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Larkabout 2009 The Larkin's World "Tantrum" tour 2008/2009.

Singapore to Penang

SINGAPORE | Sunday, 25 January 2009 | Views [419]

Our second go at the Malacca Straits. The water is a poisonous green and the whole coast is heavily polluted. You can’t even see Sumatra. It is very busy, but we are wobbling up the outside lane, far enough over not to be bothered by the big ships and just inside enough not to get all tangled up with the millions and millions ok I’m exaggerating but not by much of fishermen. (We learnt our lesson after a fairly stressful night sailing down to Singapore). Not much sleep (“spleep?”) the first night so around dawn after the second we pulled over off Port Dickson and had a nap before going in to a marina there for fuel. Much cheaper than Singapore. (Oh really.)
Wednesday night was the Night of the Living Fishermen and I’m not going there without therapy so we took a break on Thursday and anchored at an attractive little island called Pulau Pangkor and had a quick swim while trying not to get any of the water on us.
And thus to Penang. We pulled in late Friday night and went ashore and got pissed at the Marina bar while watching the local Salsa Club go large. Saturday we wobbled all over town seeing the clearing-in dudes and had Pizza Hut for dinner. What? It was only because we couldn’t find McDonalds.
Yesterday Jack and I jumped the buses and did all the Christmas shopping and are feeling very smug today. I’m feeling particularly and disgustingly smug as I made a Christmas cake in Singapore. Mo and Ian arrive here tomorrow and we join them at their hotel for the nights of the 24th, 25th and 26th and will leave Penang for Langkawi on the 28th. We have (yet) another contact from Glen here. Bruce has spoken to Ronnie on the phone and we are hoping to catch up with him before Christmas. He sounds like another fascinating chap – an ex diamond dealer who is an authority on Chinese opera and deities.
The only other news and I suppose it’s quite big is that we have decided to go around the bottom of Africa instead of through the Red Sea. We really don’t want to miss the opportunity to go to Chagos and also to South America and as things stand we can’t really afford to go to Europe anyway…(It also means that if things get really grim we can sail back to Australia from the Indian Ocean).
We are all really happy on “Tantrum”. A few glitches here and there but she’s been good to us and comfortable. We still haven’t changed the name on the starboard side so it still reads Wirlinga. We’ve taken to telling people that it is Aboriginal for tantrum.
Reluctant though he’s been to focus hard, Jack has been coping really well with the whole distance education thing. He got lucky early as all his work for the year was due in Australia by the 28th November, so he finished up in Bali and has been on holiday ever since. We got his report the other day through Mo and Ian and he got As and Bs, one C (my fault – we had missed part of a unit) and an E for Art because we didn’t do it. No prejudice there, just a lack of time to start the units when we first got going. He misses his friends of course and gets very bored while we are under way – but hey so do we all. We’ve got plenty of power when we get going thanks to big prop shaft generator so he can do some gaming and watching of movies. Speaking of which, we seem to have got through the pirated DVD thing relatively unscathed – they all appear to work with the notable exception of the new James Bond movie which has appalling sound quality and also switches to Russian half way through. I still have no idea of the plot, but it was very exciting.
 We settled in to the routine about 2 days before we got to Singapore, finally. It has taken a while to get the groove back, but it is very good and we like it a lot. Jack is just brilliant – he’s getting really confident and starting to soak the whole experience up more (when he’s not bitching about the boredom) and is now as tall as me. We’ll be bringing back an unrecognisable young man.
We miss you all and send lots of love and Merry Christmases and good wishes for the New Year and I hope it won’t be as long between letters.
I have attached some photos – I’m not sure as I write this that I’m going to be able to caption them so if they arrive sans captions you’ll just have to work it out amongst yourselves. They should be in chronological order.
XXXXXOOOOO Sal and Bruce and Jack

Tags: singapore penang langkawi malacca straits

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