We had arranged to re-fuel on Monday 30th at 9.30. The booking had been made
to ensure that we were able to get fuel. Without a booking, no fuel will be
dispensed. We started to prepare the boat to leave the mooring at 8.30am.
This is not an easy feat. First we have to take off the lines attaching us
to the dock then move forward, gradually taking up the slack on the two
forward lines, attached to the piles. The boat then has to be manoeuvred
towards one of the piles, to assist us to drop the line on top of it and
then, move towards the other pile and drop that line on top. Having
completed this task, we then wait until a fishing boat clears through the
lock so that we may move in.
Exiting from the lock, we make our way to the fuel dock and raft up to a
small work boat which itself is also rafted to another small work boat.
Jeannius, which has been anchored in Fannie bay waiting for the chemical
treatment to do its stuff, rafts onto us and Mike goes ashore to meet Paul,
one of the rally controllers, to be driven to the customs office in order to
obtain the necessary document for him to purchase the fuel without paying
While Mike is away from his boat, we re-fuel Tucanon and assist Jeannius to
re-fuel. Once Mike has returned, we untie Jeannius from our boat and she
moves off towards the lock leaving us free to detach ourselves from the work
boat and make way to the lock.
As we already know the ropes, Jeannius prefers for us to enter first and
Mike and Jean prepare their boat to enter the marina via the lock.
By skilful handling of the boat, we are able to pick up using boat hooks,
the lines from on top of the piles, tying them off onto the port and the
starboard bow cleats and mooring stern to the dock.
The whole episode took 3 hours but this was good compared to Basia's
experience. They were due to re-fuel after us and be back to catch the last
lock at 11.45. After that time, with the tide receding, the water was too
low to access the lock. Basia needed 500 litres of diesel but after they had
received only 100 litres, the fuel pump was dry. Although a tanker arrived
quite swiftly, there was no hope that they would be able to return to the
marina that day, so they spent the night on the fuel dock and didn't get
back into the marina until 8.15 the next morning.
There was a reception for WARC participants at the Dinah Yacht club, near
Tipperary marina on Monday evening, followed by a prize giving. Tucanon had
come second on adjusted time, for leg 13, being beaten by Destiny by a mere
Tuesday morning we returned again to Dinah Yacht club, this time to complete
the formalities of checking out of the country then went again into town to
purchase fresh fruit and vegetables, the last of the provisioning for the
passage to Bali.
The sailmaker returned the repaired parasailor Tuesday afternoon and also
brought the new sail bag which unfortunately didn't fit so it had to be
taken away to be altered. It was returned next morning and was in place
before we had to check out of the lock and make our way to the start line
for leg 14 to Bali.
Only twelve boats set off at the prescribed hour of noon on the 1st
September. One boat had left the previous day, two boats which hadn't been
with us since arriving in Mackay, were going to make passage directly to
Cocos Keeling. The rest of the fleet were leaving Darwin on Thursday or
We sailed for the first 26 hours using the main sail and genoa except for
around half an hour during the afternoon of the first day when we tried to
use the parasailor but the wind moved 40º and it was not viable. From 5pm to
8pm on the second day we did use the parasailor but with the apparent wind
at 5knots we were doing no more than 2.7knots so switched on the engines.
During my watch in the afternoon of the second day, two birds flew past. The
following bird was flying much lower than the other and was making a great
deal of noise. I hope it was OK. It is not unusual for a bird to stop on one
of the boats to take a rest, before recommencing its journey. Sometimes they
leave a number of messages behind.
Around 7am on Friday, the 3rd day at sea, the rising sun had stained 7/8 of
the circumference of the sky, pink and a shining, yellow moon, progressing
from a half to a quarter, was still bright in the blue sky. I tried to take
a photograph but couldn't get the two subjects together.
Mid morning on Friday, Moe caught a fish for supper which was curried and we
ate with relish.
One night, we were entertained by dolphins, to a magnificent display,
enhanced by the phosphorescence. Mid afternoon on the 4th and 5th of
September, dozens of dolphin approached the port hull and bow, swimming from
Monday morning as we sailed through Indonesian water, one of the WARC boats
was being followed by an open motor boat containing four people. Naturally
they were anxious, so two other WARC boats, sailing a few miles off, went to
their assistance. Fortunately, before the exercise had hardly commenced, the
"threatening" boat turned off and made way to a nearby island.