15 February 2008

Galle, Sri Lanka

Med moored to floating pier
Galle Inner Harbor
Port of Galle
Sri Lanka

Shake Down, Sri Lanka Style! We made it! Ten days at sea and we made it to our unplanned destination of Galle, Sri Lanka.

We arrived around 10am, notified Don Windsor Agents of our arrival. They proceeded to contact the local navy to escort us to our new home for the next week, the New (used loosely) Floating Navy Dock. We had a Navy officer on board directing us to our location where we passed a military shack at the end of the jetty complete with machine gun, spot light and several barriers armed with circa 1940's machine guns and ready for anything.

"What's with the machine guns?" you might ask. We will go into this more in detail later. But the short answer is that Sri Lanka has been involved in a civil war since the mid 1980's.

Once secure, customs, our agent, and immigration all came aboard. The entire process of waiting and paperwork took over 4 hours. Lots of paperwork and we still don't have our official shore passes. This has been the first stop we have come to where there was an actual shake down of the boat. I think this is not to see if we have anything of danger on board, but instead to see if have anything they may want. Or as they put it "You have gift for me?"

We stuck to our guns somewhat and did not give out any of our precious booze. But we did part with a bunch of cold drinks. When customs came aboard they wanted to see all of our 'hard liquor'. They advised us to take out what we thought we would consume this week so they could seal the rest. The problem with this is that we have liquor all over the boat. In a larger boat you could have a designated area for storing the booze. But for us we stash it wherever we can. We gathered enough bottles together to make them happy. But before the official seal was placed on them, we were asked one last time (or so we thought) "You have gift for me?" A big "No" was our response. And so the booze is stored and sealed.

After most of our paperwork had been taken care of we heard our friends on 'Shiraz' radioing for the navy. Currently, they are still awaiting navy to escort them in.

'Team Sandpiper' is a bit tuckered out with all the sailing and watches we have endured the last ten days. So it should be an early night for us. But we plan to hit the town of Galle tomorrow , and many of the surrounding areas the next few days.

We hope all is well for everyone back home and you should hear from us in a few days.

One Love,
Amy and Tom


amy said...

what a bunch of shisters! Get out of there and go to a place that won't steal your booze.i

Chuck & Lynn/Lexxy said...

we have been following you with blogs and pix...so glad you are sharing this info for us as we are following...tell Sharaz I made a file of lots of their site info for a bunch of boats here in NZ and headed west in a while...we will need the info from Australia and points west where you have left...thanks
Lynn/Lexxy and Chuck on CYAN http://sailingcyan.blogspot.com/

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