NYE at the marina. I slept like a log. When you are at anchor every little noise wakes you in expectation that something has changed and you are now drifting towards Niagara Falls. In a berth securely tied on three sides I call those little sounds Marina Music and they put me to sleep. But we were into the new year early as there was to be a coordinated arrival of our kids, Nelson from Hong Kong (via Sydney) and Paris from Sydney (via Byron Bay) and friends, Phil and Maryann from Brisbane who were joining us for a day sail.
Thinking of all this is when I put the unleaded petrol into the diesel container. whoops! luckily the groundsman was out early and disposed of my stuffup in the proper manner without too much embarrassment.
They all arrived and after way too much hugging we got sailing straight away before the wind got up. Once around Green Island was enough in 25 knots and then it was back to the comfort of the bar for a shandy. A shandy is 50% lemonade and 50% beer and is the best thirst quencher after sailing! Don’t use that fake light beer though. It’ll just give you a headache and a bad reputation.
After more average pub food in Manly it was back to the boat to work out where four adults were going to sleep. Luckily we were family as it is pretty cosy in a Beneteau 27.7. Nelson is 1.9m tall and he and I can’t stand straight. We spend a lot of time in the companionway looking like out of place giraffes. But it all clicked and we were probably more functionally coordinated then we normally are in a house. You have to be!
The Family - sailing again…
The next day we punched into the wind to head back to One Mile. And since we have sailed together for years (but once again this was a first on our own boat) everything went smoothly. We were going so well we decided to sail around Peel Island instead of through the narrow channel. Some of the best sailing of the trip and apart from a little kerfuffle trying to hove-to in front of the high-speed ferry we were ready to berth at the pontoon. This would be fine except for a very low tide and a 70′ trawler in our spot just picking up some fresh water - 5000L. I thought I would try the old spin-on-a-dime routine in the very narrow shallow channel and met the sandbar. Once again my arse was saved by Paris going below to pump and raise the keel. This is one feature I looked long and hard for in a boat and I am so glad I persisted. The gathering crowd on the dock were very impressed.
Straight out of the Tourism brochure…
After a swim we again explored Dunwich and drank mango and banana smoothies in the shade of the cafe. The restaurant at the end of the universe was closed tonight and the night before the pizza shop had run out of supplies so we got a chance to use the single-burner galley with four people stepping around each other. It takes coordination!