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If you’ve read my previous blog you’ll know we were up to boat stuff yesterday. Helen did a great job on some cosmetic sealing as some of the seals around the boat were looking a little grubby. You have an idea of what I was up to. One thing I spent time on was testing the AIS transceiver. When we were out, about the only thing I was disappointed in was not seeing Dignity on When I got down to testing, I noticed that just in the harbor here there were seven vessels putting out an AIS position but only one showed on the website. I managed to get a quick positive test from Anthem who could see us loud and clear. The most likely reason is something to do with the port receiver here which is either not receiving and/or communicating positions of all the vessels out here. Oh well – no geeky fun to be had. At least I know the transponder works.

In the afternoon we had a visit from Peter Cronk who bought Lagoon 420 hull #26 around the same time we bought Dignity. We’ve been in touch with him over the last 7 years and met him for the first time yesterday. He was one of the folks giving Helen tremendous support while I was seriously ill. He’d even offered to sail the boat over from Fiji but was understandably glad he hadn’t. It was great to finally meet him and thank him in person for everything he’s done.

Shortly after Peter left, Ed and Cornelia from A Cappella arrived to take us out to dinner. We went back the nearby Chinese restaurant and had a very pleasant evening together.

Back to my rant from yesterday. Have I calmed down? Yes. Am I more sympathetic? No. Calling out faults that simply don’t exist is deceitful. Completely misidentifying parts of the boat is simply incompetent. Just one error like this implies the surveyor had, at best, a broken/faulty process which exposes everyone involved to harm. Bad, bad, bad.

What’s done is done. Moving forward we can learn some lessons. For our next trial we will have someone aboard who will make sure the surveyor points out all the faults they are going to list in their report and to make notes of each issue. If the surveyor later adds anything we simply won’t accept it. I’ve wasted too much time on this. If I were the previous potential buyers I would want my money back. If I were the surveyor I would be ashamed and either improving the way I work or looking for a different profession.

Back to the Marina

We had another lazy morning in before readying to depart the anchorage just before midday. The Jacksters did stop by as we had a bit more dive gear for them so another round of goodbyes were had.

The wind was in the high teens to low 20s and ahead of us so we were on a close haul all the way back. We put two reefs in the main and headsail as we knew we would be close to and indeed the apparent wind was occasionally as high as 30 knots though mainly in the low 20s. Again we were against the current as we left earlier than before and low tide was now nearly 3 hours later than before. Despite this we easily averaged over 7 knots over ground (over 8 through the water) and later were doing 8-9 knots over ground around low tide.

We passed west of Mud Island and then had to tack 12 times to sail into port. I loved it. Helen did too, sort of. After a while she wanted to motor in rather than keep tacking so she could clean the boat. I did not give in to this as this could well be our last sail and I was where I wanted to be.

In the end we made it back with time to spare. At the dock we were met by Niel from Attitude, Jan from Anthem, Cornelia from A Cappella and Don from Freezing rain who all stood by to help with lines. With 20 knot winds squeezing into the dock next to Attitude was a little challenging. I aborted early the first attempt and nailed it the second time. Piece of cake.

View 2012-12-12 Moreton Bay in a larger map

In the evening Sam came over. We went out for a buffet curry in Manly and were later joined by Rob from Bristol Rose who happened by by chance. We ended the evening walking with Sam to the railway station then returning to the boat when his train arrived.

Now we’re back in the marina and back connected is back to our admin. We have one or two viewings coming up this weekend so want to be ready for those.

For your entertainment here is a video taken by one of the brokers and some pics of our time in the bay.

YouTube Preview Image

Thanksgiving Weekend

Friday ended up a bit of a chore day. A lot of communications were required with the broker involved with the recent near sale. I am not yet ready to share the nature of these conversations as a little more time is needed to determine if it’s good or bad.

Friday evening we were joined by Sam. Helen had cleaned and packed the rest of his stuff as he has found a cheap and secure place in town. It was nice to spend time with him.

On Saturday we drove down to Trish and Rob’s home in Tumbulgum to join the crowd from Anthem, Inspiration Lady and A Cappella for a slightly delayed Thanksgiving Dinner complete with turkey, ham and all sorts of veg.

Trish and Rob are now CLODs (Cruisers Living On the Dirt). And what a fine piece of dirt they have. Set on 60 acres of land their home is idyllic. Much of the land is woodland with plenty of flower gardens. Their 11 year old home was built in a rustic style sitting on the hill with fine views across the valley.

We had our Thanksgiving dinner early afternoon and spent the evening chatting and playing cards. My swelling in my trachea and esophagus had become painful again so in the morning I tried half a dexamethasone tablet. I think it helped my symptoms but it certainly got me a bit euphoric. I chatted far too much. But at least I maxed every card hand I played. My side effects from the RT should peak soon and after then I can expect things to improve naturally.

The next day the other visitors left leaving Helen and I with Trish and Rob. I spent a few hours fixing our camera flash which had got jammed as a result of a recent accident. Their home felt like our home. We needed the escape.

Later, Rob and Trish took us around their property showing us many things not at first obvious. It was all very interesting and amazingly tranquil. It felt like walking around walking around private gardens / a private estate, which is unsurprising as that is what they’ve got.

After this we headed to the coast to where Rob spent time in his youth. A place called Fingle. We bought fish and chips and ate the at a small park by the ocean in the company of some of Australia’s amazing birds. We then walked along the beach and then along a path behind to where there was a rock formation aptly name the Giant’s Causeway.

Helen retired early in the evening leaving Trish, Rob and I chatting til late.

Despite intending to leave early in the morning, we eventually ended up heading back to Brisbane just before midday. We took a long way back to see the sights.

Back on the boat we finally got back in contact with the gas man who will be round tomorrow to bring our galley up to Ozzy standards. Communications with the broker resumed with mixed results.

This evening we had a left over turkey curry followed by a TV show. Great.

Party Time

About 2 hours after my last blog entry I finally managed some sleep. I couldn’t stop thinking of things to now do both for moving forward with selling Dignity and the rest of our lives. I didn’t sleep long and was soon back at it. One of the big frustrations I am having is getting the gas certification done for the appliances we have. I’ve been told so many things by so many people my head sometimes feels like it’s going to explode. If it did, I might make a radioactive mess.

Shortly before 6pm our friends, who’d beat the weather window down here, all arrived to join us aboard. Suddenly it was just like the old times. We blasted through cruisers’ midnight with ease with most folks heading home around 10:30pm. It was nice to have the usual boating chat (sea stories and whatnot) and of course share our experiences with my health, the dismasting and with selling the boat. A great had by all. With us were Jack and Jan from Anthem, Gary and Jackie from Inspiration Lady, Ed and Cornelia from A Cappella, Steve & Vickie from True Companions and Rob from Bristol Rose. Take a look at the category links to see some, but probably not all, of our interactions with these good friends of ours.

This morning we both got down to work. We’ve now rescheduled our trip up to the Sunshine Coast to spend Tuesday and Wednesday night with Ella and Granddaughter Bau. And the whole of Wednesday. We’re really looking forward to their company.

Helen did her detailed cleaning of the boat. I pulled apart all the gas fittings and took a load of photos so I could be better positioned to understand the ragged bunch of gas fitters, inspectors and government officials that circle around us. The admin continues. We’ve sold off a few more items from the boat which will allow us to buy a few more packets of crisps.

This afternoon I suddenly came over immensely fatigued. I’ve been running so high on anticipation, excitement, challenge and drugs for the last few days I think I basically got run over by the truck of tiredness. A couple of hours of interrupted rest and I was back going again. Sam’s arriving soon and we’ll be having quality time together this evening. In the morning it’s off to see most of the same friends again for a delayed turkey dinner at Trish and Rob’s home.

We’ve had time to reflect on the first offer good enough for us to accept on the boat and what subsequently transpired. Our thoughts haven’t changed much since yesterday. Although we have our opinions I don’t think it fair to comment on the other parties as, if nothing else, we still like them. For our part we now feel we got too wrapped up in the ‘story’ of our finishing our life aboard Dignity and handing her over to a couple starting their own. We became too emotionally attached which brought a few tears to Helen’s eyes when it was clear the deal was off. Not for the loss of the sale, but for the failure of the story to emerge. When we sold our home in New Jersey back in 2008 to start our adventure we took the emotion off the table. It worked very well. We’ve taken the lesson.

Last day in Savusavu

In the morning we went ashore to clear out and buy some fresh veg. On the way back to the boat we stopped off at a few friends to say goodbye. Amongst those we met were Gary from Inspiration Lady, George and Claudia from Dreamtime, David & Jackie from Jackster, Petr from Endless, Bruce & Alane from Migration, Paul & Maurine from Callypso and Ed & Cornelia from A Cappella. It’s amazing how many folks we know here in the creek at Savusavu. Everyone asked how I’m feeling which is a little better than before. Some progress.

Helen and I stayed on the boat for the rest of the day. Sam went ashore a couple of times to hang out with some of the folks he’s met. He returned the second time around 10:30pm. His arrival woke me up so I went upstairs and chatted with him for a while.

Today we head west on our first leg to Lautoka. I have 5 legs plotted which we’ll more or less follow.