Monday 22 December 2008
By the time our extra anchor chain was delivered it was too late to leave – it’s a good idea to arrive at a new anchorage before 4 pm, so that you can see any lurking coral bommies or rocks under the water. Later than that, or too early in the morning, and it’s impossible to see into the water against the angle of the sun. We left Rebak Marina this morning at first light. The two other boats meeting us at Koh Kraden had already left – Lothlorien, with Jim Al and Sam Grierson on board, and Gwendolyn, an Australian boat from Fremantle, with Brad, Gwen, daughter Tatiana and son Dare, and their guests, Jim’s son Paul and partner Caroline.
Koh Bulon Le was Malaika’s first stop, a tiny island with several resorts. Not a great anchorage – there was quite a strong swell for the first few hours – but it was the right distance away to get us anchored in time and also en route for the Christmas Day destination. We had dinner at an open air restaurant at Pansands resort on the beach front. By resort, don’t think flash, luxury villa-style accommodation. Lots of the resorts on these little islands are very basic and home-grown, adequate and airy but with minimal comforts. The food at the restaurant was good, but we were ripped off thoroughly with the bill, as we realised later! Moral: don’t have a couple of rums before you go ashore where you have NO facility with the language and haven’t got the money worked out yet!! They also had the biggest hungriest mosquitoes we’ve seen anywhere. We’re pretty sure there’s no malaria here. (Yes we forgot the mozzie spray…)
To add insult to injury when we returned to the dinghy after dinner, someone had untied our rope from the anchor. If we’d stayed another hour we might have lost our dinghy to the rising tide. So Koh Bulon Le and the Pansands Resort hold few fond memories for us.