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Sunday, October 21, 2012

October 8, 2012 - Time to Express Disappointment About "Sail Indonesia 2012"

I must digress here to make a few pertinent points for the benefit of anyone who reads this blog and is planning to participate in a future Sail Indonesia rally. Although the rally events continue through 30 October, the officials INCORRECTLY date-stamped our cruising permits (CAIT) to expire on 15 Oct. This has caused an uproar among the rally participants that we have been asking to be corrected for weeks. As far as I know no one has received the promised corrected CAIT. Furthermore, the visa extensions that were arranged for us expire on 27 Oct. Great planning, Sail Indonesia. Additionally, most of us have joined the Sail Malaysia Rally that begins at Danga Bay, Malaysia on 2 Nov. Many of us want to visit Singapore along the way, which sits between Indonesia and Malaysia. In order to have any time at all in Singapore, we have to rev up the planner and hot foot it through the rest of Indonesia. Interestingly, Sail Indonesia and Sail Malaysia planned these events in tandem, and obviously not very well.

At Kumai, the rally events were scheduled for Oct 4 - 7, the emphasis being on 6 & 7 for the formal welcome and the "events", hence we scheduled our tour for Oct 4 & 5. On arrival, however, Sam the Sail Indonesia Rep., moved the ceremonial event dates up by two days so that we missed the official activities that occurred during our tour up the river. They did not, however, change the dates for future official stops. The next official stop is Manggar, E. Belitung, but not "officially" until 20 Oct. This is silly because there is no other place to go between 7 Oct and 20 Oct, hence the last three rally stops have gotten the short end of the stick because by now, many yachts have carried on, blowing off the schedule in order to get on up to Malaysia in time. Sail Indonesia put the screws to Belitung and Bangka who have spent a lot of resources, time and money in anticipation of the big rally events at their locations. We do hope there will be some yachts still around to do them justice.

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