|EAST COAST GIRL MEETS THE COFFS HARBOUR “ASSASSIN”
Walking back to the berth, I could hear some guy sounding off to someone else about the shared electricity plug system. When I approached he singled me out with a tirade of abuse. He told me I had no right to park my boat next to his berth. He believed I had removed his electricity plug. He also accused me of touching his boat.
John came on deck (he is the one who fiddled with the plugs) the guy continued to abuse me. He said “he would get his brothers down to fixup us up”. The funny side is, he could have easily fixed us up himself judging by his size. So why did he need his brothers to help? He pointed to me and said look at my boat name. Tongue in cheek I said “Bertram” the boat brand name, he said “its called the ASSASSIN”.
We set up our security guard “Jake” the snake to warn us of his approach. We also needed inspiration and I dug out our Joshua Slocum flag.
We had continuing problems with our GPS, John's solution was simple.
We quitely slipped our moorings and left for Mooloolaba. Some cunning intelligence from Alan revealed the entrance to the marina was silted up and we had to wait a couple of hours until the tide flooded. He knew this because someone ran-a-ground the day before. Local knowledge always counts for a lot.
I kept kidding John that every motor boat we saw on the horizon was the Assassin and his brothers coming to take revenge.
WHALES AND TOP SAILING CONDITIONS
A pod of about five whales crept up behind us. So much for our 360 degree watch, one surfaced close enough to touch, he soon vanished below. Later I was woken to take my turn at watch by Alan and steer for the next three hours.
The sky was full of stars, the sea was flat and ECG was soon registering over 10 knots. I marveled, the young lass dancing on the waves. When John came on watch at 4.00 AM, he had to prise me from the wheel. A tired and happy sailor went to bed full of dreams.
The following morning we breakfasted off Byron Bay lighthouse. I ate Weetbix, toast with Rocotta cheese and Golden syrup plus coffee. We had our sea legs at last !!!!!!!!!!! No more COB.
The next few hours proved frustrating with light variable winds. That evening off the Gold Coast the winds increased and came from the SW, the area is shallow this adds to make choppy confused seas. We guessed some gusts were well over 30 – 35 knots.
Alan and John gamely went forward to reduce the main sail and make sailing more manageable. The night was cold and wet, especially if one was steering, spray just spumed over the helmsman at regular intervals. Coming on watch John asked me if he needed his wet weather pants. One look at me and he went back down to put them on.
Late the next morning we rounded Cape Moreton, Alan could see his house at Buderim on top of the mountains. The skipper was sleeping, well I had seen the Cape before twice. I just missed a load of fishing trawlers anchored at the Cape a rare sight. I also missed the trawler run-a-ground at the entrance to Mooloolaba . We arrived at Kawana Marina a happy crew, Alan’s wife arrived on the dock and we got stuck into my Stepmother’s Spaghetti Bolognaise with a good bottle of red wine.
Due to excess sea water in Alans berth at the front of the boat. He hot bedded with John. One morning he came on deck with a black eye. I joined him some days later falling out of the same bunk.