Peder travelled to Thailand in January 2010

- for a short visit onboard Empire

 

 

First the plan was that I should fly to Thailand all on my own to visit Eirik, Heidi and Dad, but then mum got cold feet for letting my fly alone. The trip was cancelled. But then mum found that she could fly together with me. Then we travelled to Thailand.

 

 

The plane was 1½ hour delayed when it landed at Phuket airport, because the plane had to change a flat tire in Oslo before it could take off.

Heidi and Eirik met me and mum at Phuket airport.

Dad did as much work as he could on Empire before I arrived, because she was on the hard in Boat Lagoon marina. After first finding mum’s bus, we drove to Boat Lagoon marinas. When we arrived there, I hurried out of the car to give Dad a BIG hug. He hardly managed to come down the ladder before I hug him.

It was very hot in Thailand when I arrived. When I flew from Norway it was cold and a lot of snow. In Thailand it was warmer than summertime in Norway.

 

We were lucky that there was a nice swimming pool in the marina that we could use, Eirik, Heidi, Dad and me. In the pool I showed Dad that I had been training on swimming under water. Actually I had become pretty good at it.

Later I surprised Nat on the American yacht Bahati. He thought I was not coming to Thailand – but so I did. I met Bahati first time when I sailed with Empire across the Pacific Ocean when I was 5 years old. I did not quiet recognise Nat, but that did not matter. Soon we got to know each other again. Nat’s wife Betsy was also at the Phuket airport when Heidi and Eirik picked me up, but Nat did not know.

 

One of the days I helped Dad with painting antifouling on Empire. Now it will not grow any sea grass on Empire’s hull for many years. When we were done with the antifouling and done with polishing the rest of Empire’s hull and she looked almost as new the crane came to lift her in to the water. The crane lifted Empire up in the air and drove her to the waterfront. Then the crane lowered her into the dirty water – and Empire became dirty again.

Since it was low tide Empire had to stay where she was put in the water until midnight. Then it was high tide and Heidi, Dad and I could drive Empire to a berth. Some of the marina crew helped us – but it was not much help. They put Empire in the wrong spot. But in the end everything was good.

 

 

The next day I got my fishing net full of sand when I put it in the water beside Empire. Empire was so far down in the mud that the net got full of sand as soon as I put it just a little bit down in the water. Dad did not like that Empire was far down in the mud – but finally we got another berth for Empire with more water.

 

Saturday Nat and Heidi and Eirik and Dad and I drove sightseeing in a car. When we came almost to the top of the mountain we found the elephants. Nat and I rode on one elephant and Heidi and Eirik and Dad rode on another. In the beginning I sat on a bench on the back of the elephant, but later I sat on the elephant’s neck. That was cool.

Afterwards the elephant tried to blow in my ear and I was allowed to sit on the elephant’s knee. That was really fun.

 

Later we drove to the top of the mountain. It was a Budda on the top of the mountain. Many people were building it. They had been building the Budda for 7 years – and probably they have to build for many more years to finish the building of the Budda. A Budda is a sort of a Good which many people believe in, but no one had told me about Budda back in Norway.


Then we drove to the beach called Kata Noi. I learned to surf a little when I visited Empire in Australia. At Kata Noi I learned a bit more of surfing.

 

Another day when we had lunch at a small restaurant at another beach, a man came by. He said he knew Empire. His name was Sjur and he sailed with the Norwegian yacht Blue Marlin in Caribbean.  When I sailed in the Caribbean I was only 4 years old. Heidi and Dad met Sjur before I signed on, so I did not know him.

 

 

One week passes all too quick. Since mum and I were supposed to fly back to Norway together, we had to drive to the airport to meet her. Mum was very happy when she saw me at the airport. Since the plane was about to take off I had to say “see you” to Heidi, Eirik and Dad. I told Dad that soon I was going to sign onboard for one year – mum just has to allow me to sign onboard first…

 

 

 

 

Bye bye – see you soon!!!

 

It was lovely to have you onboard, Peder – we are looking forward to your next visit -
Heidi, Eirik and Dad.