Monday, July 12, 2010

Trade Winds

Securely anchored in the lagoon of Direction Island, there is not much
we can do at first but enjoy the lack of rolling and the full night
sleep. Having arrived on a Sunday, we have had to wait until Monday to
clear with the authorities. During that time, we are not allowed to go
ashore or even to visit other boats (there are three of them anchored
here). However, even if we wanted to, the trade winds kept blowing
relentlessly at 25/35 knots, making it extremely uncomfortable to go to
Home Island, 2 miles away but upwind. With those winds, the waters of
the lagoon are very choppy and we might as well go to town in our
bathing suits.
This monday, police showed up around 9 in the morning and we were able
to clear and get all the informations that we needed to organize our
stay. The wind is still blowing strong, but the forecast call for a drop
in strength tuesday and wednesday, which suits us just fine.
Today afternoon, we went ashore on Direction island, had a long walk up
and down this very tiny island and then enjoy a swim in waters which are
crystal clear and transparent for the first time since I arrived in
Tomorrow, we will go to Home island for shopping, enquire about what is
available in West island, and possibly find a restaurant to have a meal
ashore. Home island is settled by about 500 malays who live here
permanently. They are all muslims, so no alcohol on the island which
suits me just fin.
West island is home to some 250 aussies expatriate, and it is where the
airport and the various resorts are located. We will try and do that on
If all goes well, we will set sail on thursday, bound for Port Mathurin,
capital of the island of Rodriguez. My weatherman tells me that thursday
thru saturday should be fine but to expect up to 32 knots of wind on
sunday. As long as we are sailing downwind, we can easily take up to 35
knots. This should be a fast passage. I expect 13 days or less.

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