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Aug 1, 2009 Sat
We worked on the boat today cleaning it. Jason did the bottom and I worked on the inside. After we finished I made some lunch and then we went diving. It was an amazing dive. It was the lava came down in 1988 and the coral was just pristine. The colors were of the rainbow and the formations were so different and so many. We saw a huge 4 foot trivali too he kept coming around to check us out. There were so many different colors of trumpet fish; I did not realize how big or colorful they could be!! It was overall the best coral dive I have ever done and they said the diving would not be that great here.
Aug 2, 2009 Sun
We readied the boat this morning and left at noon for Ambon. I made some Thai soup with the lemon grass I acquired on our tour of the island. It turned out better than the restaurants that I have been to in the good old USA!! I was so proud of my soup. For dinner I made green curry with fish which also turned out great but how can it not with such great fish!! We have about 4 boats around us sailing and we passed 3 already. We should arrive tomorrow morning by 9am.
Aug 3, 2009 Mon
We arrived this morning. We both slept poorly last night so we were tired. We had to anchor and back into the dock. They wanted all the boats to dock on the fishing Warf and moved all the local boats so that they could fit us all. They have tents up and places for us to shower. It all is a big affair us being here. Jason and I walked to town to get some money since we were unable to change money in Banda, they would not take our creased dollars. We first had to walk to town and then through town. We passed a grocery store and stopped. It was a nice size one but only had dried goods, but lots of stuff we needed. We were so excited to see sun quick even if it was only orange. We stopped at a woman selling stuff on the street and bought 4 items (5 of each). One looked like a pofergie on steroids but tasted like one, another was wrapped in banana leaves and was rice with meat in the center, and the third was a fried eggroll looking thing but it had a chili sticking out of each end. It was good. The lady liked us so gave us 2 free deserts to try and they were delicious too. We stopped to eat them since it was raining really hard. We continued on our quest and finally found the grocery store. I have no idea how long we were walking but it was a long time. After we successfully had our pockets filled with money we continued to wander around. We found a department store and since my 2 new shirts were stolen bought me 3 new short sleeve shirts. It is really hard here not to be able to wear tank tops. That is most of my wardrobe. Jason bought a local shirt that was really cool on him. We had a mango juice drink and wandered this huge mall. There was a movie theatre in it as well, but it was all foreign films. They were selling movies, the ones that have 8 movies on one DVD. The quality was really bad. We ended up wandering over to the outdoor market where they were selling fruits and veggies on the waterfront. They also were selling fish. It was large and cool. We came to a dead end and decided to take our chances on the interior alleys. It is amazing that the motorbikes ride back here it is really dangerous to walk around here. I have never seen so many cars and so much traffic not on a highway. It is really dirty here as well which is sad. We happened to walk by a family that was grilling bananas and of course we had to try one. They were absolutely fabulous. So sweet already and they served them with a cameral sauce. We finally made it back to the main road. We just kept looking at all the food venders and restaurants. The food looked so good. Finally Jason broke down and stopped to eat. We had a feast for $1 (chicken, rice, and local salads). We finally arrived back by 5pm just in time for Sail Indonesia to be handing out our free tee-shirts and hats. After we put our purchases away we went to the restaurant right by where we are docked and had a beer or two with Halley. Then we came back to the boat and crashed!
Aug 4, 2009 Tues
We went around town with Cool Bananas and few other boaters today. We were looking for some boating supplies and ended up at the mall again. It was a fun day.
Aug 5, 2009 Wed
We went to the beach today with Hally. We rented a bus that took us. It was a 1.5 hour drive because it was all the way on the other side of the island. It was a beautiful drive and we were able to see a lot of the island this way. The beach was nice but Jason got his kite caught in a tree. The locals were friendly and ran over to help us get it out of the tree as soon as they saw what happened. They were all hanging around while Jason blew up his kite and laid out his lines. They watched as we launched it and so they were quick to help. It was a very sad day for the Biz. We had a beer on the beach before heading back to the boat. It was pretty late by the time we arrived back. We ate leftover curry before heading over to the meeting about Sail Bunekin. They were going to talk about it as well as the race to Bitung and all the activites going on once we arrive. It was a good meeting but too many questions. Afterwards there was beer. We hung out until late chatting with Cool Bananas and then we went to the disco that was in our little harbor area. There was no one really there but a few cruisers and we all decided to go to the local disco. We took motorbikes. There was no one at the disco so we sat outside drinking beer and waiting until 2:30 when supposedly it would be mobbed. No one came and we decided to leave. We took a rickshaw back and the other two who stayed a few minutes after us raced by us on motorbikes. Our poor rickshaw walked us up th e hill. Over all it was a fun night and we did get to hang out with some locals too.
Aug 6, 2009 Thurs
Today we prepared to leave tomorrow. Jason got fuel and borrowed the neighbors jerry jubs in order to get it more quickly. They could use a hose to your boat but they had no meter to figure out how much you were using so you had to use jerry jugs. We just about filled the tanks. We had to run into town to get money to pay for the fuel and gasoline as well. Jason picked up a few things at the market too one of them bread which was super good, it was egg bread. We are super low on flour I was able to get 3 cups from our friends on Hally but it is only enough to make some scones which I plan to make first day out. I rested on and off during the day for the journey tomorrow. I also cleaned the whole boat on the inside, the bathrooms needed a good scrubbing again. We got our laundry back as well which we think we have all of it this time. They had the big dinner for us this evening so at 6 pm the bus was picking us up. Jason just barely made it back from taping his kite back together. While he was fixing his kite a couple of guys helped him the entire time. When he was finished his sunglasses were missing so he went to one of the guys who were military police and told him. He went around looking for them and thank God found them. A guy who pulled into the place he was working on his motorbike put them in his motorbike and that is where they found them. We waited after arriving at the 6pm departure time an hour before getting onto the busses to take us to where the big dinner gala was to be held. It was a big deal and all the officials were going to be there including the president of Indonesia (king). We were able to meet most of them including the king. They had some speeches and lots of dance shows as well as bands play. It was all local music and was fantastic. The food was amazing they had several different buffet stations set up with different kinds of food as well as a desert one. Everything was so delicious. We gorged ourselves on one of the meat dishes since it has been so long since we have had red meat. After all the food and entertainment they had dancing which was also very fun. We learned the local dances and then danced some American music as well. The night went until midnight and finally we all went home. It was a late night considering we are leaving in the morning and it is a race. We had a police escort there and back and it was much like being a diplomat being whisked through the streets with all traffic being stopped for you.
Aug 7, 2009 Fri
We got up this morning at 8am and pulled the boat away from the dock and then lifted the dingy onto deck in preparation for the start of the race which begins at 10am. We shot the gun on the first countdown which we did not realize was the first of three. But, we were off sailing in light winds but making 5 knots. We of course were passed by the big boats and the catamarans eventually. Our sail was uneventful for the most part since we did not fish.
Aug 8, 2009 Sat
We have had great winds today and are averaging 6 knots. The seas are light so I made scones today. I made mango ones and they turned out fantastic. Jason is in Heaven and has already eaten half of them! We had fish for lunch too and it was also yummy. Mostly just reading today and chatting about the book Economic Hitman.
Aug 8, 2009 Sat
Todayís sail was very nice. We had great winds and were making 6-7 knots most of the day. The seas have been small so it has been a really comfortable sail. My night shift is a little stressful tonight since there are all these floating fishing platforms out here that we need to avoid. Luckilythey all have at least a light on them. We had hamburgerís for dinner and it was fantastic to have some meat. Jason put some blue cheese in the middle the last of it in fact. Jason almost finished the scones today as well. That would be 10 in 2 days! I cleaned the inside of the boat today as well, at least all the floors and the kitchen. The boat always seems to need straightening up after a passage too!
Aug 9, 2009 Sun
Todayís sail was very nice. We had great winds and were making 6-7 knots most of the day. The seas have been small so it has been a really comfortable sail. My night shift is a little stressful tonight since there are all these floating fishing platforms out here that we need to avoid. Luckily they all have at least a light on them. We had hamburgers for dinner and it was fantastic to have some meat. Jason put some blue cheese in the middle the last of it in fact. Jason almost finished the scones today as well. That would be 10 in 2 days! I cleaned the inside of the boat today as well, at least all the floors and the kitchen. The boat always seems to need straightening up after a passage too!
Aug 10, 2009 Mon
We arrived at the finish line at midnight and then we had to enter the harbor at night. It was a crazy entrance. We had about 15 boats going out around us, big boats and some did not have any lights on. I used a spotlight to see all the boats around. It worked really well and we radioed to those behind us letting them know all the obstacles. We anchored around 1am and crashed. We slept really late and went into town after that. We took a little bus. Town was cute. We walked all around.
Aug 11, 2009 Tues
We went into town again today. We went to the internet cafť which was on the second floor above the grocery store and past the Texas chicken. We could not make phone calls though or get our computer online which was really frustrating. After messing around online for almost 2 hours we went to the grocery store to pick up some beers and flour. We are so excited to have beer. We have been out since Australia. I also was out of flour so I cannot wait to bake some scones and cookies. The store was fairly small and did not have a cold section which was disappointing. I guess we need to go into Manado for that. They are going to have bus service soon going to and from there every day. Jason is really looking forward to going there for the seafood Festival. They are also setting up a few restaurants at the dock we are staying at some local and then one that has hamburgers, hotdogs, steak and fries. They are also going to have a band all day starting on the 14th. We went to Cool Bananas for happy hour tonight. Dave invited us to join him and Lydia for dinner. They were going to Passau Tua which is a night market that has rows and rows of venders with tables behind where they cook. They all have ice with tons of fish on top and you just choose what you want to eat and they cook it for you and put it in their particular sauce. We just walked around to different ones and picked out food and then went to the fried bananas one and ate there. We bought some bananas of course to go with our dinner and some beers. It was a great night. I plan on coming down here every night!! After dinner the kids that were hanging out with us took us over to the fair. It was late around 11pm and it was closing down. The band had just finished for the night. It was really cool though, lots of vendors selling wares. We all took ojaks (motorbikes) back. It was so fun.
Aug 12, 2009 Wed
We went to the zoo today. It was kind of depressing. We saw some cool stuff but the cages were so small for the bigger monkeys. We saw the tiny monkeys that are the smallest in the world and have the biggest eyes. They are nocturnal. They also had all the birds that are on the island. We saw cobras and a constrictor snake. Jason held it. We saw tons of little turtles and of course the monkeys. It was pretty fun. It was pretty funny though, because we walked with a group of people and we passed the zoo and walked up and down 2 hills before we realized it!! We walked back while the rest jumped in a taxi. There was not enough room for us so we decided to walk. We went to Passau Tua tonight with Lydia, Dave and Elle which was really fun. I of course had the squid again which was beyond perfect!!
Aug 13, 2009 Thurs
We went to the National park on a nature tour to see the Orangutans. It was a good hike around and we saw lots of monkeys!! I got lots of good pictures. Wet to Paussa Tua again tonight and it was again a great evening!
Aug 14, 2009 Fri
Jason had to go into Manado for the Guinness Book of World Record dive meeting. I stayed back since both of us did not need to go to it. I cleaned the boat and rested my back after yesterdays hike because tonight we are having the big dinner and it should be a big party. They are having a band and also a dj. The dinner was pretty good and the music was fun. Jason and I got up on stage and danced with the locals. It was really just a big party and everyone was having so much fun. After the dinner and dancing was finished we moved down to where they were having the band play. We danced well into the wee hours of the morning. Of course, we were all on stage by the end of the night. It was a really fun night.
Aug 15, 2009 Sat
I was very sick today throwing up and a fever. My stomach was cramping in a way that it never had before!! I was miserable. Jason just hung out with me most of the day until he went in for the captains meeting regarding the race to manado.
Aug 16, 2009 Sun
Laurel is still very sick with fever and stomach cramping. Jason went in at 3am to go to Manado for the big world record dive. Anne went in Laurelís place.
Aug 17, 2009 Mon
Went into Manado today. We made the 9am bus but it did not leave until almost 10am. It was an hour ride across. We did not stop at any of the sights which I know lots of other buses did. The bus dropped us off right at the mall and that was it. We walked down to the convention center hoping to find some information about the Seafood Festival. We never did find it or any good information about it. We saw some cool dancing though. We walked to the mall and since I still am not feeling that great I had an A and W Root beer and it was so delicious I had another!! The float was fantastic and they even had cold mugs!! After our root beer we went to the Fresh Market which is a grocery store. I am very disappointed in myself for not purchasing any cheese here because it turns out that it would be my most convenient time to provision for our trip. After that we just walked around town and then back to the mall and walked around it for a while before the bus took us back to town. Lydia asked us to come to Passau with here tonight and I for one and very excited to go eat there again!! Being sick was the pits and I missed out on everything fun!!! At Passau Tua I had red snapper instead of the squid this time. It was really yummy. We also bought some vegetables that were in a chili peanut sauce that was also delicious. We had a fun time. Anne, Dave, Elle, and Lydia came as well as Cool Bananas but they sat at a different table than us. We took Ojaks (motorbikes) there and we all crammed into a van on the way back. I much prefer the ojaks; they are so fun especially at night! There were lots of marines in town today from NZ and the USA. The Americans were hanging out at the Texas Chicken place!!
Aug 18, 2009 Tues
Took showers and tried to get onto internet before we left to sail around the corner. We decided not to do the race and just sail and spend the night part way to Manado so that our sail would not be so rigorous. We had strong winds so our sail went pretty fast. We anchored off in a great little bay. I only wish we would have left earlier so that we could have dove or did some snorkeling in this bay, but alas we are always late. We anchored by 5pm and were invited over to Sea Rose for drinks. It is a catamaran. We picked up Helly on the way over. It was a very nice evening. I brought over some hummus I made really fast and everyone seemed to love it, which surprised me considering I made it in 15 minutes. We had wonderful conversation and finally left at 9pm. We have to get up really early tomorrow and still need to cook dinner. I made the squid in a garlic sauce and it turned out fantastic. I only wish I was as hungry as Jason. I did not sleep a wink this night and tomorrow is going to be a long day!
Aug 19, 2009 Wed
We woke up at 5:30 pulled up the anchor and were sailing up to Manado by 6am. We arrived in Wori Bay around 11:45 and we are all supposed to organize ourselves behind the big sailboat 2 by 2 at noon so we decided to just hang out rather than anchor. There is no wind anyway so it was not hard to just hover. They kept pushing back the time and now it appears that 1:30 is the magic time. So, while we hung out here we put on some good tunes and I did yoga and than danced a little to kill the time. I was tired of reading. We had a 2 hour sail still to get to Manado so we started to watch a movie while we motored in order. We did not finish it but it was a little relaxing. It started to rain a little which was refreshing so I hung out on deck enjoying it. When we arrived to Manado you could see the Us George Washington. It is huge and it had all of its planes on deck!! It also had 3 warships with it. There were tons of warships on the horizon from all over the world that were going to make the sail pass in front of us so basically doing a procession in front of us as well. It was all very cool to see. It started raining really hard with lightning and thunder though, which was a little disappointing but by the time we did our sail pass of the President it had cleared up. There were planes in formation that went by, fighter jets, and some others I could not identify. Overall it was a very inconvenient thing for us to do but it was also very interesting which kind of balanced it out. After the sail pass Jason and I turned around to start heading back to the anchorage we left from this morning. We should get there around midnight. This way we will have the current with us it is that way from 6pm to midnight. We had it against us this morning the whole way!! Talk about frustrating. But, we had a nice motor back. There was no wind the entire way. Luckily the Government is giving us money for the diesel we used to get there and back to Bitung. We want to get back early so we can get our fuel and water before everyone gets back. Our water maker is still not working so we have to haul jugs of it to the boat. That is the worst thing to break on our boat!! It is such a necessity. We arrived at our anchorage before midnight and were in bed by midnight.
Aug 20, 2009 Thurs
Sailing back to Bitung today. The winds have been changing constantly. But, it is mostly on the nose. Right now it is 30 knots on the nose so we are motoring. Hopefully we should arrive by midday.
Aug 21, 2009 Fri
Aug 22, 2009 Sat
Today we did our laundry all day in the showers on shore. We did about 4 loads in our cooler. For dinner we invited Serenity to come with us to Passau tua. It was a fun night. My favorite place was closed but we ended up getting calamari at a different restaurant one we had not been to. Everyone else go the fresh water craw dads. They were huge and very good. We also had the vegetables in the spicy peanut sauce which was amazing as well. We were out pretty late and had a great time.
Aug 23, 2009 Sun
I did Pilates this morning. Lolita went out to leave this morning but ended up turning around and coming back. The seas were over 10 feet and the winds were 35 on the nose (south). Not very good conditions they were going 6 knots but only making 1.5 with the waves and current. Jason and I were getting some water and diesel today and were invited to the Mayerís home for dinner with a few other cruisers. It was a great dinner. They thanked us for being there and told us we are part of their heart. The Rendang was the best I have ever eaten and I stuffed myself!!! It was a really fun night.
Aug 24, 2009 Mon
Annie came over to the boat today and asked if she could come on board now to sail with us. Things are now working out on the other boat with her and Lars and they are also staying in Bitung for at least another week or so. We told her it would be ok. She is going to drop off some clothes tomorrow and move on the 26th when we leave to head to Kimoto. We took showers today which was fantastic and got the boat ready to sail. Jason also did some kite boarding. Liaison came out to meet me in their dingy to watch Jason and take some pictures. Jason was so excited he went over there afterwards to pick them up! We changed and went to meet Anny and Lydia at the pool hall to have a beer before Passua Tua for dinner. Billy off of Liaison, Elle, and Dave met us for dinner. Dinner was excellent I had my usual calamari from my favorite place and J had fish. The rest of the table had calamari 4 different ways and we all shared. It was a great last Passau tua dinner. We all went over to the pool hall to play pool. The guys from Barbara Anne and Sail maker were at the pool hall as well and it was a super fun night. I of course, sucked at pool, but at least I averaged 3 balls in each game!! Billy was the best player and you almost were guaranteed a win if you were his partner. Jason was pretty darn good too.
Aug 25, 2009 Tues
Jason and I had a late morning for our anniversary. We lay in bed and watched our travel videos that we have taken. We saw the whales that were swimming with our boat for over half a day. I got some amazing footage of that and I canít wait until I can edit it!! We also watched our wedding video and honeymoon video. We were cracking up at our honeymoon video at how little we knew of sailing. We were hilarious. We have really come a long way since then!!! After the video, Annie stopped by to drop off come cloths. Jason was getting our last bits of water while she was organizing her stuff. I did some of my Pilates while I waited for Jason to return and finish filling the tanks. She was going to do some provisioning for us while we hang out at the resort for the day. We took the dingy there which was pretty far. I ended up having a great massage there. It was also so nice to swim in a fresh water pool!!! We had an early dinner there before heading back to the Biz. Lydia and Annie were there when we arrived and we all had a beer together. They left and J and I busted out the Champaign to toast 6 years blissful years of marriage. We just sat up chatting under the stars!
Aug 26, 2009 Wed
We left this morning to try to go east to Wakatobi. Cool Bananas, Liaison, and Halley left early this morning to head that way. A few other boats did as well. We had a late start and pulled up anchor at 9am. We were out there until 6pm trying to make way and at that time we had only made it 10 miles out. There was too much wind and current against us. The Biz just does not do well with the winds on the nose. We ultimately realized that doing 1.5 knots in the right direction with the motors on at full throttle is not going to work. First of all we would run out of fuel and second we hate motoring. We decided to turn around and take the western route and head straight to Kimoto. We sailed straight through the night and arrived in Bunakin Island in the morning around 10am.
Aug 27, 2009 Thurs
We stopped in Bunakin Island to do some snorkeling and it was really amazing!! We saw tons of fish big and small, lobsters, and turtles. The coral was really pretty too. We left one person to man the boat while the other two went snorkeling since we could not anchor. While I was manning the boat I did my Pilates! After we finished snorkeling we sailed over to Manado and did some shopping. We bought tons of bakery goods that were so delicious!! We also purchased some meat and bacon. We had pizza hut for dinner since Annie was craving it, which I was not crazy about doing but was surprised at how good it was. It was really the salad bar that made the dinner!! They made their salads with cooked veggies here so it was nice to have a good old American salad! We leave tomorrow to continue on our journey to Kimoto.
Aug 28, 2009 Fri
Jason woke up early and went into Manado to pick up a new belt for the motor since we are running it so much and most likely will be with there There is no wind so we will have to motor for part of the way whenever we cannot sail. He also changed out the alternator since it was putting out too many amps and he was worried it would damage our starter motor. I was able to do my pilates this morning under way since the wind was so light and the water was like glass. We had a nice sail part of the day and motor part of the day. This evening we are back to sailing although we are making only 2 knots Velocity made good but going 6 knots speed over ground.
Aug 29, 2009 Sat
Jason changed the blower this morning and we motor sailed most of the day. In the evening the current was so strong against us that we were making negative way so we turned off the motor and just floated backwards!
Aug 30, 2009 Sun
We polished all the stainless on the boat this morning. We are still motoring as well which sucks. We are going through lots of diesel we are going to have to make a stop to pick up some more along the way. This current is killing us. We are making water, which we cannot drink but is still good enough to shower with so we have been using our solar shower until we can get our new water maker part! It is not the best situation, but it saves our drinking water. Thank God it is only temporary. I canít wait until we get our new water maker part in Bali!
Aug 31, 2009 Mon
We were able to sail part of the day and motor part of the day and saw a bunch of dolphins. I have been cooking everyday and baking as much as possible. I made beer bread today and some curry.