21 March 2008

2008-Mar-21 Noon Position

Gulf of Aden
Indian Ocean
Offshore Yemen Coast

  • 82 nm last 24 hrs
  • 510 nm to Port of Aden, Yemen
  • 82 nm from Salalah, Oman
  • Winds SE 10 knots
  • Seas 0-1 feet
Back at sea and in route to the Port of Aden, Yemen. We left Oman yesterday after checking out with customs and immigration, clearing the Port of Salalah by noon.

Our whole time in Salalah was pretty much spent in our small rental car driving around with Steve and Rene (from SV Shiraz) exploring Oman. Steve and I spent one morning filling up the car's trunk with 8 diesel jugs and running back and forth from the gas station to the harbor in order to top off our boats' fuel tanks.

One cool thing about Oman is that they drive on the right side of the road which we have not seen for a long time. Even I was able to drive after 2 years. No problem!

We did find the gun market in town by accident as we were walking by. It was really cool as there where a bunch of Muslim men all on one street selling rifles. Some were really old Russian models, and a lot of 22's. One of the Muslim men had Amy trying out her Muslim woman cry of "Lalalalalalalal" which had all the old Muslim men chuckling.

Our last night in town we stopped at a Oman traditional restaurant recommended by Mohammed. We were shown to our own private room that was full of pillows we sat on. Then the waiter shut the door. Minutes later we were eating all kind of delicious food. Most of the restaurants seem to keep you separated if you show up with woman. There signs that say 'family area'. I thought this was for families with kids. But instead it is where you are segregated if you are eating with a women.

We were surprised to see a cruise ship in the morning we left. It disgorged bus loads of tourists going into town.

Upon clearing Salalah Harbor we were hoping to have NE winds that were forecasted to sail on. But as usual, we had winds from the SE, right in the direction we need to go. For now until we get up the Red Sea SV Shiraz and Sandpiper are now close 'buddy' boats and will be right next to each other until we clear the Yemen coast.

We tried sailing for 5 hours yesterday in the wrong direction. We even tacked, hoping we could make some distance by sail. All to no avail, we ended up motoring into the wind all night. This is the first time we can ever remember tacking since leaving San Francisco 2 years ago.... Crazy.

We are hoping for winds to sail. If not, then we will try to stop along the Yemen coast at Al Mukalla to get fuel because we are not sure if SV Shiraz can motor for 600 miles.

No traffic last 24 hours.

We did not have time in Oman to post any pictures of our stop there. But if you are interested , then go to Shiraz's site that is linked on this page to the right under 'Friends of Sandpiper'. They have updated their site and have lots of new pics of our stop.

Also, if you have not gotten an email from us. It is because we need to get closer up the Red Sea Sailmail antenna for a better connection.

More in 24
Tom and Amy

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