Thursday, 13 August 2015

One of Those Days!

Along the Burnett River, Bundaberg
Our anchorage at Big Woody Island (Tooliewah) off Fraser Island is just thirteen miles away.  It's warm and sunny and the water of Hervey Bay is calm, aquamarine.  We were surprised to see a dugong about twenty miles out although this area is known for them.

The day started in the Burnett River, with very calm conditions after a blustery 25-30 knot day yesterday until around 10pm, when a cold front came through.  There was enough rain to wash down the boat, nice.  We slept well last night and this morning decided today is the day to leave for Fraser Island.  There will be some swell but the wind direction will suit our southeasterly course.

Just as we're coming in to the fuel dock at Bundaberg Port Marina, the winds pick up again from 5 to 15 knots.  Once out in the bay it looks like we could have a brisk sail flying just the yankee this morning.

At 10am the Bureau of Meteorology cancelled the strong wind warning.  All is well when I decide to make an early lunch of fried rice. We're on a nice even keel.  As luck would have it, or not, when I have everything out on the bench and in the midst of slicing and dicing, the wind picks up to 25 knots, peaking at 30.  We are smashing into waves at six knots, salt spray flying the length of the boat.

Having only two arms and two hands, and a couple of legs, I strapped myself in the galley and adjusted my ambitions and chopping skills to meet the heel of the boat.  A rice-strewn galley and two decent sized bowls of fried rice later I dragged myself into the cockpit, only to witness at that moment a dramatic decrease in wind strength.  Talk about a bad sense of timing!  At least the eating position is a lot more vertical than the cooking position.  We're still making some headway and life is good again.

We use our 3 water tanks in rotation.  I filled the two empty ones at the fuel dock earlier so I'll switch over to the biggest aft tank now.  I filled it back in Rosslyn Bay and we've had it in reserve.  Huh?  There must be a lot of air in the pipes, it's taking a while for the water to flow freely.  Robert takes a look and we figure out we've drained the aft tank over the course of the past two weeks.  The valve has not been completely closed and the water slowly drained into the tank in use.

We've been assuming we've improved our efforts at conserving water because we've only just emptied the smaller forward tank.  That plus the supreme confidence we left Bundaberg with 3 full tanks, well, I'm remembering now what AssUMe means.  Running out of one of the three essentials, fuel, food, or water would severely restrict our movements.  Now we will really need to watch the water usage until the next opportunity to refill.

We're sailing along nicely after lunch.  It's time for a hot drink.  What is up with this gas jet?  It's been playing up a bit lately.  It won't work at all now.  I keep the stovetop spotlessly clean and the gas jet seems clean.  We think we need to replace the regulator.  I give up.  I'll sit in the sun and drink water.  But I won't let this thing beat me.  A bit of poking at the jet, a wipe, a readjustment and hey presto, all jets firing.  I must remember to apologise to the helpful brother-in-law who suggested cleaning the outlet jet.

I'll take something out of the freezer for dinner.  Those couple of fish fillets will be great for fish cakes.  What the heck?  This fish is almost defrosted and I thought the freezer had been working so well.  There's no knowing for how long, but the switch has been set at fridge instead of freezer.  Something must have bumped the switch from 4 to 2.  The contents are still frozen enough that we won't loose all the frozen food we need until the next opportunity to provision.  I dare not look at anything else.  I'm afraid it's not my day.

Around 2pm the wind completely dies, just like that!  From too much to nothing. We'd ideally like to anchor before dark.  Now we're motoring.  It's the 13th of the month.  It's a Thursday.  I'm a Thursday's Child with a long way to go.  At least it's a warm, sunny afternoon.  Life is indeed good, but I gotta say...  It's been just one of those days!

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