Holiday spirit

Miss Molly 4
Bob & Peggy Wilkerson/Geoff & Merel Pettifer
Fri 22 Apr 2011 10:42
31:08.21 S

Hello all,

We have spent the last couple of days inside the big bay of Port Stephens waiting for the wind. However days went past and there was still no wind forecasted nor would be for another few days in that area so we decided to make the move on this Good Friday. Yes, we left port on a Friday, despite being slightly superstitious about that. It was one of our early departures, we were under way at 5 a.m. while it was still dark. We were not alone out there as it was a public holiday and the Australians do not have to get back to work until Wednesday. Lots of little fishing boats were already whizzing about. One really got us: it's port and starboard navigation lights were the wrong way round! Quite confusing, but at least we realized that we did not suffer from bad eye sight.

The rewards of getting up early came pretty soon: a beautiful sunrise followed by a few dolphins swimming past. It was a very sunny day and we even started out with a bit of current pushing us ahead. We had to keep dodging groups of small fishing boats. One group was near a huge school of small fish that got chased through the water. There were also divers in the water there, so we wondered if they caused the chase or were just witnessing it from nearby. Lots of happy holiday anglers were waving from their fishing boats at Miss Molly. But the best wave came from a humpback whale. We had to slow down for the blowing whale which was crossing our bow about 4 boat lengths away. It then did a deep dive, showing its tail. Normally that's the end of it. But this whale surfaced again to do another dive with a tail wave. Awesome!

In the afternoon everything changed. The wind little that was around turned on the nose and so did the current and both seem to intensify. That makes our arrival time in the next planned port on the border of New South Wales and Queensland somewhere in the morning. We will have to see if things improve, but so far it looks as if we will give that port a miss and keep going, rather than sleeping the day away after arrival. Also as tomorrow's forecast promises us some wind. Not that the forecast has been up to much lately.

At least the sun stayed with us until it was time for it to go under. It gets dark before 6 p.m. and it is now evening. for hours we have been watching the distant electrical storm to our Southeast slowly come nearer. Let's hope it does not have to come over us to get the forecasted wind, the crew is not that delighted about this type of light shows. There is not much we can do about it so we will just have to live with it.

Cheers from your crew,
Geoff & Merel