Tuesday, 12 April 2016

Sailing Around Australia; You Don't Know What You'e Got

13th April 2016

You don't know what you've got till it's gone.

Our sailing adventures began in 2013. We left Perth not really knowing if we'd enjoy the experience, not really knowing where we would end up and not really knowing how long we would go for.

2 and a bit years on and we are really enjoying the experience of cruising sailing. We still don't know where we are going to end up, but at least for the moment we also know we have only two weeks left.

In the past two and a bit years we have only been home a couple of times.  We were settled in Brisbane before Christmas to sit out the cyclone season further north, when we found some cheap fares and flew home to WA for a visit.

Our timing was impeccable. We got to attend a niece's 21st and a friend's 60th birthday celebrations.We were able to spend Leanne's fathers 80th birthday with him.  We stayed with my Mum who had not been well and as fortune would have it, we spent some time with my Dad at the nursing home he lived in. This was especially good timing as he passed away 5 days later.

My Dad's passing brought real meaning to our mantra of live life well while you can. He had a stroke at the age of 59 that robbed him of his ability to work, or participate fully in many of the pastimes he enjoyed, like golf and bowls. He had several more strokes, each robbing him of independence until we were forced to put him in the car of a nursing home. I used to almost feel guilty when regaling our stories of sailing adventures and the places we have been or the people we had met, hoping not to make him feel too envious. I also will always feel a little guilty that we only got to visit him a couple of time a year since we left.

Another thing that hit us hard during our home visit was the state of our local economy. On the day we landed I mistakenly read the local newspaper. I say mistakenly because reading the doom and gloom on each page of the paper brought a feeling of missing the boat terribly. The BHP Alumina works that drives much of our local economy had laid off several hundred workers and more cut backs and retrenchments were on the cards. There were more stories of a similar vane and even the sport on the back page didn't cheer me up much with the favourite football team getting well beaten.

While visiting friends we kept hearing many stories of lost jobs and financial hardship causing high amounts of stress on our mates. We again felt almost guilty for sharing our adventures.

Than came our turn. The small business that we are partners in has consequently suffered a hit and sales are well down this year. We had hoped the the business and our house rental would support our sailing adventures, but this will not be the case.

Faced with a sharp decline in income, we had to cut costs. Our business partner decided that he would like to leave the business and we were left with having to put our sailing adventures on hold for the foreseeable future.

We had six weeks to get Easy Tiger into storage and secured. We then have to get back to Bunbury and find somewhere to live and get into work mode in our heads.

So for the past week we have been savouring every moment of the sailing life. We have been cruising around Moreton bay enjoying each minute. Fortunately we have had great weather and Leanne has been snorkelling at Tangalooma and we have been swimming at Deanbilla.

Today we have anchored off Tipplers resort. We have contemplated going ashore, but that would waste a precious hour or so that we could spend on ET.

We will be hauled out at the boat works on Friday and will pack up and strip Easy Tiger so that she can wait for our return. While we are not sure when that will be, we do know that it will be as soon as practically possible.

The song says you don't know what you've got till it's gone. Trouble is we do know what we had but luckily it's not gone, it's just on hold.