Showing posts from July, 2017

Thursday Island - 10° 35' 36" S 142° 14' 36" E

Punishing.  Unrelenting.  Wearing.  Exhausting. A turtle watches us go by Our journey from Darwin started calmly (as we expected) by making our way though the calm waters north and east of Darwin's harbour.  We left mid-morning in blue skies and light winds.   Gord had flown in from Canada and we were VERY happy to see how well he had handled the jet lag from 24 hours of travel.  His constitution was solid, with no signs of seasickness.  As a sign of good luck for the journey ahead, we even spotted a sea turtle lounging in afternoon sun as we cruised through the calm waters of Van Diemen Gulf. Melville Island to the north meant that the first 12 hours of our journey were sheltered from the sea swell. Shortly after night fell, we left Van Diemen Gulf and rounded the mainland into Arafura Sea - 2 - 3 metre swells and 20 - 25 knots of wind ... straight at us. Bang, bang, bang went the boat as the bow crested the swells and then smacked down into the trough with 13 tonnes of

Cullen Bay Marina - 12° 27' 05" S 130° 49' 23" E

After three months in Indonesia, mostly in the more remote and less developed areas, we were well conditioned to the limited offerings of the shops and stalls and markets.  We became accustomed to being unable to buy fresh dairy, having our purchases covered with a layer of dust.  A rat or cockroach scurrying across the floor barely caused us to raise an eyebrow. Walking into Woolworths (Woolies) for the first time in Darwin, we were struck by its immensity, bright lights and clinical cleanliness.  Even better, it was filled with all sorts of goodies that had been unavailable to us for months.  The range of products dazzled in both variety and breadth of options.  Sixteen choices of eggs, an aisle of washing powder options, all glittering and gleaming in their brightly coloured boxes and packages.  Oh, and the packaging!  Have the fruit and vegetables always had this much packaging?  The meats were all neatly laid out on polystyrene trays - a far cry from the wooden chopping block at

Thursday Is... wait ... DARWIN? - 12° 27' 43" S 130° 50' 35" E

Hey, that's not Thursday Island! We have arrived safely in Australia but to Darwin rather than Thursday Island.  This was not an error in navigation but at the insistence of the crew (who just happens to own the boat)! Poor Craig became rather green and insisted on calmer waters! The fish were very well fed.  Figuring that he would become very dehydrated, we changed course and headed to Darwin. Once we stopped bashing into the sea and wind, it was much calmer and he made a slow recovery.  By the time we were weaving our way between the Tiwi Islands, he was positively perky and servicing winches and completing other boat jobs.  We were all pretty happy to drop anchor in Fannie Bay (yep, still chuckling at the name). We hope you can get all the springs back into that winch, Craig. Yay!  We made it to Australia... Entering Australia is quite an exercise, particularly if you had notified the Australian Border Force that you are entering in a different location.  Once w