4 October: (Happy Birthday Callum!!) Running ahead of another storm yesterday, we sought refuge late that night off Lingga island, but it was so rolly and uncomfortable that we left it at daybreak and moved around the point to a much calmer spot. Today was declared a total rest day – just caught up on sleep and then had dinner over on Lothlorien.
Ali has been begging to have a daysail on Lothlorien – anything to get away from her horrible mean parents – so Lex delivered her over there just before we left early this morning. We stopped on the Equator at 10am, and jumped in the calm waters for a little while before moving on. We’re old hands now, so crossing the Equator’s not the excuse for a major celebration anymore! (Not to mention that we are out of alcohol and have nothing to celebrate with...) Being alone on the boat was celebration enough anyway (sorry Ali).
We anchored at Mesenak Island, a beautiful anchorage, and an absolutely picture postcard beach, a long sweep of white sand embracing azure water overhung by tall bendy palms. All that was missing was the waiter carrying the coconut drinks with those tiny umbrellas… It was really lovely and best of all almost deserted. Fishermen worked around it and the bay had several wooden, space craft-looking fish traps in it, but otherwise no one was there. We snorkelled and walked on the beach, fished unsuccessfully (were a bit shocked to see that the fish the local guys caught were a third of the size of the one Ali caught and released as too small) and caught up on sleep.
I finally made some bread in our oven! Seeing I have a history of cooking a Bedourie oven full of terrific (ifIsaysomyself) bread every day, it’s been a pending challenge to bake bread in our oven. The stove top is fine, but the oven… After the oven took two hours to cook some chicken wings, and THREE to bake a cheesecake recently, I had given up hope and informed Lex that yes, we would indeed have to spend a couple of thousand cowrie shells on a new oven. This one is about 25 years old, after all. Then I sat down and read the one page ‘manual’ on it, had a search for a part it mentioned that I couldn’t find, found it, and lo and behold, it works! Well, kind of. Anyway, the bread was fine. Which for someone with a gluten intolerance, was not truly good news but at least it will broaden the scope of on board dining!