PILC members sail the Gulf


“Just sit right back and you’ll hear a tale, A tale of a fateful trip That started from this tropic port Aboard this tiny ship.”

Early in February, the catamaran Rhumba, out of Ocean Marina, set sail for a day-long jaunt around three local islands. There were thirty people aboard the stalwart vessel, most of them PILC members, a few assorted family members and friends, and a gentleman from the Traveller’s Century Club, who nobody seemed to know. Our leader was Francis Zaparelli, the boat owner, who took care of everyone with a deft hand and a friendly smile. Her crew consisted of the captain, his assistant, and one other young fellow.

We set out at 9:30 under overcast skies and a fairly strong wind. The first island we went to was an hour-and-a-half ride from Ocean Marina, and by the time we got there a couple of members were quite seasick – Ann and Dolly. But they recovered nicely.

PILC members prepare for a great day aboard the catamaran Rhumba.PILC members prepare for a great day aboard the catamaran Rhumba.

The island stop allowed for kayaking, snorkeling, swimming, and exploring. Many people swam from the boat, about 100 meters, and others were taken there by motor boat.

After the hour or so on this island, a delicious barbecue was served by Francis and her staff and we set off for Monkey Island, aptly named as there were dozens of monkeys waiting for us on the shore. Francis supplied everyone who went ashore with a bag of small bananas for feeding the waiting primates. Great fun was had by all who went ashore.

We skipped the third island because it was getting late and the wind was picking up again. We didn’t want to end up stranded on Monkey Island with no bananas.

Arriving back at the marina at about 5:00 p.m., everyone agreed they had had a really great day. Thank you Helle Rantsen for organizing this trip. And thank you Francis for being a great bo’sun, and for giving us the trip at cost, allowing for all funds raised – more than 50,000 baht – to go to the PILC Welfare Fund.