We have been away now for 20 weeks, reaching The Whitsunday’s 10 weeks ago. While we haven’t planned every stopover and how long we were going to stay at each, we have surprised ourselves that we have stayed here for this long. But, this is truly a beautiful part of Australia and sharing it with family and friends was always part of the plan.
We had some boating friends on board a few nights back. The conversation between yachties this time of the year is all about heading south. We have had steady (and strong) SE trade winds for weeks now with no sign of northerlies. So when MetEye shows us anything with a N in it, we will be heading south. Along with hundreds of other boats. No lonely anchorages along the way.
Heading south also signals the end of our visitors. We have shared our journey with family (F) and friends (F) – Tim & Abbey (chn), sister Joanne, friends Lynn & Greg and Andree & Steve.
Tim and Abbey are very familiar with boats, having grown up with our yachts. This time round they enjoyed the added comforts of our Fusion 40. Whether it be chilling, reading, swimming, snorkelling or cooking, Abbey is easy to please. Tim takes on the role of Captain pretty quickly, astounded that we ‘old folk’ could ever manage on our own! And sister Joanne … we always enjoy her gourmet meals and her enthusiasm for everything the Whitsunday’s has to offer (well, maybe not the snake).
Friends Lynn and Greg joined us on passage from Great Keppel Island to the Whitsunday’s. Fishing, cooking (my pressure cooker teachers) and cards were highlights. But revisiting the places that we visited in 1987 with them and making new memories this time was really the highlight.
Andree and Steve joined us for 11 days. Andree has followed our boating dreams forever, Steve was the newbie. Steve very quickly picked up that the days pass quickly and that the Whitsunday’s are a touch of paradise. They enjoyed calm weather and special visits from the resident turtle at Stonehaven.
We sailed the first 12 or so weeks without family or friends so we relied on each for conversation … and the ‘others’ (O). Many people presumed that this journey could be quite a lonely one. But it hasn’t been the case at all. Between family and friends from home and catching up with other boat friends – Easy Tiger, Bacolana, Fire Of Spring and Aqualibrium – we have had a very social time.
I am writing this blog post anchored in a relatively calm Nara Inlet (a safe haven for yachties). We have had 10 days of strong 20-35 knot winds and rain and we are all a bit over it. We have rocked and rolled several nights. Bullets of wind have peppered the anchorages all day and night. Anchor Watch working overtime.
The sun is now shining and those bumpy nights are usually forgotten very quickly. Where are we off to tomorrow?
PS. A few people have asked about how they can comment on my ramblings … if you click the title of the post you are reading, it will take you directly to that particular post’s page and at the bottom of the page you will find a “Comment” section. Or, go directly to the Track Us page and you will find the same “Comment” section at the bottom of the page. Very clumsy I know. Will talk to my techno guru!
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