Friday, 10 August 2012

Alor Tours

Hi everyone,
After the welcome ceremonies on Tuesday we attended a dinner arranged by the local organisers.  The food and entertainment were good but the event was "dry" which many of the yachties found a little disappointing despite respecting the local religions.  At the end of a long day a cold beer would have gone down well.  Never mind.

On Wednesday we joined a tour which took us to the Kalabahi museum, the markets and the traditional village Takpala.  All were fun and interesting.  The village provided a spectacular welcome and we had lunch in one of the bamboo/grass houses which have several levels.

Market goods
Takpala ceremony
Takpala three-level house
 On Thursday we went on a second tour which took us to an old burial site (which now has a mosque on the site) and a snorkelling beach on the NW coast of Alor.  The burial site has a large cairn of stones under which 4000 (hunted) heads are reputed to be buried.

The snorkelling site was quite shallow but it was good to swim in clean water for the first time since Lizard Island last year.

While at Kalabahi we spent some time with Steve and Anne on Recluse, Wayne and Alison on Blue Heeler, and Brian and Gail on Dol Selene.  Together we attempted to work out the tides for Selat Pantar for our departure.  The calculations involve establishing Lunar Transits which is a first for most of us.  All tides are based on lunar position, but few require one to use the moon's position directly.

Tomorrow (Friday) we intend to depart at dawn to start heading west.

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