Alan and Jean sharing our cruising news with friends, family.

20 July 2015 | Rabi Island Fiji
29 June 2015 | Suva Fiji
18 December 2013 | Auckland
05 December 2013 | Auckland
27 October 2013 | Vavau Tonga
12 September 2013 | Samoa
24 July 2013 | Moorea, Tahiti
19 July 2013 | Papeete
19 June 2013 | Nuka Hiva
02 June 2013 | Pacific Ocean
29 May 2013 | Pacific Ocean
24 May 2013 | Eastern Pacific Ocean
19 May 2013 | Western Pacific Ocean
16 May 2013 | Western Pacific Ocean
13 May 2013 | Isla Isabella
06 May 2013 | Isla Isabella
08 April 2013 | Shelter Bay marina, Colon.
28 March 2013 | Belize
27 March 2013 | Belize
03 March 2013 | Panamarina, Panama

Singapore Seduction

30 October 2007 | Singapore
Oneo 15 Marina
Sentosa Island
31 October 2007

Singapore Seduction.

Walking into Vivo city, the newest shopping centre in Singapore after 12 weeks in Indonesia was almost a physical shock, certainly culture shock. We recovered very quickly and the seduction began, we have been enjoying all that Singapore has to offer in the last 10 days or so. Shopping, sight seeing, swimming in the lovely pool here as well as the necessary boat work have kept us busy.

We took several days to get here from Kumai, our trip down the river and out across Kumai bay was uneventful thank goodness, no nets to trip us this time. A two day sail took us to Serutu Island , 2 nights there then on to Kentar Island and across the equator. We left Serutu in rain, thunder and wind. Sails up, slipping along nicely on the smooth sea, we thought great we can give the motor a rest. An hour later the rain and thunder had disappeared over the horizon accompanied by the wind. We motor sailed the rest of the way to Kentar Island, crossing the equator on the way. The equator arrived at 2 in the morning so we couldn't see the orange line that MJ from Island Sonata vowed was there! Maybe the line is black just like in the atlas. Alan had been saving some Waikato beer for the occasion so he poured some in for Neptune to taste. I sacrificed some of my night watch chocolate biscuit, only one packet left so was only a small bit. As we were motoring we circled around over the line to get the photos in the right place, the 2 ships near us must have wondered about those circling nav lights.

At Kentar the anchor was just settled when another lot of thunder, lightening and rain assaulted us. We are getting used to this now, the squalls blow over in a short time, but still a relief when the thunder becomes a distant rumble. An equator party was held on Brother Wind , they kindly shared their fishing good fortune with us all, barbequed Spanish mackerel for dinner. Through out Indonesia all the yachts had been disappointed about the lack of fish and many, ourselves included, had stopped towing a lure. Jo and Giles had broken the drought and caught several fish. Encouraged by their good fortune, the next day we put out a lure, nothing. Giles and Jo a mile in front pulled in another good fish!!

A day motor in hot still air from Kentar to Pangkil Island in Selat Riau. and Singapore was only 2 days away. In the distance on Bintam Is we could see lights of a big city the biggest city in Indonesia we had seen. The boat traffic was becoming more modern looking, a few fast ferries buzzing among the Indonesian Islands and across to Singapore. Our last night in Indonesia was spent at Ngoonsa point looking across the Singapore straight out to the high rises of Singapore looming out of the smog. We watched the constant line of big ships moving east and west hoping we would find a gap long enough the next day to complete our journey to Singapore.

We woke up a bit late, the tide was already running quickly, no time for a cup of tea we didn't want to have to contend with counter currents and ships in one of the busiest shipping lanes in the world. The Indonesian side of the straight was quiet just 3 huge anchored ships to avoid. Singapore straight is divided into shipping lanes going east and west with some designated crossing lanes. We arrived at the crossing lane opposite the customs anchorage looked left then right, we felt like an ant crossing a motor way. A huge ship was coming from our port side in the east going lane and there was a gap in the west lane, we decided to wait and cross immediately behind the east going ship and still have time to cross the west lane before the 2 ships we now saw in the distance got too close. That worked fine but we still had to content with a small tug which delayed us a little and the big west going ships got closer and closer. I was so nervous I forgot to get the camera out! With much relief we turned into the lane that took us around to the customs clearance area. We motored around looking for a friendly anchoring depth, keeping clear of the big freighters also waiting for customs clearance. The anchor was just down when the grey customs boat came and hovered along side, no coming on board here, passports and ships papers transferred between boats in a plastic bag. 10 mins later and we were on our way to the Marina just a mile away.

The day wasn't finished , after settling into the marina, (no time for a swim the pool looked so enticing too.) we had to go into Singapore to complete our port clearance, we then caught up with Jim Pasco for a welcome to Singapore drink, a nice meal at his club then back to the boat. The long day was finished sitting in the cockpit with a bottle of cold NZ wine to celebrate a safe and memorable journey from Auckland to Singapore. The little bit of Singapore we had seen on our first day was enough to know we were going to enjoy our stay.

When we arrived the marina was quite empty looking, being a new marina all the berths are yet to fill with local boats so there is room for visitors. We were one of the first rally boats to arrive now there are about 20 of us enjoying the pool, the free shuttle bus to Vivo just 8 mins away and the delights of Singapore just minutes away on the slick fast moving MRT (underground). Last night a group of us went to the night zoo and the night before we went to China town. Mention a place to visit and a group forms, time agreed and off we go. Places to buy boat bits, good deals for cameras, electronics, and places to eat are all discussed around the marina docks or in the air conditioned laundry/computer room. King George Avenue was a find that all the men go into a trance about when mentioned. Hardware, tools, canvas, bolts, pipes etc etc, shop after shop so full that the goods spill out onto the pavement, a blokes area. All this in an area called Lavender and with a neighboring hotel called Fragrance. New arrivals, some are still dragging themselves away from Indonesia, are given the tips learnt. They too are quickly seduced by the delights of Singapore.

We are now in the transition period between being settled and thinking about moving on. Charts are being studied the questions are changing from "Where are you going today?" to "When are you leaving?" and "Where are you going to first?"

Still a few more days to enjoy the delights of Singapore, for some the seduction is complete and they want to stay or at the very least come back next year.
Vessel Name: Tuatara
Vessel Make/Model: Alan Wright 51
Hailing Port: Opua NZ
Crew: Alan and Jean Ward

Sailing in the Pacific

Who: Alan and Jean Ward
Port: Opua NZ