August 1 – 3, 2007
Roti is a small parched-looking island only six miles off the western tip of Timor. There are a few small villages and one small town, but one must look closely to find them.
Our first stop on Roti was near the northeast corner of the island. Although we were only 23 miles from Kupang, it felt much further. When we arrived, there were three other ‘rally boats’ there, but it is a large anchorage, so it felt a long way from the maddening crowds. In the morning, two of those boats returned to Kupang, and one headed to the far western end of the island, so we had the anchorage to ourselves for our second night there.
We explored the coastline a bit by dinghy, but we did not go ashore. And although we had thought about diving in the seemingly clear water, we decided against it. We wanted to get a few more miles under our keel, so we headed a bit further west.
We sailed past the only town on the island – Baa. We were far enough offshore that we couldn’t tell much about it, but it appeared small and without any obvious industry. Then we sailed on to our second anchorage which was near the western end of the island.
We were pleased to find no other boats in the anchorage when we arrived. A small manta ray greeted us, and it stayed around to entertain us for another half hour or so. This part of the island is uninhabited, and Bud went ashore to explore. His biggest find were some friendly goats, and he did a bit of shelling.
We thought that we might stay for a few days, but then the swell rolled in. We had a miserable night there rolling 20 degrees to one side then 20 degrees to the other side- all night long. So we planned our course for Sumba – about 175miles north – and headed off.