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We are off! S/V PEACE AND ALOHA, Update, January 24, 2005

Aloha Family and Friends,

After finally installing three new membranes in our water maker (after a ten day wait for their arrival), re-provisioning, and checking out of the Royal Langkawi Yacht Club and the country of Malaysia, we sailed to Kok Adang in the Butang Islands of Thailand to clean the boat's bottom and to make final preparations to head across the Indian Ocean. We were actually glad to be in Langkawi since we all needed to wait for over a week for the cyclones with 50 knot winds and 17 foot seas to dissipate in the Indian Ocean. On Monday, January 24, 2005 (the same day that we sailed from Ft. Lauderdale, Florida five years ago!), we are finally setting sail for Uligan in the Maldives, 1,500 miles away, which translates into about 10 nights and 11 days at sea. We will be praying for good winds and will be frugal with our diesel consumption, although we have added five-40 liter containers on deck. We will not be stopping in Sri Lanka because the port of Galle and inland for two kilometers was completely destroyed by the recent tsunami. We are very disappointed to have to miss Sri Lanka since that culture and the people were to be one of our hi-lights of our Indian Ocean Crossing. We are deeply concerned for the people of Sri Lanka and wish that we could be of help, but we would be more of a bother if we traveled there at this time.

Our tentative plan in the Maldives is to spend a week enjoying snorkeling and fishing in the last atoll to be visited on our circumnavigation. We understand that the Maldives escaped severe damage from the tsunami, so we will be very grateful for a rest stop there. We will then sail the next 1,300 miles to Salalah, Oman in about 10 days where we will reprovision, refuel, and regroup with other yachts to plan our passage of about 750 miles to Assab, Eritrea in the Red Sea passing through the problem piracy area of 180 miles between 47-49 Degrees longitude between Yemen and Somalia. We will then sail 1200 miles up the Red Sea, enjoying snorkeling along the way between gales of 40 knots on the nose and sandstorms. We have made reservations at Abu Tig Marina in Egypt for April 15 and will tour the Pyramids, Cairo and the Nile from there. We expect to arrive in the Mediterranean in Cyprus and Turkey about June 1 after sailing approximately 5,000 miles in about 5 months!

We hope that you are happy, healthy and enjoying the New Year after a blessed Holiday Season. We thank you for your love and concern in your emails after the tsunami. We still have many emails which we will answer soon. Thank you.

Please check out our website at: www.peaceandaloha.com for new Ports of Call, Christmas Card 2004 with a picture, lots of new pictures, and quick email updates etc. Unfortunately, we have had no time to update Hot News! Maybe we will have time on these long ocean passages.

Please write us if you now longer wish to receive our updates. Please answer to KH7JL@winlink.org and remember, please do NOT send this letter back with your reply. Thanks.

Keep well and keep in touch with your news. Be safe. God Bless. Fair winds and smooth seas to all our sailing friends.

With Love, Peace and Aloha,
Ellen, David, Jason and Eric
Koh Adang, Butang Islands, Thailand
January 24, 2005