Monday 21 October 2013

15 Miles off Woollongong, NSW

Like an opera in 3 Acts, the return voyage  from Pt Vila is now entering its final performance.  Action to date has seen skipper Bob lead the main return leg across the Tasman Sea to Coffs Harbour and then the two day hop down to Sydney; which was completed this morning.

And it was in Sydney that Bob said farewell… back to his loving and ever-patient Bev.  After 5 weeks aboard it was also where crewmembers David and Sally said farewell, catching the 3:00pm flight home to Melbourne.

Everyone’s contribution has been fantastic, along with the other delivery crew Carl and Cameron.

To deliver Chimere home to her berth at the Westernport Marina we now have skipper Rob, (me) plus past volunteer crewmember Tony Owens and two of his Melbourne sailing buddies, John Walmsley and David Bock. Tony, John and David flew in around lunchtime and after some lunch, last minute shopping and boat familiarisation we undid the lines and drove out of the CYCA around 3:00pm, after just a  7 hour stopover.

back-in-our-usual-berth-at-cyc

Given the wonderful location in Rushcutters Bay, surrounded as it is by beautiful yachts, it’s a place you’d really like to stop and enjoy.  But it’s hometime.  And for the next day, maybe two,  the wind will be blowing our way, before a predicted blow from the West and southwest which looks like setting in for a bit.

At this stage we are focused on the 200 miles south to Eden and once there we’ll assess whether we sit tight and let it all blow over, or we press on and take shelter further on.  It all depends on how far we get with the current wind and exactly when the change hits.

Evidence of the surrounding bushfires is everywhere in the smoky horizon, the red sunset, sunrise and moonrise. as well.

An hour or so back Tony, John and David  retreated to their bunks for some sleep with each due to take their watch through the night.

Rightly enough it was my turn to make dinner, given that I at least know where most things are onboard and the seas have been kind on everyone’s tummies as we get used to the constant motion.

With the moon yet to give an appearance the night is very dark, making the glowing sparkles of phospherecence from the bow wake and spray from Chimere’s parting of th sea look even more spectacular than normal

Smooth seas, fair breeze and in the home stretch

Rob Latimer

www.msm.org.au