Thinning Out

Alongside St Paul Harbor, Kodiak
Weather: overcast, showers, cool

Suuhaa departed today, heading east towards Glacier Bay, where they will turn south, sailing the inside passage to finish their voyaging for the time being in their home port of Vancouver.  During the afternoon I found myself glancing towards the now empty berth and the sense of their absence was palpable. Brad and Tamara are a very friendly, down to earth, outgoing and upbeat couple, always willing to welcome passers by onto their boat for a bit of a gam. Brad has a big laugh and Tamara a frequent shining smile, which, conjoined, lightens and brightens any conversation. I shall miss them.

Meanwhile, Nick and Jenny on Bosun Bird, small in length but big in heart, have nearly completed their preparations for winterising. Bosun Bird will be remaining in Kodiak while her crew heads back to their diplomatic posts with the UN mission in Sudan. They are a thoughtful and intelligent couple.  It has been a real privilege to meet them and to get to know them a little.

Howard and Lorraine, on the far side of the channel, in the other boat harbour,  are similarly winterising their boat Nomzamo in preparation for their return to Tasmania. Unfortunately because of the tyranny of distance, a whole mile of it, we on this side have not seen much of them, but I shall make an effort to go and see them tomorrow.

Despite the challenges and setbacks of our North Pacific cruising, especially while in Japan, this summer's sailing has been memorable. Alaska's land and seascape is stunning, and its people warm, open, and good spirited. Similarly the cruisers one meets up this way share a camaraderie that is absent in the lower warmer latitudes, where there are perhaps too many boats, and life is a little too easy.

Now Sylph will be pushing on into Alaska, as winter approaches, alone. I am looking forward to it.

All is well.