Here comes the sun!

Posted in: Marina Life on Friday, March 8th, 2013

It may not have been a full day of sun but i’m overjoyed to say that for the most part we had a sunny day with blue sky and everything! At least I think it was blue sky, it’s been so long  I was sure I had forgotten what it looked like.

Beautiful blue sky

It’s possibly the most sun we’ve had all March.  I spent more time outside than I have in weeks enjoying the warmth and the relative dryness of everything.

I wasn’t the only one, lot’s of people had come out to enjoy the beautiful weather, including one guy who obviously hasn’t grown out of his love of remote controlled toys.

Great weather for boats of any size to head out for a sail.


Small but graceful.


Out enjoying the sun.


Sunny daze are happy daze indeed!


*click on images to see larger versions


A land of drought and flooding rains..

Posted in: Uncategorized on Wednesday, February 27th, 2013

My Country

Dorothea MacKellar

The love of field and coppice,
Of green and shaded lanes.
Of ordered woods and gardens
Is running in your veins,
Strong love of grey-blue distance
Brown streams and soft dim skies
I know but cannot share it,
My love is otherwise.

I love a sunburnt country,
A land of sweeping plains,
Of ragged mountain ranges,
Of droughts and flooding rains.
I love her far horizons,
I love her jewel-sea,
Her beauty and her terror –
The wide brown land for me!

A stark white ring-barked forest
All tragic to the moon,
The sapphire-misted mountains,
The hot gold hush of noon.
Green tangle of the brushes,
Where lithe lianas coil,
And orchids deck the tree-tops
And ferns the warm dark soil.

Core of my heart, my country!
Her pitiless blue sky,
When sick at heart, around us,
We see the cattle die –
But then the grey clouds gather,
And we can bless again
The drumming of an army,
The steady, soaking rain.

Core of my heart, my country!
Land of the Rainbow Gold,
For flood and fire and famine,
She pays us back threefold –
Over the thirsty paddocks,
Watch, after many days,
The filmy veil of greenness
That thickens as we gaze.

An opal-hearted country,
A wilful, lavish land –
All you who have not loved her,
You will not understand –
Though earth holds many splendours,
Wherever I may die,
I know to what brown country
My homing thoughts will fly.

A land of flooding rains indeed!   While we didn’t face the wild destructive winds and storm surges of Oswald we received just as much rain, if not more over the past 24-48 hours.  Dams have been releasing water, rivers are on flood alert, over 77 roads have been flooded throughout the south east,  and people who lost everything only a few weeks ago were again bracing for another deluge.  (Read more here)

Radar Image as at 25 February 2013



Not to mention the severe tropical cyclone Rusty bearing down on the coast of Western Australia as I type this.


Western Australia Radar Image as at 27 February 2013 showing TC Rusty


Here on Tygress we’ve had consistent rain for almost two days. The weather caught us with a line full of washing which is now soaking wet and hanging heavy on the lines, that tricksy sun lulled us into a false sense of security. A new window leak has developed on the starboard side – yay! Everything inside is starting to feel damp as it does after a lot of rain, wet towels, shoes and clothes are piling up. Soon the boat will start to smell – double yay!. The cat and I are going slightly stir crazy from constant incarceration in this tiny space, forgetting what it’s like to feel the sun on our skin and fur.

I love this ancient land, most Australian do, but boy does it push us to the limits of our courage and strength, both richly rewarding us and punishing us, testing our faith, determination and love with every season.

Right now she’s testing my love with all this bloody rain and the forecast provides little hope of sun with clouds, showers and possible storms predicted over the coming week.  I love you Australia but geez if I wanted weather like this i’d be living in sunny ol’ England!


January – where’d it go?

Posted in: End of Month Recap on Wednesday, February 6th, 2013

Every new year I think to myself  This year is going to go slower, i’m going to live more in the moment and it’s going to feel longer.

But each new year seems to go just as quick as the last year, if not quicker! And as if to prove my point we’re at the end of January already.

Here are some things I did in January.

1. Stacked and re-stacked the fridge about 30 times.

Perfectly packed!


2. Completed the Wynnum 10,000 steps challenge with only two huge blisters, some sunburn and complete exhaustion to show for it.


10,000 steps = 1 bloody long walk!


3. Found some rather sad and neglected looking boats in Wynnum creek, a place we call ‘the boat graveyard’…for obvious reasons.


A sad sight to see


Creative seating solution


4. Went to Bundaberg to join Ben’s family as they returned Pop home to the sea at one of his favourite fishing spots, Coonarr beach.

Pop returning home


5. Sweltered in hot, windless conditions,  during which the ships cat found some adorable positions to try and cool down.


The ships cat trying to sleep and cool down


6. Had a movie day, thanks to a supply of girlie movies from my Mum and a large bottle of home brew scotch from my Dad.


A girlie movie day


7. Ate a whole tub of ice cream, with Ben’s help of  course, well if truth be told he ate most of it.  But he had to, Tygress has no freezer and you can’t waste ice cream!


Ice cream treat.


8. Discovered some interesting new ways to enjoy Bundaberg rum, gotta say I loved the sarsaparilla and Bundy Red combo. My only complaint…the bottles aren’t big enough!


Discovering new ways to enjoy rum


There were of course a few unpleasant events as well

1. Ex tropical Cyclone Oswald came, destroyed and left

2. Found what we think is some rot in the cockpit plywood

If (1) is considered a complete cluster-whoopsie of a month and (10) is considered a month full of happiness, sunshine and success then I would rate January as a 6/10.  How was your January?

Bring on February!


Oswald wreaking havoc

Posted in: Living aboard on Sunday, January 27th, 2013

As I type this Ex tropical cyclone Oswald is bearing down on Brisbane causing flooding, strong winds and general havoc.

I’m sitting on a lean to starboard, the saloon table is vibrating from the forces being applied to the mast and I can barely hear myself think due to the constant groaning of the fenders protecting Tygress as she’s being blown against the dock.

The latest observations from the Bureau of Meteorology are indicating wind speeds of 31kts (57km/hr) with gusts of up to 46kts (85km/hr). Tygress is taking a hammering.

Brisbane radar image as at 6.15pm

And to top it off we’ve just lost power.

This is the worst weather we’ve had since moving aboard and I’m not too proud to say that i’m frightened.  The last time Brisbane experienced weather like this I was safely ensconced behind four strong, solid walls watching the worst of it on the television.  Now I feel like i’m at the mercy of it. It’s not a good feeling.

As for Tygress herself, we fortunately managed to seal her leaking windows yesterday morning with gaffa tape so we’re not having to contend with water in the boat.  The tarps though have had to be tied and retied numerous times today thanks to the cheap rope we’ve been using. We’re slowly learning that only the best will do for our boat, trying to save money by buying cheap rope will only cause problems down the track. With this wind the tarps are acting more like sails and the sound they make when they fly lose is like a cracking whip against the cabin roof.  Our poor little fenders are looking deflated after having Tygress squishing against them for the last few days, one of them even popping out onto the dock, squeezed out under pressure, forcing us to push our bull of a steel hull against the wind to get it back down between the opposing forces of hull and dock again.

The video below is of the harbour entrance at about 3pm today, the poor boats are really getting thrown around, i’m glad we’re further into the marina and relatively protected from the waves.