Category Archives: Coquito

Final landfall

Sorry for the delay but there was just too much happening these last weeks leaving no time for blog updates or other forms of communication besides what was absolutely needed…

So here we are. Back in Berlin, the city we left with the Rancho Relaxo of the Seas just a little over three years ago. We relocated six (!) times during these last weeks, moving from appartment to appartment and back and forth in between Austria and Germany. And to intensify that experience, Gui flew to Colombia to have her very first Fashion Show with Coquito, then visited Paris to have a look at the children’s clothes fair ‘Playtime‘ where hopefully Coquito will be present next year.

The models getting prepared.Little beauties in gorgeous dresses...Fashion show in tropical climate. Nice.Gui and her models.

In the meantime I was working overtime to get back into ‘the machine’, getting registered as a citizen, getting insurance, enlisting and visiting the school of our children, organizing the transport of our few belongings that we left with my parents in Austria, meeting friends, finding a job, getting essential furniture and finding out why our stuff from the boat still didn’t arrive in Germany and and…. Believe me: the life in the south seas was a lot more relaxing.

In beautiful AustriaAnd back in BerlinStreet artFirst day of school !

But compared to my last visit of Berlin where I was quite shocked by the ‘western civilisation’ – coming just from French Polynesia, this time it’s different. It probably is mostly owed to the fact that we all were very looking forward to being in Europe again, having access, money, a smart phone, running water, a fridge and shops that are around the corner instead of a one hour dinghy ride away. Despite all the stress, we all enjoy ourselves, are quite relaxed and happy with the city life.

Leaving the house early in the morning, excited and happyMy beautiful girls on the way to schoolThe welcoming of the first graders takes place in the historic cinema 'Babylon'.Every single new scholar is greeted by his teacher

Still, when I hear the wind shake the leaves I immediately search the sky for signs of bad weather, we don’t really know what to do with all the space in our appartment and all my clothes still fit into a cabinet too small to even qualify as a bedside locker. We enjoy seeing so many old friends and connecting with new people. The kids started school last week and although it’s a little tough for Bruno starting school in 3rd grade and in english, he does very well. Viola’s classes will officially start on monday and she cannot wait to finally go to a ‘real’ school. Heh.

The class 1cIn school...Playtime !Brain jogging

So on monday we’ll all leave home early in the morning… dropping the kids off at school and then I’ll be starting work in the office again. Funnily enough I also got a VERY interesting offer to deliver a yacht from Turkey to France. But I had to decline since all the other stuff going on didn’t make it seem clever to leave my family with all the chaos. But – hey – maybe again in spring ? Offers welcome !

Posted in Berlin, Coquito, Kids, LosLocos, Pics, Travel | 5 Comments

Rekordjagd in der Bilge

Wie so oft vor grossen Ozean-Schlaegen wuehlen wir uns durch die diversen Schapps und Bilgen des Schiffes, machen eine kleine Inventur, sortieren aus was gleich verkocht werden muss, entdecken no-name Dosen mit Ueberraschungsinhalt, wundern uns darueber, warum wir Spargel aus England haben, etc.

Mal wieder ein paar Dosen rausraeumenUeberraschung !Neuer Ablauf-Rekord !Die letzten Rollen Stoff, die noch keinen endgueltigen Platz gefunden haben...

Eigentlich wollte ich mir ein Posting zum Thema Proviant sparen, da ihr die Bilder bereits kennt: Ein Kleinwagen voller Lebensmittel wird quer ueber den Strand und ins Dinghy geschleppt, zum Schiff gepaddelt und verschwindet dann langsam aber sicher wieder in den schier endlosen Staufaechern der Suvarov. Der Grund fuer das heutige Posting ist eigentlich der neue Rekord. Ablauf-Rekord ! Und zwar haben wir ein Arnika Massageoel gefunden, dass im September 2003 abgelaufen ist. – Der letzte Rest wurde vor zwei Tagen in eine massiv heilende und wohltuenede Ruecken-Massage fuer’n Captain investiert. Das ist die Silber-Medaille. Gold geht an eine paar Knick-Lichter, die im Juni 1998 (!!) abgelaufen waren. Diese wurden in der Leuchtkraft sogar vom Plankton der Lagune uebertroffen. Aber vorwerfen kann man ihnen das nicht… -  im letzten Jahrtausend abgelaufen. Haha.

Im Stoffladen 'Venus' in Papeete.Einfach traumhaft, die Farben.

Ach ja und dann gibt’s da noch zwei Fotos aus dem wunderschoene Stoffladen, den Gui um ca. 80kg leichter gemacht hat. Diese Farben – einfach unglaublich. Und zu sehen wird’s die Stoffe dann wieder in zwei Jahren geben, in der Coquito Fruehling/Sommerkollektion 2015 !

Posted in Coquito, LosLocos, Pics, Sailing, Suvarov, Work | Comments Off

The last repairs (hopefully)

The weather is changing. The water got a lot warmer during the last two weeks and the sun is back to it’s full power. – The southern summer is approaching and we should be gone by now. It hurts to see the wind pick up. There’s perfect sailing conditions from here all the way to the torres strait. But instead of using the wind, again we’re repairing. We took down the Genoa, dropped the roller furler including the stay (inside) and dismounted it. Now we can take the cable and try to find a replacement in Papeete. Actually it’s going to be an upgrad as we’ll put a 12mm stay – it should have been that size all along anyway.

During the ‘breaks’ I stiched up the Genoa, put UV protection spray on all our sunroof, tried to repair the handle of the stove twice (but proke off again), glued the floor of our Kayak three times (always to find yet another hole), installed the missing vents for the aft cabin, replaced completely corroded rivets that attach the boom to the mast, installed a new navigation light on the top of the mast, tested the shortwave antenna, etc etc.

Gui is working non-stop for Coquito as these are our last days with internet connection and the new collection is about to hit the stores in Europe.  Phew ! After all this, the sailing to Vanuatu will feel like a holiday…

Posted in Coquito, LosLocos, Pics, Sailing, Suvarov, Work | 3 Comments

The Rancho Relaxo of the Seas has a new owner !

Sunday Morning we start our voyage towards Tahiti, where we arrive at 16h and tie up at the city pier. Today it’s Sunday program: dinner at the Roulott’s in the harbour and afterwards we take the kids to a childrens’s movie at the cinema – who knows where we will find the next cinema ?

Monday is work day: Gui, me and the kids march towards Fare Ute, Gui continues to the customs where she will negotiate the ‘Papeetisation’: If a ship changes owners here in french Polynesia, 26% of the value of the vessel have to be paid as a tax. But the Rancho Relaxo couldn’t be sold and we will give her as a present. Thanks to the persuasion of Gui and a very helpful agent we can lower the Papeetisation to next to nothing. It would be totally in Moitessier’s sense: We were extremely lucky when we had our crash landing and thanks to the help of so many friends and our families we got a second chance. Now we help somebody else and give our old ship without anything in return.

In the meantime I walk in that order to: ACE hardware 1, ACE hardware 2, dive shop, tool shop, Nautisport, Yamaha dealer, Sing Tun Hing Marine. At noon we meet for lunch as most shops and offices are closed. Afterwards we again visit: ACE1, ACE2, Nautisport, Sing Tun Hing, steel shop, AS Systems, Ocean 2000 und fully packed we get back to the ship. That’s really something. Marching the whole day in tropical heat with two children through the town without the little ones complaining even once ! At the ship we unload everything, put the new shortwave antenna on deck and only minutes later we’re on our way south towards the Taina Marina.

Tuesday, early in the morning I bring Gui ashore where she continues her oddysee: Papeete again to deliver papers to the agent, later to pick up my new sunglasses then all the way down to Taravao in the south of Tahiti where she orders new mast steps for the Suvarov, then to pick up seeds and two seedlings of the ‘Magic Tree’. In the mean time Christoph the new owner of the Rancho arrives and we show him the Rancho and start working. We have to repair the bilge pumps, replace the leaking stuffing box, check the fuel, start the engine, repair the steering and the kerosene stove and bend the sprayhood back to it’s original shape. We install a spare anchor at the bow and clear the deck, etc. At 18h the Rancho is ready and we’re all wrecked. We meet ashore to have a shower and a beer and call it a day.

Wednesday morning, Gui again travels to Papeete to finally pick up the fabrics for Coquito, while I get the Suvarov ready to leave and Christoph removes ten months worth of mussels and green stuff from the hull of the Rancho. At ten in the morning Gui arrives and we meet at the gas station where we get 120 liters of Diesel, Christoph brings the bottom part of Rancho’s old Mast on bord and we store about 50kg of fabrics. We set back out into the mooring field where we go alongside the Rancho and fill her tank with 20l Diesel and put the kayak on bord so Christoph has something that floats – just in case. At noon we’re ready and travel through the lagoon towards Papeete, followed by the Rancho. Christoph is at the steering and smiles like a child at christmas as we exit through the pass and find ourselves out on the Pacific again. For once the weather report was correct and indeed we have no wind and nearly no swell. We run under engine with five knots towards Moorea, the Rancho always 100m behind us. As we start dreaming of Tonga and Fiji and can’t think how it could get any better, a huge whale jumps out of the water just 200m in front of us ! Seconds later a younger whale follows and splashes back into the sea. We stand at the bow, shout ‘Uuuuh !!’ and ‘Aaaah !’, while we slowly pass the whales. What a crazy day ! Soon later two other whales follow us a bit towards the Cook’s Bay. At 16h we enter the Opunohu Bay and find ourselves surprised how much we think of this anchorage as our ‘home’ now. We throw the anchor while the Rancho is tied to the mooring that was prepard for her right in front of Christoph’s house.


The next months he will slowly restore the Rancho to her old beauty. And as both he and his wife are sailors the chances are quite good that soon the Rancho Relaxo of the Seas will set out for another amazing journey. Oh, wow. We’re sooo happy !!

Posted in Animals, Coquito, Freedom, LosLocos, Pics, Rancho Relaxo, Sailing, Suvarov, Work | 3 Comments

…and landing !

On our way towards the southern pass we have the predicted 25 knots of wind. As we approach the pass, we can see it disappear in front of our eyes : Usually quite wide and easy to sail through, it has shrunken to a third of it’s usual size. The rest is white water and waves. We already had set sails during the two miles we had to motor through the lagoon. The main sail is in the third reef as is the genoa.  We are only a few minutes outside the reef as the Maramu really kicks in. With amazement I see the wind instrument showing 50 knots while I put another reef in the sails and roll both of them to the size of a big towel. Now is also the start of the rush hour on channel 16. During the next two hours there will be no silence on the emergency channel. We hear of yachts drifting through anchorages, dinghies that get thrown through the air and recovered by other boats. The MRCC is in contact with two vessels that are out on sea and in troubles. Later we hear of a catamaran drifting towards the reef in Moorea.

That all happens while we’re doing eight knots going downwind towards the north-east corner of Moorea. Luckily we had our little test run a few days earlier, so nothing comes loose on the deck and also on the inside of the boat everything stays in it’s place. It even is dry inside as the deck vents don’t leak water anymore. But two breakers about half way through our journey bury the whole aft deck and cockpit in white water and a few liters find their way in through a broken seal in the back entrance. It was planned as a fast voyage with 25 knots downwind sailing and instead we get a ride in a storm: For the two hours that we are in between the islands, the wind establishes itself at 45 to 55 knots with gusts reaching over 65 knots. That’s where the beaufort scale ends – at force 12 !

Just after the NE-corner of Moorea we get some more choppy sea after which the waves quickly die down in the lee of the island. The wind also eases to 30-35 knots and we put a little more sail out. We continue sailing along the reef in close distance and finally tack through the pass into the Opunohu bay. The anchorage we enter under sails and Bruno receives cheers from the neighboring boats while he helps me anchoring the boat.
That really was an exciting trip and another good test for the Suvarov and her crew. Especially as we were without our capitana this time. She’s already landed in New Zealand and will continue her travel to Buenos Aires in a few days. – Odysee, LosLocos style. Now I’m gonna pack the wet mattress into the sun and relax for a while

Posted in Coquito, Learning for life, LosLocos, Pics, Sailing, Suvarov | 3 Comments

Takeoff…

With the LosLocos, everything always is well planned and organized and that’s why we always are so extremely relaxed. This for example means that the day after we arrived from Bora Bora we spent the whole day emptying out the ship and cleaning everything on the inside with fresh water. The night we had two friends of the Bruno staying for a sleepover. Next day we started at 06h with birthday action and later had a nice party on the beach. Just when everything was over and we had cleaned the dishes, we went anchor-up and left for Tahiti.

This time we stayed at the pontoon in the city. Next morning at 06h Gui was already underway to get her carte de sejours – to extend her allowed time in the country. On the way back through the city we bought about 50 kilos of fabrics for Coquito and had to wrestle everything back to the ship. Right after we get everything on board, we leave towards the Marina Taina. It’s a few miles south and is closer to the airport in Tahaa. But I’m a bit nervous about the anchorage there as the wind is supposed to shift to the south on the next day and that can lead to a Maramu: a strong wind from the south that get’s accelerated in between the islands. We’ve seen it before and know that we could not get ashore in our dinghy in those conditions which means we might have to plan for a water taxi.

When sailing towards the marina we are amazed by the number of boats here. The main season really has arrived. No free mooring balls and plenty of yachts in the limited space there is to put an anchor. But we boldly throw the iron right in front of the dinghy dock into the 16m deep water of the lagoon. While Gui fights to fit 60kg of luggage into two bags a 23kg and her hand luggage, I take the kids to Carrefour where we get some good food for the coming days. While there I run into Lily from the SY Portal who contacted me earlier to talk about selling the windvane of the Rancho Relaxo. We agree to postpone the negotiations to dinnertime in the pizzeria. At sunset we’re in the restaurant and enjoy our last minutes together – and we also sell Wendy our windvane.
On wednesday at 04:50h in the morning the buzzing  of the alarm clock throws us out of bed and I take Gui and her luggage to the dinghy dock where the cab is already waiting. Later at about eight in the morning we see how the windvane is dismounted and transported to the SY Portal. That’s when we also see the dark clouds approach from the south. We quickly say good bye to our friends, get the dinghy up and leave before the Maramu hits…

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(Deutsch) Zurueck in der Zeitzone TAHT (UTC-10)

Sorry, this entry is only available in Deutsch.

Posted in Animals, Coquito, Kids, LosLocos, Pics, Rancho Relaxo, Suvarov, Travel | 1 Comment

Viola’s birthday – more photos

Sunday we were celebrating Viola’s fifth birthday. There were all our friends from the anchorage/beach as well as Jean Claude and his daughters, friends from school and more.

The party started right in the morning with the setting up of the slack line, some weird rope game, putting baloons in the trees and while the kids were preparing these things, the skip sneaked out and buried a treasure deep under a coconut palm.

The gang had a lot of fun, searching the park for the hidden hints towards the treasure while the grown ups tried their balance on the slack line. But there was one thing that stole away the attention from the celebration: The puppies !

Somebody left seven little puppies under a tree in the park and they all found food and love with the kids that cuddled and carried them. When we left on monday all but two of the little dogs already had found a new home.

Next day we had to leave towards Tahiti. As usual, there’s not much wind and we were running under engine. Back in Tahiti, we dismounted and sold the windgenerator, the VHF and the fridge. Finally things get moving…

Oh ! And I nearly forgot to mention: I’m gonna fly to Europe !!!! Yessss !!! The Ackerman Foundation sponsored the flight to get Gui’s label Coquito started. So I’ll be in Berlin and Austria the first three weeks of may, starting a business and getting parts for the Suvarov. And of course visiting all my friends and my family – oh, I’m so happy. It’s been two years. I really am excited about that trip. Yay !!

Posted in Animals, Berlin, Coquito, Kids, LosLocos, Pics, Sailing, Suvarov | Comments Off

Interview on Segelradio

Shortly before the arrival of my family, I did a long interview with Hinnerk Weiler of Segelradio. You can listen to it HERE. It’s in German. So not sure, why I’m writing about this on the english side of the blog…

Oh – and yes. We’re all happy together again. The first day after the LosLocos returned, we sailed back to Moorea again. And here we’re right now enjoying the beach, the palms and the beautiful water while being happy to be together again. Soon I’m gonna post some more pics and stories. – Yes, many things happened already….

Posted in Coquito, Kids, Links, LosLocos, Pics, Rancho Relaxo, Sailing, Suvarov | 6 Comments

(Deutsch) Ein paar Antworten und die Rueckkehr der Sonne

Sorry, this entry is only available in Deutsch.

Posted in Coquito, LosLocos, Pics, Rancho Relaxo, Sailing, Suvarov | 7 Comments

Late shift

The webshop for Coquito is advancing faster than I expected. That’s mostly thanks to the weather of course. One meter beside me there are 30 knots of wind and horizontal rain – I better stay inside. Because of the sound I can’t sleep and try to work on the computer again. Suddenly I hear  noise…. a sailboat drifts past the port window….

The small, red ketch from Switzerland stops right between the Suvarov and the Domani. The anchor finally took hold after a 100m downwind ride. Luckily there is enough room in between the boats to stay like this until the wind eases. After the situation calms down a bit, I place myself at the desk again to edit CSS und Smarty templates.

Posted in Coquito, Pics, Sailing, Suvarov, Work | 1 Comment

(Deutsch) Alleine in Papeete

Sorry, this entry is only available in Deutsch.

Posted in Argentina, Coquito, Kids, LosLocos, Pics, Rancho Relaxo, Suvarov, Travel | 8 Comments

Support for the Rancho Relaxo of the Seas

Many friends and readers of our blog have asked us how to help and whether they could possibly support us financially. To be honest, in the beginning I was absolutely scared of that thought for a couple of reasons. First of all it’s a thing of pride, I guess. But most of that I lost on that reef in Tetiaroa and as for the rest – I’ll just have to ignore it. Second thought: It was our decision to set out and search for adventure and a simpler life – which we mostly found. My navigation as a skipper was not safe and it was ME who fell asleep during the watch so why should someone else pay for my mistake ? Third: Although some financial aid would ease our situation at the moment and possibly even pay for part of the repairs, how would we move on ? We have to earn some money ! We’re considering writing for sailing magazines, possibly start writing an (E-) book, I could do some IT-work, Gui is planning to create a web shop for her children’s clothes label ‘Coquito’… any tipps and ideas are welcome !

What changed our mind in the end is that we would have no problem at all to accept hands-on help to work on the boat. But as we’re stuck here in the middle of the Pacific Ocean, this is not an option. So why would we refuse donations ?
We have created that little Paypal donate button on the side and right there you will also be able to find the details for our german bank account. The decision to write this really wasn’t easy. We are thankful for every cent that will help us to move on ! Thank you all for your support (monetary or otherwise) !

Posted in Coquito, LosLocos, Pics, Rancho Relaxo, Sailing | 13 Comments

A week at ‘la casita’ with Memé

So, she’s off, back to San José !! My mother was here the last week and we “shared” the little house she rented for five days. Actually the children moved in since the moment she arrived, and the day after David and me followed, and so, enjoyed the air conditioned, the “huge” kitchen and a 100% dry bed.

Since there is not much to do here in Golfito, exept for buying parts for the boat… well, we stayed inside quite almost the whole time. Every evening we had a little chat on the bench in the terrasse, wondering what do people actually do in this lost corner of the world, at the border between Costa Rica and Panama, with heavy humidity and heat the whole day and the whole night. But the good thing is, we worked a lot on my label Coquito the time we where together… we discussed new ideas for the coming collections and skyped a lot with Annette, our college in Berlin.

And of course, Bruno and Viola where extremely happy to have her near and spend 24h/24h with their “memé”. That made also the farewell a little sad, and they cryed a lot, saying they wanted to go back to Argentina with her – their plan was that we would come and pick up them a couple of days later-  :) So, mum, it was great to have you here, even you didn’t put a foot on the Rancho Relaxo this time !

Posted in Coquito, LosLocos, Pics, Rancho Relaxo, Work | 6 Comments

Back from Argentina

One busy week ago, I came back from my last holiday. Three weeks in Argentina, while Gui, Bruno and Viola will stay there until the end of February. The last winter, the last holiday, the last stupid security check at airports…

Well, we had the most wonderful time in Argentina. Nice meat, saucages, cheese from the Barrilla, many hours in the pool, lots of nature and silence. Beautiful nights with a sky full of starts. During the day Campari Soda, building an Arcade Joystick for Gioco, Building little ships out of bamboo, etc.

Now that I’m back in Berlin and alone (until now), I’ll fokus on getting back into the Amateur Radio materials, reading some more books and updating this website. Some pics – the rest will be in the Gallery soon:

Posted in Argentina, Coquito, LosLocos, Pics, Travel | Comments Off

Coquito Christmas sale – last chance

This weekend (Friday/Saturday) will be the final days of the Coquito Christmas sale. So whoever needs some nice handmade gifts for children – don’t waste time and visit us !

Coquito sale flyer

Posted in Berlin, Coquito, Work | Comments Off

Coquito im Himbeer Magazin !

In der aktuellen Printausgabe des Himbeer-Magazin ist ein Artikel ueber Coquito zu finden – aber damit nicht genug ! Ploetzlich findet sich auf der Startseite des Magazins eine sehr nette Vorstellung des Modelabels und eine Ankuendung fuer den Sonderverkauf bei uns in der Wohnung, diesen Freitag und Samstag !

Und wer haette das gedacht – noch am selben Abend gibt’s die erste Anfrage eines Ladens, der gerne Coquito Sachen verkaufen moechte. Yay-woo !!

Hier der Artikel, so wie er heute im Web zu sehen war:

Himbeer Magazin - ueber Coquito

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