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First month in Thailand

January 12, 2018

After close to four weeks in Thailand we now feel we have started to get to know the Thai feeling. Besides some working trips neither of us had any previous experience of the country. We knew this would be a dramatic change to the last year of less touristic countries, and yes it is! Swedish and Russian tourists crowd the beaches. Our detour from south was mainly made because Thailand is a good spot to have extensive teak work on the yacht.  After a week of several nice anchorages we made it to Boat Lagoon, one of three marinas east of Phuket. The entry to the marina gave some bad sleep though. Our 2.2 meter depth meant that entry could only be done near spring HW with very little or no margin. With a “pilot” we managed to cross the final bends and made it to the crowded marina the day before Christmas Eve.

We have contracted Interwood Work Marine and Mrs Nai to replace our 50+ sqm teak deck.  Reason for choosing Nai was a very good reputation for great project management and high quality and dependable planning. At some stages about 10 people were engaged in the removal of old teak and disassembly of deck gear. As staying onboard is impossible we have rented a small bungalow half an hour by car from the boat yard close to the Kathu Waterfall. Every day requires us to meet Mrs. Nai for problem solving. As always we also have a number of things besides the teak deck to fix.  One of our surprises in Thailand was the problem of language. Very few speak English beyond “no have”.  A huge change compared to Malaysia and even Indonesia. By now we have learnt the importance of keeping our temper, smile and relax. Things get sorted but it takes patience and creativity. Today we sorted out the corroded genoa tracks. The manufacturer could deliver but the lead time would be six weeks with an astronomical airfreight cost added and tricky customs delays to top it off. We spoke with a stainless steel workshop who will deliver a pair of stainless steel tracks for a fraction of the costs of original alu ones in ten days. Wow!  Our priority here (besides the deck and 100 other things on our todo list) is to make sure anything related to rigging is 100 % for the next 9000 nm, with south Africa promising some tougher weather than the “coconut milk run”.  Sailors considering a round the world sail sometimes forgets the amount of time and money needed to get the yacht in a safe shape for the trip.

From → Sailing Notes

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