Day 163, Year 4 First Day in the Water
Date: Friday, April 3, 2009
Weather: Sunny Day with Late Afternoon Threats of Rain
Location: Boat Lagoon Marina, Phuket Island

This was our first full day in the water and it was a crazy, busy day. In the early morning I stayed in the apartment and worked on getting photos ready to upload to the website and at the same time, get photos ready to give to Oh. Mark went to the boat to organize the work crews. Oh’s crew was back to do some finishing work in the cockpit and Marine Electronics were there to work on our inverter/transformer problems that developed when we moved from land to water. At 9:30 am Mark and I headed to Ao Chalong to check out of Thailand. Unfortunately, we forgot that we were told that the rental jeep was absolutely empty of fuel and we left Boat Lagoon without getting fuel. We realized this just after leaving, but the fuel stations here are far apart and we ran out of gas before we reached a station. Fortunately, an older Thai gentleman on a motorbike saw our problem and came to drive Mark to the gas station and back. He wanted no money for his services, but I insisted on given him a token fee. We were only delayed about 20 minutes, so we still arrived in Ao Chalong well before noon to do the check-out process. That went smoothly and afterwards we had lunch with Gerry and Donna of Scot Free II. They are planning on leaving Ao Chalong tomorrow or Sunday and heading for Phi Phi Le where they will wait for us to arrive late on Tuesday afternoon.

Getting out of here by Tuesday morning seems more challenging that we had thought, but that is still our goal. The cockpit enclosure is still not on the boat and won’t be until Monday. The dodger will be put on tomorrow, but the side curtains just aren’t ready. We did get the inverter/transformer issue worked out today . . . we think. Oh’s crew will finish their work tomorrow, so if all goes as planned we should make our Tuesday morning deadline. We are hoping to move out of the apartment tomorrow morning, but it is possible that we won’t make that deadline. We could still be here until the next day just because it is so difficult to move things back to Windbird with work crews still there.

The greatest thing about today was our end-of-the-day celebration with Oh and his crew. We went up to a small café and had a great ‘happy hour’ celebration. We have grown so fond of Oh and his crew. They have done an incredible job and have taught us so much. Oh turned 34 in January, Luck (or Lux as we learned this evening) is the youngest member of team, Pong is actually a little older than Oh and has been painting longer than Oh, and Lok (Lot, as we learned tonight) is the newest member of the team. This is just one of Oh’s six teams. I don’t know if the other teams are as good, but this team ROCKS. Oh, Luck, and Pong are Buddhist but Lot is Muslim. We learned tonight that Oh’s partner, Beei, is also Muslim. She doesn’t always wear a head covering, but she is devout. Oh explained that there is always a bit of tension between the Buddhist way and the Muslim way, but he and Beei make a great couple and will work things out. The thing we are most impressed with is Oh’s Buddhist thinking about a job well done. Having a beautiful product is the most important thing for him. And we think we have one his most beautiful products. Windbird looks great and is ready to sail south.

Day 164, Year 4 Happy Anniversary to Justin and Jo
Day 162, Year 4 Back in the Water . . . 888