Wednesday, July 29, 2015

Staying in Lovina's Kalibukbuk

Villa Cinta of Lovina

We have been in Villa Cinta for 2 and a half weeks.  We found the small house through AirBNB.  The house is a perfect size, and as well, a good location.  Unfortunately, it has not been cleaned and maintained professionally.  That doesn't really keep us from being comfortable and feeling right at home.  In fact, where else could we have such fine neighbors as these (see below)?  There are many dogs and many roosters.  The latter are very vocal from 1am to 6am.

In addition, we have some kind of family living above the ceiling.  Our housekeeper says they are rats, but I think they are too loud when they bounce around.  Maybe cats?  I do hear some meowing from time to time.

We have a very nice housekeeper, Ibu Shinta who looks after three different houses in the Lovina area for the same owner.  I think it is safe to say that the owner, Ibu Cipta is trying to stretch her budget and that is why Ibu Shinta really does not have time to do deep cleaning.

Below is Ibu Shinta with her 15 y. o. daughter, Sonia and her 8 y. o. son Brian.  They came over on the holiday Kuningan to give blessings in the small shrine for Villa Cinta.  The last photo is a flower growing as a prolific vine on the garden wall.  It is Passionflower viniflora.  We ahve to get a cutting of this for Villa Cengkeh.

Saturday, July 18, 2015

We are back in Lovina for a month


We have rented a house for a month in the Balinese village of Kalibukbuk.  It is right in a local community with a lot of families, chicken and pigs.  Most importantly, it is only a 15 minute motorbike ride to either the plot for our new house or to the central commercial area.  The Buda Bakery is on the way up the hill to our place. More on it later.


To get around, we rented a motorbike.  Wh​ile we fit right in with thousands of Balinese folk, I don't have the same skills (yet).  When I turned into the small road up to our new plot, I hit a sandy patch as I was braking and managed to turn over.  Ouch!  One of our to become new neighbors saw the whole thing and rushed to help.  He took the motorbike on down the hill, then insisted that he should give first aid.  His name is Komang, a farmer (grows pigs and cloves) and a mechanic.  He cleaned the scrapes and put on antiseptic.  After a drink of water we proceed to the plot, but neither Susan nor I were very comfortable.  We returned home, showered and Ibu Sinta treated the wounds again.  We shall survive, but will need more time to get our motorbike skills developed.

Saturday, July 4, 2015

Move to Nightcliff for SV Villa G Haulout

We are back on SV Villa G now after 3 nights away.  Last Wednesday afternoon we temporarily moved off of SV Villa G to an AirBNB "Tropical Garden Cottage" in Nightcliff.  That's a suburb of Darwin about 15 minutes drive away.

We have been using AirBNB when possible and have been very pleased.  Last year we stayed with a family also in Nightcliff, but their apartment was not available for this haulout.  The cottage was located in the backyard surrounded by tropical trees and flowers.  While the facility was quite simple, it was more than sufficient and the owner, Tess McPeake was very nice and had all in good order.  She originally moved to Darwin in the late sixties as a kid and has been elsewhere in Australia a great deal of the time.  Tess was a fountain of knowledge about Darwin and things Australian.

We hauled SV Vila G here at the Cullen Bay Marina Slipway which is operated by Jeff and Kaye Dunn.  It is so easy to work on your boat here and they have staff who are able to help as needed.

In general we found all well with SV Villa G.  There were a few barnacles around some of the thru-hull fittings, but generally pretty clean.  I had dove on here about every 2 months and scrape accumulated growth while we were up in Indonesia.  

Underwater surfaces are painted with Copper Coat composed of 60% copper microbeads suspended in epoxy.  This was put on SV Villa G 3 years ago in Phuket.  By and large it is holding up pretty well; however, around the bronze thru-hull fittings and the places we have dinged on coral there is a need to scrap a bit and cover with conventional anti-foul paint.

After Spencer powerwashed everything, he sanded off the prop and re-coated it in Prop Speed, a miracle product that keeps the marine life off the prop.  Our propeller is bronze so barnacles and all manner of marina love to make home there.  We have found that Prop Speed does a great job, even it is an ugly yellow green color. I don't know what it is chemically, but the yellow stuff is a primer coat and then the protective material is a slippery clear coating.  

Susan spent the best part of two days using a scouring pad and rubbing the Copper Coat finish.  This removes some of the epoxy and exposes more copper to inhibit growth. We also sanded the grounding plate for the HF radio (seen to the right) and replaced some of the sacrificial zinc anodes.

An essential reason for hauling out of the water was to replace the main depth sounder, seen above with special black anti-foul paint.  This is a new super-dupper Raymaine unit that should be able to detail the sea bottom and even see fish!

The black thing above is a small paddle-wheel that transmits a signal to the instruments to tell us how fast we are going through the water.  We have had it onboard, but never installed it.  Previously we had a fancy ultrasound speed reader, but it only worked about 15 minutes, so while out of the water we put this old fashion device back in and we can confirm now that it is working.

A bow-thruster. SV Villa G has a long keel and is difficult to turn when standing still or going slowly; however, this small prop in the bow allows us to turn on a dime.  It is electrical and does a great job.  It is all covered in red anti-foul paint here.  This is also a good picture to see the greenish blue color the copper in the main bottom coating.