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A no show

Posted in: Baby on Thursday, March 3rd, 2016

It might be worth tuning out now blokes, this pregnancy stuff is about to get real.

Today I lost my show.

For those of you who don’t know the ‘show’ is it’s the mucus plug that blocks the cervix. I won’t go into any further detail. If you’re pregnant now or have been before no doubt you’ll know all about what it looks like, it’s colour variations and how much you can expect to see. Or if you’re planning to start a family down the track i’ll leave some of the beautiful feminine mystery for you to find out yourself. Or Google it and continue to be amazed by the female body’s journey through pregnancy.

Generally you lose your show just before labour is due to start, or it can be an early warning sign that things are ramping up for the big day. I lost mine this morning.

As I hurried back to the boat I just barely kept ahead of a giant crashing wave of anxiety, I’m not ready, i’m not ready, i’m not ready. Then rather logically, i’m not ready therefore i’m not in labour. Holy shit I’m. NOT. READY!. My game face completely crumpled.  Back on board and i’m on the phone to Ben who had just got on a train to work “i’ve lost my show, can you remember what they said at class? Am I going into labour?” queue the hormonal pregnant lady hysteria “i’m not readyyyyyy”  As usual he talked me back from the cliff where crazy people live and we decided I’d call my doctors after they open and find out what I should do from here.

Like any pregnant lady who might or might not be about to go into labour I decide to do the dishes and tidy the galley. Can’t have a messy kitchen. So I clean with one eye on what i’m doing, and the other on the clock. Somehow I’m managing to see what i’m doing through the tears that I have no idea why i’m crying. 8am rolls around but it turns out my doctors don’t open until 8.30am.  Knowing that another 1/2 hour will definitely push my sanity I decide to call my hospital (who will be delivering me) and speak to the midwife there. After lots of questions regarding my show and my pregnancy they asked me how her movements had been this morning and It dawned on me that i’d felt hardly any. “Okay then Sarah, we’ll get you to make your way in and we’ll pop you on the monitor just to make sure you’re both okay”.

 

Monitoring her heart rate and my uterine contractions

Monitoring her heart rate and my uterine contractions

So I sit on the machine for an hour during which my capricious girl decides that now I’ve come all the way into the hospital she’ll start doing her morning rumba practice. The Doctor and Midwife were certainly pleased to see her so active but it did make it harder to determine her baseline heart rate, so I spent some more time being monitored. During that time I had three tightenings, or what are known as braxton hicks contractions and some pretty sharp pains at my cervix.  All very normal and it was decided that I wasn’t yet in labour, and may not be for a while yet, or it could all kick off in a few hours. There’s just no way of knowing for sure. So they sent me back home to rest. I lost more of my show later in the afternoon. And I am trying to rest. But honestly, the floor really needed to be vacuumed and there’s the fact i’m feeling very emotional and my brain is not shutting down.

All I keep thinking is that I’ve read the books, I’ve worked on my head space and my mindfulness, I’ve watched the shows. I thought I had my shit together. That when the time came I’d be this calm, well informed birthing Goddess completely confident in myself and my body, a tower of Queenly strength. But I wobbled massively.  I’ve realised how easy it is to feel empowered and confident when the big day is still in the mystical future realm of a ‘few weeks time’. That magic realm in which pain, panic and fear don’t exist and you’ll be the shining vision of everything you want to be and things go to plan and everyone is smiley and happy. Oh and there’s rivers of chocolate and unicorns crap rainbows!

It’s completely different when you wake up to a relatively normal day and with no warning it turns into one that could end up changing your life forever.

Thankfully it would seem I have a bit more time yet. Although If today has taught me anything it’s that there’ll never be enough time and you can never really be ready.

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The Joys of Pregnancy – 33 Weeks

Posted in: Baby on Tuesday, February 16th, 2016

By 33 weeks you’re well into the third trimester and by all accounts the most physically uncomfortable stage of pregnancy. They’re not wrong.

For me week 33 is definitely starting to feel like going through life with a 1.5kg watermelon strapped to your middle with at times depressing and hilarious results.

The joy begins each morning with the feat of perseverance that is getting out of bed. This is probably one of the few areas of boat life that makes being pregnant that little bit harder. How much easier would it be if I could just heave and roll out of my own side of the bed. Instead I have to employ an almost crab like, raised butt shuffle across the expanse of our double berth. Some days it’s easier to have my husband grab a leg and pull me delicately across to the end, then pull up while I push up and hooray i’m upright.

I can no longer see my feet and we’re fast approaching the point in my pregnancy and marriage where my devoted husband’s willingness to shave my legs will be tested. I assure him it’s just like shaving a really long neck but he remains to be convinced.

Then there is the fact that for the last few weeks my previously feminine way of walking has been devolving into a definite waddle with a primate-like arm swing thrown in for good measure. The effect is heightened when I try to ‘hurry’ anywhere. And the depressing thing is there is nothing I can do about it. If I do try and walk like a normal person the end result is something even John Cleese would find hilarious. Gracefulness of motion is simply no longer possible.

Which brings me to the sounds I now find myself making. So far bending over is still somewhat possible but sadly not without the involuntary release of grunts and groans similar to those you’d expect from a wallowing hippo that’s gotten a little stuck in the river mud. Even basic movements like getting up from the couch are no longer done in dignified silence.

And If I’m home alone and need something out of the bilge storage lockers, or any stowage close to the floor, I better bring a book or something to keep me occupied because once I’ve gotten down there following a careful three stage process, I will be down there a while. I simply do not have the energy to engage in the much lengthier six stage process of getting back up. The other day, my dear wonderful mother who hasn’t been below decks of our new boat actually asked me in a concerned tone if there was anywhere that I could get stuck or more accurately wedged. I laughed at first, but now I find myself seriously assessing the space I live in for choke points. According to my current assessment I should be fine.

Then there’s the fact I’ve been scanned, poked and probed more than an unfortunate victim of extra-terrestrial curiosity. My doctors can’t decide if my cervix is shortening or is in fact remaining stable so there is the medication i’m not taking orally (no, not that way either) which results in an increase of the joy that is pregnancy gas. Which quite frankly i’m surprised isn’t being sold in canisters for use in biological warfare. My poor husband has literally had his head wedged out a hatch gasping for fresh air. You definitely have to keep a sense of humour about you when you’re pregnant.

A love of science fiction also helps because at 33 weeks my ‘watermelon’ is doing some pretty weird and totally surreal things. Some times If I didn’t know any better i’d say my little one thinks the way out is through my belly button which is regularly being poked with feet, hands and elbows. We’ve laid and watched an arm or leg roll across my belly and my watermelon change shape before my eyes.

But through all the waddling, groaning and especially during the gymnastics sessions being performed inside me is the lovely realisation that our beautiful girl will soon be with us. In what feels like a few short weeks our lives will be forever changed and our cosy home aboard Runaway will be enriched even further by her presence. It’s a lovely realisation and i’m looking forward to it, I just need to survive the next few weeks of waddling, nightly reflux, the kicks to my bladder all while managing not to get wedged somewhere on board.

 

 

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Baby on a Boat?

Posted in: Baby on Wednesday, November 25th, 2015

It’s the question on everyone’s mind.

How will you raise a baby on a boat? You don’t intend to stay on board now that you’re having a baby? What will you do with the boat, will you move back to land? Where will you put everything? Can I buy tickets to the show?

These are just some of the questions that get asked out loud. Goodness knows what goes through peoples heads, but their faces raise a lot more doubt and disbelief when they find out our plans to raise our baby on a boat.

Let them doubt and question. We know how crazy our plan sounds to others and we’re okay with it. Besides who isn’t a little crazy these days.

In fairness it does sound like a pretty crazy plan although we prefer bold, audacious, brave or even a little off beat.

We think the idea is just crazy enough to work. In fact we know it’s just crazy enough to have worked for others. And it’s those trail blazers, those crazy parenting pioneers that give us the courage to raise a child in a life less ordinary.

Welcome onboard

We knew even before we bought our beloved first boat that the long term plan for us would include raising our children in the cruising life. We also knew that we’d have to eventually buy a different boat for that to be possible. Those who know us or follow us on social media or read this oft-neglected blog will know that earlier this year we did just that. And in a happy twist of fate we fell pregnant not long after (the wonders of a proper size bed!)

For this plan of ours to stand the best chance of working our ‘baby boat’ had to meet specific criteria.

It had to have an aft cabin that would provide a separation of living and sleeping spaces unlike our old boat where living and sleeping were one and the same. The new boat had to have a better equipped galley with a fridge and freezer and an oven. It also needed to have a functional and functioning head with a hot/cold shower and toilet. It was important that Ben be able to sail it short handed and not least of all it had to have a space that could serve as a nursery for our little one.

What we found not only met all those expectations but far exceeded them. Runaway Moon is the perfect little home for our baby to spend her first few years.

We don’t know what those first few years will bring but we know that like any new parents be they land based or water borne we will face plenty of challenges. Some that are unique to us and the life we’ve chosen to lead and others that are universal to all new parents. Our little one will completely change how we live in our small space. She will push us to the edge of our patience not only with each other, but with her and with our boat. She will test the strength of our relationship. She will require us to sacrifice even more material things to make room for her.  But most of all she will fill the limitless space in our hearts to bursting, so that all of the above will hardly seem to matter.

 

 

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The Very Expensive Swim

Posted in: Featured, The Ships Cat on Wednesday, July 8th, 2015
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It was a normal night, eating dinner watching the telly. We hadn’t thought it odd that Fluffy wasn’t with us, as some of his favourite spots to curl up are at the stern of the boat where we can’t see him. Suddenly our neighbour Christine was racing down the dock towards Tygress calling my name in obvious distress. I got up on deck totally unaware of how drastically our night was about to change.

“I found him swimming in the water, I don’t think he’s going to make it” she said has she handed me a small, soaking and very limp bundle of fur.

“I don’t think he’s going to make it” Christine repeated as I was coming to the jarring relisation that the small, soaking and very limp bundle of fur was our precious boy. He’d gotten out while I was up having a shower and I didn’t even realise (we were to later learn that he had figured out he could climb the screen door). Christine’s concern was palpable and despite the whirlwind of emotions I was flung into it touched me that she was just as concerned for our boy as we were. She had saved him.

Christine had, through the sheer luck of being in the right place at the right time, heard splashing in the dark and went to grab a torch so she could see what it was. When she realised what was in the water,  it was her quick thinking and her quick actions that had saved him. He had barely enough strength left to climb the life buoy thrown to him. Had Christine not been outside doing her washing Fluff’s old body would have very soon tired, his little head dropping below the water more and more and he would’ve drowned a lonely death full of struggle and fear, in the dark. We’d never have seen him again. The thought is almost too much to bear.

“Ben, quick! He’s gone in, I think he’s going to die’ I called through the door as I fumbled for a towel in the cockpit. He’s so light and thin, oh my God he’s so limp. “We’ve got to get him to the vet now”. Ben dropped everything, nothing was turned off, the boat didn’t get closed up and Fluffy was bundled up in my arms and we raced through the marina to the car. It was the longest that walk has ever felt. It was long enough for the grief, the shock, the guilt and chest wracking sobs to hit. I was a wreck. I sobbed all the way to the vet, all the fear, shame, guilt and love came pouring out. Shame because how could we have not known he was in the water? How could we have not heard him? Guilt because we weren’t there to save him. Fear that we were going to lose him. So much fear.

It's a hard life!

It’s a hard life!

For some people pets are just that, pets, animals that they look after, feed and water and go through all the motions. But for the lucky ones, they’re so much more. They’re friends, our companions, furry parts of our hearts that run around outside our bodies. We are the lucky ones. Fluffy has been with us since just after Ben and I met and we knew forever was going to be a thing, that’s more than 13 years ago. There has only ever been three weeks of just Ben and Sarah because on the fourth week we brought him home from the RSPCA and everyday since we’ve woken to his furry face. I don’t know what it’s like to be us without him. And the fact that we might soon find out was terrifying.

We got to the vets just after another car pulled in and out jumped another woman with a bundled towel cradled in her arms. The desire to run to the door ahead of her was strong, but I resisted. The state I was in was all the staff needed to know and we were taken through immediately. I had to put him down on the bench, but I couldn’t let him go, they coaxed him away from me and pulled back the towel so they could have a look at him.  They took his temperature in a rather undignified manner, listened to his chest and got him wrapped up in something that might have been called a bear hug. Basically it’s just a piece of heated flexible piping they wrap him in. We were told he had hypothermia but was otherwise okay, no water on his lungs and a strong heartbeat. What followed was one of the worst experiences I’ve had as a pet parent at the vets. “How long was he in the water?” we’re not sure. “When did he go in the water?” we don’t know. “You didn’t know he was in the water?” we didn’t even know he was outside. They were necessary questions but boy did they really ram home the shame and guilt. More tears.

They kept him on fluids overnight and put him in a humidifier to bring his body temperature up.  They told us to go home and to call in two hours for an update but he should be fine. It was hard to leave him but he was already starting to behave more like himself. Tygress felt so empty when we got home without him. Cold dinners were left uneaten, the telly stayed off and we sat and worried about all the what ifs. What if he doesn’t come home? How can we live on this boat without him? What if it’s all my fault?. But when we phoned throughout the next 12 hours they told us that he was alert and very talkative and doing well for a cat his age that had gone through the ordeal that he did. We picked him up the following evening and never has a cat been more cuddled.

So what have we learnt from all of this? First, despite being over 19 years old he can still scale screen doors so we need to pull the companionway hatch lid closed fully when leaving the boat. The thrill night time exploration still calls to him. Second, we need to have something in the water for him to climb should this ever happen again, either a towel or a thick line. The thought of his terror while swimming around unable to get out makes me so sad. Third, how completely unprepared I am for losing him and just how lucky he is to be alive.  I don’t think Christine fully understands what a service she did for us that night and how deeply and forever grateful we are. To this day she still walks past looking to see him on deck and always asks after him when we see each other on the dock.

A few days after and he's sleeping blissfully on my yoga mat. Note the shaved little leg.

A few days after and he’s sleeping blissfully on my yoga mat. Note the shaved little leg.

 

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Different Survey, Different Day

Posted in: Buying, Featured on Wednesday, July 1st, 2015
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and a different boat!

If you’ve never bought a boat before then an important thing to do before signing on the dotted line is to have a pre-purchase survey done. It’s a comprehensive examination of all areas of the boat, both above the waterline and below and is undertaken by qualified surveyor. For our survey on Runaway Moon we used Barry Colson, we had been very happy with his service during Tygress’s insurance survey last year and we felt we could trust his assessment of the vessel.

We woke at our version of ‘early’ which is a very civilised 8 o’clock and had some coffee while waiting for our broker Detlef and Barry to arrive.

It gave us time to think on the differences this survey day compared with our survey day for Tygress.

For a start we woke only two berths down on our own boat that we’ve lived happily on for over three years, last time we traveled across Brisbane to be here. Secondly, with Tygress, we went through the whole sale and survey process without ever meeting the owner.  This time with Runaway Moon we were very lucky to have Alan with us and available to answer any questions Barry had about onboard systems.

But I think the most important difference this time is that we’re boaties, boats are our thing and it’s second nature to be around them. We know a bit more about them and what it’s like to live on one. Last survey day we knew hardly anything about them except that we wanted one. And we got one.

Then we got another one.

Detlef and Barry arrived and spent about 1 1/2 hours going over Runaway in her berth, then she was moved to the marina’s travel lift so she could be hauled out. While Detlef and Alan moved the boat we walked back with Barry and were so heartened when he gave a glowing opinion of Runaway. We learnt that her fiberglass hull had been hand laid and as a result was incredibly strong and well made. A big relief to know as moving away from the strength steel was causing mild anxiety.  We learnt that Barry thought she was an exceptionally good little boat for her age and price, one of the best boats he’d inspected.

Watching a boat being hauled out and rolled back over land is always a bit nerve wracking but under Alan’s watchful eye the marina crew did a great job and got her lifted safely. Then comes the next uncomfortable bit, watching Barry bash all over the hull with his hammer checking it’s integrity and listening for any change in sound his thumps produce.

Barry inspecting hull

There was some small blister repairs but other than that she was in really good condition.  Back in the water and off for a sea trial in conditions that could be best described as flat.

We didn’t care though, this was our first experience with Runaway in motion and it was lovely. She has a full keel and hydraulic steering so she handles differently to Tygress but she handles well. There wasn’t much wind but we got the sails up which is always a magical experience and we floated very slowly around the bay. Too soon our time was up and we headed back in and the survey day was over. The day had left us buoyed and excited and ready to sign on the dotted line.

 

Don't we look happy?

Don’t we look happy?

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Pre-heat the Oven

Posted in: Featured on Saturday, May 23rd, 2015
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These are no longer depressing words to find at the start of delicious recipes!

If all goes to plan I will soon have my very own oven. I understand if you don’t jump for joy but excuse me while I do.

For the last three years aboard Tygress we’ve had only a two burner Lido Junior gas stove and grill to play with, I mean slave over, in the galley. And as you know we’ve managed quite well but it has been limiting. We packed probably more recipe books than we needed when we first moved aboard without realising just how many of them relied on having an oven. There have been many occasions when Ben and I have felt the urge to shake up our menu options and try masterchefing something new. We’d fish out the recipe books full of enthusiasm, it didn’t help we’d usually be doing this hungry, and we’d come across deliciously tempting recipes only to read further and find the dreaded phrase ‘pre-heat the oven’. After a while of pre-heating a magical oven we didn’t have books were slammed shut and stuffed back in the cupboard. “Steak and mash” Ben would ask? “Yep, you do the steak, I’ll do the mash”. No one ever gets sick of my amazing mashed potatoes, cream, butter, cheese and when i’m getting a little bit fancy, whipped with an electric beater into fluffy clouds of deliciousness…okay so maybe my waistline gets a little sick of them! But seriously folks they’re great.

Now, with the very exciting prospect of having my own oven again I’ve have fun compiling a top five list of the things i’m going to cook in it.

1. Lasagne 

Who doesn’t love a home cooked lasagne. I’ve only made one once before and yes it is a lot of work and mess, but when you slice down through that golden cheesy, crusty top layer to find the delicious mince and bechamel filling all the mess and effort seem like nothing. Served with a crisp salad, or a side of more lasagne it’s one of my favourite meals.

Lasagne

2. Bread

Why bother when I can walk up the road and buy a loaf? Well because I won’t always be able to walk up the road to buy a loaf and there is something deeply satisfying about the smell of bread baking. Homemade bread is an event for the senses unlike the thin white aerated impostor on the shop shelves. Home made bread gets sliced thick while still warm with butter melting dreamily into it. It gets eaten on it’s own because it doesn’t need anything else.  And I know I can work some cheese into the recipe, ooo and maybe some bacon on top! Cheesy bacon bread anyone?

Bread

3. Chips

Handmade, homemade, individually hand cut and all the frozen types too, basically any type of chip you can put in an oven will be going into mine (except maybe those hipster zucchini or kale chips, way to ruin chips guys!). Mmmm I can smell them cooking now.  There’ll be chicken salt, onion and garlic salt and regular salt. There’ll be aioli and tomato sauce. There’ll be me suffering from indigestion after eating too many chips. Totally worth it!

oven-baked-chips

 4. Roast Lamb, beef and chicken

Ben loves to cook a good roast and the only way he’s been able to do that on board is in our little magma bbq in the cockpit. It gets the job done but it’s difficult to judge temperature and cooking times and just a pain to find roasts and trays the right size. So one of our first dinners aboard our new home will no doubt be a roast of some kind. What a luxury to be able to take it out the oven and put it on the bench, without having to worry about getting it out the bbq or losing it over the side in the process. Or having to navigate the companionway with a hot roast and no hands.

Roast Lamb image

5. Baked goodies of every kind

I was never a huge baker before boat life but more and more over the years i’ve really missed being able bake a cake, or some biscuits or some quadruple choc muffins.

https://www.flickr.com/photos/91837455@N00/3533129731

If you’re lucky enough to have an oven, what is your favourite thing to cook in it? Do you have any oven based recipes you’d like to share?

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Boat Shopping Sucks

Posted in: Buying on Saturday, May 16th, 2015

A strong statement I know, but it’s true.

For me personally I find it very hard. It’s an emotional and at times heart breaking roller coaster.

Hours are spent online pouring over hundreds of photos and listings.

A shortlist of practical options develops alongside a much longer wishlist of dream boats (commonly referred to as boat porn). There are so many things to consider. I like some boats, Ben prefers others, and occasionally we both like the same one and it gets added to the shortlist.

The boats listed with brokers benefit hugely from professional photos taken by brokers with their magic cameras, that add space and light. First time boat buys beware, the space and light isn’t always there! The privately listed boats suffer from very average photos taken by owners with their very normal cameras that make spaces look smaller and pokier than they are.  Photos like these make it hard to figure out the layout of the boat and struggle to raise enthusiasm levels. Don’t get me wrong, boat interiors are very hard to photograph and I would not like to rely on my skills when Tygress goes up for sale! You have to look past the quality of the photos and find the real quality of the boat. Read the listing carefully, request more photos if needed, get as much information as you can. Its so important to inspect any boat that catches your eye.

For me the inspection process is the most exciting and also the hardest part. It’s the part of the process when you get to step onto the boats you like and get a feel for them. It’s when the emotions really kick in.

Marina Boardwalk Vintage

We live aboard our boat so the boat shopping process for us is twofold. We want to buy a boat that will allow us to reach our sailing dreams, it has to be able to get us to the places we want to go, and we also want to buy a boat that is going to be good to live aboard. A boat with the right mix can be hard to find and it can be heartbreaking to find a boat with great live aboard qualities that we have to walk away from because of practical considerations.  Part of this twofold process involves picturing our life aboard each new boat to see if it would work for us. I imagine cooking in the galley, sleeping in the cosy berth, and spending lazy days in the cockpit reading. It doesn’t take long to get attached to the life imagined and the boat you imagine living it in. Heartbreak follows when you have to walk away.

So far this search there have been boats that have been a great price, that have had so much space and great live aboard qualities (read; a large, unbelievably comfortable leather settee) but that have simply had too much work to do (read: rust, rust and more rust). Which explains the great price part.

We have found others that have everything we could want in both live aboard and practical categories but that upon some deep thought, were really to big of a jump in size for our current experience levels. But oh how we loved the huge saloon settee that could seat 6-7 comfortably, we loved the roomy and fully enclosed cockpit, and we were seriously impressed with her 1000 litre water tanks and massive deck storage lockers! Sadly though, at over 41′ she was just too much boat for us and her ongoing expenses were daunting.

There was a boat we had discounted online as her interior didn’t appeal to us, I make no apologies that interior aesthetics are a big deal for me, so the lime green galley and 70’s tiles in the head were off putting. But we looked at her on a whim during a day of inspections and she had been weirdly tempting. Yes the lime green galley colour was bad but the space itself was quite functional and offered a good size pantry, which would mean no more rifling through multiple storage lockers wondering where’d i’d shoved the sugar last (Note to self: stop shoving things in random places!). And yes the tiles in the head were no less deeply retro in person than they had been in the pictures but the head itself was much nicer and roomier than we expected. Although she was priced attractively and a good size for us to handle, in the end it was the work still required that made her unsuitable. Our next boat will be ‘no work required’.

Which is why we put in an offer on a boat that is truly just ‘provision and go’. Our boat search, short lived as it was, is happily over.

 

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A Day on La Rose

Posted in: Featured on Tuesday, May 5th, 2015
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It was one of those perfect Moreton Bay days, with clear blue skies, mild temperatures and just enough wind to make raising a sail worth the effort.

We weren’t going to waste it.

Our friend and neighbour John invited us out for a sail on his boat ‘La Rose’, a beautiful Nantucket. It didn’t feel great leaving Tygress in her berth but a day on the bay on any boat is not something you pass up, besides she had Fluffy for company.

The breeze didn’t pick up until after lunch so in the morning we motored out of the channel and turned the bow towards St Helena Island. Most liveaboards don’t own a boat built for speed, we own what are generally referred to as cruising yachts, slower but built for comfort. Built for the journey as much as the destination. So what followed was a very peaceful and delightfully slow trip past Green Island in the direction of St Helena.

 

The chart for the area we sailed.

The chart for the area we sailed. Green and St Helena Islands are up the top right corner and our home port is bottom middle.

 

Ben and I had never been so close to St Helena, it was exciting to watch the indistinct horizon form into sights we could clearly identify. Through binoculars and the camera lens we could make out the ruins on the island. For 60 years onwards from 1867 St Helena was the site of colonial Queensland’s major prison, although the last prisoner left in 1933 thanks to the islands national park status the ruins are still there to see and explore through guided tours.  We were happy enough sailing past and enjoying the view from a distance.

 

St Helena and it's prison ruins.

St Helena and it’s prison ruins.

 

Entranced by the view we almost ran out of water, so we turned around and headed for a lunch stop at Green Island. Safely and expertly anchored I offered to prepare a lunch of roast chook on bread rolls. Simple fare yes, but what a place to prepare it, at a table with 360 water views and almost complete quiet. We weren’t that far from shore but the silence, when jet ski’s or motorboats aren’t roaring past that is, is almost perfect.  We ate, we talked and we waited for the wind.

 

Green Island off the portside, we had it almost to ourselves.

Green Island off the portside, we had it almost to ourselves.

 

Not long after lunch it came, not much, but enough wind came for us to set out and raise the sails.  Most motor boat owners will never understand the joy of turning off the engine and moving under the silent power of sail. For them it’s all ‘powerrrr’ and speed. But for sailors, the power of the wind is ancient, it’s free and it speaks to their soul.

 

Not much wind but we weren't in a hurry

Not much wind but we weren’t in a hurry

We were probably going even slower than we were under power but we didn’t care, we had no where to be other than in the moment. We headed toward King Island talking about boats, enjoying patches of silence and then back to boats again. John has lived aboard for almost 15 years, he has owned a few different boats and has many stories to tell. He has the kind of salty mind that unsalted, inexperienced sailors like to pick through for any pearls of wisdom, experience and ‘what not to do’s’ that they can glean. And if you like boats then spending an afternoon on one, talking about them with a fellow boatie is heaven afloat.

To top off our wonderful day on the bay John popped over to our boat, after an extremely frantic tidy up, and we spent a few hours drinking and trawling through boatsales.com and yachthub.com for our next boat! Life is good!

 

Captain John of La Rose and me.

Captain John of La Rose and me.

 

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We’re still here…

Posted in: Uncategorized on Tuesday, December 2nd, 2014

Never fear dear, loyal, patient, neglected readers, we are still here.

Life is being a harsh mistress of late. Between the daily requirements of boat life, planning a wedding and working to pay for rapidly approaching wedding we’re left with very little time.

And thanks to the rapidly approaching wedding part, very little sanity either!

Source: https://www.etsy.com/au/listing/159831762/navy-wedding-anchors-away-wedding-cake?ref=market

Yes, you read correctly! For those who don’t know, we’re getting married in a little over two months!

2 MONTHS!!!

I am totally not having multiple stress related freak outs a day. I’m completely fine!

I mean there’s only the ceremony wording to finalise, entertainment to sort out, reception styling to agree on, cars to book, continue arguing about whether or not we’re having a photo booth, oh and the invites to send out.

So our apologies go out to all who check our blog only to find nothing new has been posted, and to those readers who take the time to comment and haven’t had a response yet. Please stick with us as we promise to get the blog back on track soon.

I'll just leave this here...

I’ll just leave this here…

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In the bag

Posted in: Boat Improvements, Featured on Sunday, July 20th, 2014
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Our mainsail is now safely tucked away in it’s nice new navy sail bag, safe from water, UV rays and swallow infestations.

The old bag was deteriorating when we bought Tygress but the high winds of ex tropical cyclone Oswald finished it off, completely ripping the canvas away from the zipper and destroying other sections in large chunks. It’s been held together with rope ever since.  Not only did the ratty old bag give Tygress a slightly unloved look it was exposing our main sail to wind, rain and sun.

New Sail Cover

We engaged the services of G & S Marine Trimmers, our local trimmers here at the marina and once again we are extremely happy with the finished work.

Gary taking the old sail canvas off

Gary removing our deteriorating old grey sail bag.

The new sail bag marks the completion of the canvas replacement on Tygress and we love how she looks now. We may be biased, but we think she looks very smart with her red hull and navy canvas.

 

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