Indian Ocean Passage – 1990

Every so often I open one of my three hand written leather bound Log Books and read a little paragraph or chapter. After all the wonderful exciting and adventurous miles we sailed as a family on the lovely KANDARIK, I need to go back and read what I wrote over those years we spent as a family sailing around the world.

Some of the entries are so funny. I would like to share them with you.

Here is an entry about our passage across the vast Indian Ocean from the Chagos Archipelago to Mayotte in the Comoro Islands near Madagascar. I hope you enjoy it as much as I have in retrospect and when this all actually occurred.

We had a really fast passage, spinnaker up most of the time, and lovely weather the entire way. We kept writing in our log, “This perfect sailing weather just cannot last! We have never had such a beautiful spinnaker passage and cannot believe our luck.” “We are almost afraid to say anything, it is so lovely out here and are able to have the 3/4 oz Spinnaker up 24 hours a day” “Made our landfall in the middle of the night and should have hove to until daylight but we crept carefully in the pass and anchored in a little bay we saw on the chart.” “Next day was a fast and windy reach to check in at Dzaoudzi in Mayotte, with Charlie Bravo, the customs man!” That was November 11, 1990! We did not have GPS, Sat Nav, or radar or auto pilot in those days! All navigation was celestial and DR. BUT we had a great boat, and a mighty crew, me, my husband Andy, and are two children!!!

mayotteWhen we landed in Dzaoudzi it was November 11th and I shall never forget as we tied up our tender, the French Foreign Legion came marching down the only main street with all these uniformed mean looking soldiers singing in deep voices. They stopped at the little town square and put a wreath honoring their dead fellow Legionnaires. If you have ever seen this you will understand why my sweet daughter, who was 13 on that day, leaned over and whispered into my ear, “Mom, how can they fight in those tight pants?’ Only a teenager would notice that! And believe me they all wore TIGHT PANTS!!!!!

A little aside to this passage, the day we left Chagos we were in company with a tiny 30 foot boat, OCEAN MUSIC, from Port Elizabeth, South Africa. We left together and realized it was a Friday once we cleared Chagos. We continued on hoping the Gods would not object, but OCEAN MUSIC turned back and was afraid to depart on a Friday. That little boat had five men, a wife of one of the men, and a new born baby! Crowded to say the least. They left 24 hours after we did the next day. BUT, they had squally weather, calms, hit a huge log and damaged the rudder, got caught in a fishing net, ran out of propane and fuel, and were almost out of fresh water before they got back to Port Elizabeth, and they were superstitious about leaving on a Friday with us!!!