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Nearly there…

Posted by on March 27, 2012

ERIK turned up in Dunalley yesterday without me.

Sigh… Of relief, and… Something else… Experience missed?

Regular readers of the blog will have probably guessed that there was a bit of angst with two passage plans gone by. There was more to it than that…

Just as we before we hauled out, we got news that I had a job, back in Hobart. That set us on a schedule; I had to be in Hobart in three weeks (later extended by a week, thanks to flexibility on behalf of my employer).

We hauled out, to get ERIK ready for the trip back, and towards the end of that 10 day extravaganza, started looking about for fuel for the trip.

We heard that the Tamar Cruises boats got fuel delivered by truck twice a week, so we decided to tie up on Home Point and await the next truck, due Monday. At $1.54 a liter, it was worth the wait.

Meanwhile, we got visits from friends old and new, enjoyed ringside seats for the Launceston Regatta, and began to plan our trip south.

First, the kids weren’t keen on the trip, so we felt that if we could arrange to have them down south already, then Lis and I could do the trip in one hit; faster, less stressful (not looking after the kids), and it would mean a smaller weather window would be required.

Second, if we could arrange for a third crewman, that would make the 40 hour trip easier. We could do 3 hours on, 6 hours off, rather than usual two-up 3 hour on and off shifts.

Third, we needed a berth in Hobart.

Funny how things work out… The berth was easy, organized in 3 emails, despite a bit of argy-bargy over the price.

Looking for a third crewman, we instead got an offer to look after the kids!

Blowing the first, then second passage plans out due to weather meant that our third crewman became available, albeit for a limited time.

Saturday came, and despite the blustery weather at the time, the forecast was looking good. But…

Dad had been crook, as in “Hi son, don’t worry but I’m in hospital” level of crook. With the weather, a week had passed with the kids in somebody else’s care, and that window was running out, as our kind volunteers needed to fly to Queensland (and no, they weren’t going to take our kids with them). We arranged further care with some other friends, but they could only take them for a day or so due to other commitments. Our third crew member had to be somewhere else in four days.

Aghh! Talk about juggling live cats and chainsaws!

I called Dad Saturday morning, his protestations of “I’m fine!” weren’t convincing. We called the kids, and our eldest told us he’d very much like either his Mum or Dad to be with him.

Decision time. The trick to juggling cats and chainsaws is not showmanship, but completing the task without injury.

I decided to let my wife and Grum, our third crew member bring the boat down the coast. The weather was looking good, they’d be fine. I needed to look after my Dad and boys.

The reunion with the boys was long and a bit teary; it involved lots of hugs and wrestles.


So that’s how ERIK came to Dunalley without me. Right decision? I think so, in the sense that everything worked out:

  1. Lis and Grum had a great trip.
  2. Dad was happy I was here to look after him.
  3. The boys were overjoyed to be with me.

I would have liked to have done the trip though… Just not with any of the stress.

Dawn breaks off Eddystone point, Sunday 25th

Lis and Grum making for the Marion Narrows, Monday 26th

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