still makes me feel a bit pukey even with omeprazole first.

Hope tonight’s anchorage will be easy to find.