Indian ocean

At the Heart Of The Island Of Flores…

Published on 24 may 2018 at 0h00

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In the absence of any detailed information regarding possible stopovers for a boat on the north coast of the island of Flores, you need to study the few details that there are on the chart, and then… improvise a bit! I enjoy this though. On the screen of my chartplotter, I noticed a small bay with neighboring villages situated around a small river: Maurole and Mausembi. There isn’t a huge amount of shelter, just a little bit of coastline jutting out, but the weather was particularly good around the Sunda Islands. We had got into the habit of setting out at the end of the day, to get away from any coastal dangers before the sun went down. We would then sail safely, 2 or 3 miles out to sea, and then head into our planned anchorage at daylight, making the most of the light to avoid any problems. My original job in the Merchant Navy had taught me how to recuperate quickly from a disjointed night’s sleep between watches. To the north of Flores there was no swell and few waves. The sea was calm, the night starry, and the moon was in the sky. I have never seen more shooting stars than in the skies over the Sunda Islands…  

Just after breakfast we approached the bay. Clear blue zones indicated where the shallows were. We slalomed between the reefs and dropped anchor in the lee of a rocky outcrop which stuck out a few dozen meters from the shoreline. The children that were playing on the beach had stopped their games to watch this unknown boat that was mooring in their ...

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