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Thursday, November 29, 2007

November 28, 2007-Delivery to Phuket

wingssail image-judy jensen

A cruise is slower. We'd stop along the way, wait for a weather window, smell some roses.

A passage, on the other hand, is a long trip at sea away from land. You have to go non-stop because there are no stops along the way on a passage. That is the definition of a passage.

This wasn't a cruise, and it wasn't a passage; it was a delivery. We delivered the boat to Phuket for the King's Cup Regatta next week. Just get the boat there; that is all that counts.

We buddy boated with Full Metal Jacket with captain George and his crew. There were lots of ships and we stayed close together while sailing through the Straits of Malacca, but we had no major problems and none with any ships, only minor mechanical issues.

It wasn't a bad trip, but it wasn't a joy ride either. We had squals for the first 24 hours out of Singapore. Then we had calms, and the last 24 hours it was a good sail, and we arrived at Yacht Haven Marina after 4 and a half days.

wingssail image-fredrick roswold

So now we have the boat in Thailand, finally, and we are getting the boat ready to race here.

That is the defintion of a successful delivery.

Click here for more images or click here to go to Pierre's personal page and view his photos.

Fred & Judy, SV Wings, Phuket Thailand

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Thursday, November 22, 2007

Nov 23, 2007-Topping Off the Tanks (testing email update)

We've just returned from the fuel dock and we bought 142 litres of diesel. 'The last fill up was in Brunei in May 2006. Since then I calculated that we'd used 139 litres so my calculation is a bit off.
The other reason for this posting is to test the email update. We won't have internet connection for our passage north to Phuket, and if we want to update the log we'll have to do it with email, and no photos.
We don't expect anything newsworthy from this upcoming delivery, but it there is anything, or if we just feel like writing, we'll send an update.

Fred & Judy, SV Wings, Singapore

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Saturday, November 17, 2007

November 18, 2007-Ready to go

wingssail image-fredrick roswold
Ready to Go

We've converted Wings back to cruising mode and we are ready to set sail.

Fred & Judy, SV Wings, Singapore

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November 17, 2007-Last Singapore Race

For several months November 17 has stood as a milestone for us: the last Singapore race on our schedule, at least for this year, maybe ever. Yesterday we sailed it. So now our Singapore racing chapter has closed and we will be taking the boat to Phuket Thailand next week and we don’t have a firm plan to return to Singapore. We’ll miss Singapore and Raffles and certainly the racing here. It’s been good and yesterday was a fitting end to it.

We had a good little sail, typical for these round the cans races at Raffles: eight short legs, three spinnaker runs, fast action, and lots of drill.

We won the start and it was good not to be OCS which has happened too often this year. Even at that it was close and we had to burn some speed in the last 10 seconds which caused some outcry from Roo who had their hands full trying to stay clear. Tantrum, the First 44.7 was well back at the start and going slow and we looked good as we settled into the beat, going left as we have found to be the standard routine here, and working out to weather. But Tantrum tacked to the right a third of the way up the beat and one by one the other boats did too. At first we didn’t think they looked all that good over there but we decided to cover so we flopped, the last boat to go that way. Then a big righty came in and Tantrum started to look better. I could see that they would cross. Meanwhile Roo went back left and got some good breeze on that side. It left us to play the middle; not good. We rounded the top mark second and just ahead of third place Roo, but we had a good set and jibed inside of Tantum which put us back in the lead. Roo did a jibe set after us, the right call, and with their giant asym kite and scorched down the run, sailing right over the top of us. Damn!

But coming into the bottom mark Roo had a halyard problem and couldn’t set the jib so we got by them again. Now Roo was out and Tantrum was well behind. At this point the wind had shifted so that there was only one way to go around the course for the remaining legs, no passing lanes, and we held on to win easily.

The wind was nice, had some shifts which changed the tactical situation a bit, (also good practice), that was good. There was a bit too much yelling on the boat I have to admit which took some of the fun out of it, particularly for the fordeck, and we have to work on that. I think the pressure was on everyone, but they did well and it’s clear that we’ve come a long way since September last year. And it was nice to win the last race, and even if there were only four boats, and most of all, I think they way we handled the boat shows we are ready for King’s Cup.

No photos from the race, but while we are out here sailing in balmy conditions look what is happening back home in Puget Sound:

Ross Fotheringham image
Puget Sound Ferry

Ross Fotheringham of Everett caught this shot and others of the Mukilteo ferry battling waves in Puget Sound during a windy October day. He subsequently gave his permission for to display the photos, along with a link to his website, here .

I think we don't miss this very much.

Fred & Judy, SV Wings, Singapore

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Wednesday, November 14, 2007

November 12, 2007-Reclamation Bay

wingssail image-fredrick roswold
Wings at anchor in Reclamation Bay

We are at anchor for the first time in nearly two years.

It feels great.

On Friday morning we departed Raffles Marina on a bit of a shakedown cruise. We wanted to test all of Wings’ systems away from the dock so we could be better assured that things will go well when we sail north to Phuket later this month. It all worked two years ago but when you don’t use it you lose it, as they say, and Wings has been strictly a day-sailor since we arrived in Singapore in 2006.

First thing we wanted to do is run the motor. So when we left the marina instead of sailing, we motored. Hard motoring, on the autopilot. The motor worked, and the charging system, but the autopilot failed. We put on the spare. It worked. So we have to buy another autopilot drive unit to carry as a spare. Check.

Then we anchored in Reclamation Bay (or Bob’s Bay, as some locals call it, named after one the first guys here who dared to go in and anchor). The anchoring system works fine.

We got out the chairs (thanks Andy) and had a drink. The freezer still makes ice cubes. Check.

wingssail image-fredrick roswold
Hey, this is nice!

The next day we checked out the dive bag. The zipper was frozen. Replace the zip. Dive bag fixed. We dove on the boat and cleaned the bottom. Easy, it looked good already. We watched the battery performance. Humm? That’s not so good. The seven year old batteries don’t have much life; another thing to put on the list. We set the automatic anchor light. It works fine.

We launched the dingy and the Mercury started on one pull; another win.

Then some friends from Raffles came into the bay and dropped the hook. They invited us over for drinks, and then a barbeque on the beach. This is fun, just like cruising.

So we spent three days and nights at Reclamation Bay. It was very pleasant. When you are at anchor, even in a hot and humid place like Singapore, it feels good: the boat moves a little instead of the motionless feeling you get at the dock. It’s cool. Whatever wind there is cools you better at anchor as you swing to the wind, which can flow unobstructed. It’s quiet; there are no marina sounds. You can jump in for a swim if you want.

I think we forgot how good this is.

Click here, and go to Novemeber 2007 to see more photos from our shakedown cruise.

Fred & Judy, SV Wings, Singapore

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Monday, November 05, 2007

November 6, 2007-See You Later Bangkok

wingssail image-fredrick roswold
Living aboard in Singapore

The jolly crew of Wings has moved out of Bangkok and back aboard. Yes, that’s right; we’re full time cruisers living aboard our boat in Singapore now. Our work assignments in Bangkok are over for the time being and we’ve completed our move from Bangkok to Singapore. The apartment life in Bangkok was fun and we love Bangkok, but we are happy to be home. One good piece of luck was that we managed to sell all the household goods we bought for the apartment, (except some large pieces of art which got shipped to an unsuspecting family member, surprise!) Still we had 10 suitcases full of stuff and getting THAT aboard Wings was a challenge, but its all stowed now and we are shipshape and ready to go (plus, we have a big donation for the Salvation Army).

We’ll now spend a few weeks working on the boat and keeping the job search ticking over, then we’ll be off to Phuket Island, Thailand in late November.

Other than a few things we know we’ll do, our plans for the months ahead are not completely definite: we are looking for jobs and who knows if something will develop there, but we do know that we are going to sail in the King’s Cup sailing regatta in December, and our Granddaughter Candace is coming to visit over Christmas and New Year’s. During that time Wings will be based in Phuket.

After that, who knows? Maybe there will be more working in our future. If not, then certainly there will be more cruising. The historic ports along the Straits of Mallaca will be interesting and we want to visit them all. Plus the cruising around Phuket is supposed to be stunning, and we will have some fun doing that. Then there are the runs down to Langkawi for duty free supplies.

So now that we have some cruising back in the immediate future you get a cruising story from us a bit more often. And we’d love to hear from you, so please write to us and tell us about everything from home, we miss you all.
wingssail image-fredrick roswold
What's Cooking?

Fred & Judy, SV Wings, Singapore

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