Lake Macquarie – 19/01/2012
My dear friend said ‘what’s up skipper, you haven’t wrote in your blog for a while?’
Well I had better do something about it so here goes.
It has been a month since my last scribbles and this is the first for 2012 so I hope everyone has enjoyed the festive season and that the New Year is kind to all.
We have not had any great adventures in the last month it has been a time where we have taken it easy and enjoyed family and friends. We have spent a lot of time with our great friends Colleen, Brian and family having been welcomed into their home for Christmas Day which was a great day. They have been looking after us running us places we needed to go and we have had many of sundowners with them, they are great people.
A few days after we arrived here daughter Manda, her husband Clint and the three grandchildren came down from Dubbo to see us and their friends so it was good to spend a couple of days with them on the boat. We did a bit of fishing and was shown up by the grandchildren catching most of the fish even 3 year old granddaughter Piper catching a good sized bream, granddaughter Bridie catching a flathead which was the biggest catch of the day and grandson Kai catching the next best flathead. My catch well we won’t talk about that manly because there is nothing to talk about. The best part was seeing the children enjoying themselves. The visit was short as Manda had to return for work as busy time for Police Officers around this time of year but it was good seeing them.
A couple of days were spent helping Brian paint the front of the house and we have to finish that before we head north. On another day we sailed up to Belmont to do a little shopping and the Lake Macquarie Yacht Club allowed us to tie up alongside for a couple of hours free of charge. We did the shopping then went back to the club and had lunch before leaving and sailing back to Summerland Point.
The weather has restricted us a little as far as taking friends out for a sail we have had some rainy days and quite cold days. There was one day we got out for a sail when Nancy’s sister Marjorie visited we had a good sail around and finally anchoring by the Boat Shed a little north of Frying Pan Bay where we had a relaxing time then dinner before turning in for the night. The next morning we sailed back to the dock before it got busy to let Marjorie off.
Another day was spent with Colleen, Brian and Emma when we went for a sail and anchored off Wangi Wangi, we tried the fishing but they weren’t home so we had a nice lunch before heading back to Summerland Point, when we anchored there we had sundowners before taking our friends ashore. On the way we spotted a shark chasing down fish, yes there is sharks in the lake here but they stay around Pulbah Island where the deeper waters are. They could be increasing in numbers since commercial fishing has been stopped in the lake, however, the sharks do not seem to worry about human beings as there are a lot of people swimming and skiing or falling off the towed donuts that are very popular here.
New Year was quiet for us we had dinner with Colleen, Brian and family and we returned on board just after 2100 hours we watch some early fireworks in the distance but called it a night by 2300 hours. Apparently at midnight there was a great display of fireworks it woke Nancy and she got up to take photos of them, me, well I didn’t hear a bloody thing. The next day we were invited to Alison and Michael’s home, Alison being the daughter of Colleen and Brian that has three lovely children, Sam, Evie and Xavier. It was a great day and a great lunch. The Colleen and Brian’s family are like an extended family to us I have known Colleen since 1968 when we were both in the Navy and we have been friends ever since. I have fond memories of when we used to visit her parents place in Catherine Hill Bay which was a little coal mining village that is now sought by big city people. We used to go fishing on the lake in a little one cylinder putt putt boat with Colleen and her Mother Kate who used to catch all the fish and her Father Fred whilst when we first arrived and invited in for a cuppa would be washing your car for you. Great memories great times and we continue to have those great times today although Kate passed on a few years ago I think at the age of 92.
On January 4th Nancy took a flying visit to Dubbo and Cobar to see the grandchildren and her daughters, I would have liked to go to but with weather conditions and making sure the boat was safe and the expense that it would have incurred suggested that Nancy went by herself. She met daughter Angela in Sydney who had travelled from Melbourne then they travelled together to Dubbo. It was a quick visit for them and Nancy returned yesterday, two of the days were taken up with travel with over 400kms to Dubbo and then another 300kms to Cobar and back.
Today we went over to the public dock and filled up with water got a little fuel and washed the boat we then headed off changing anchorages due to the expected high winds up to 30knots plus coming from west to south so we have had to move a couple of times for a suitable anchorage to be a little comfortable. We went over to Morisset and got the washing machine out and did the washing it did not take long to dry in the wind. Then when the wind changed we headed back to Frying Pan Bay. Tonight might be a little lumpy with the winds and may have a few wake-ups through the night to check things.
We are still on the lake and have been enjoying ourselves with our friends last weekend we had Colleen and Brian aboard and went over to Crangan Bay and anchored off Browns Point we spent the day trying to fish with little success what was caught were throw backs due to the size. We had a nice lunch and dinner and sat around chatting.
On Sunday after bacon and eggs on toast for breakfast we decided to go for a sail the wind was light and sometimes due to land forms the wind almost but disappeared but we continued sailing north. Colleen and Nancy had the fishing lines out trolling with good lures and caught two tailors each but only landed one each as the other two dropped off just before getting them aboard. We then sailed back south to Point Wolstoncroft and anchored in the bay a little south of the point for lunch. We tried our hand at fishing there without any luck. A little after lunch we could see rain approaching so we decided to move so we weighed anchor and headed for the jetty at Summerland Point arriving at around 1600 hours we docked and filled up with water and pumped out the holding tanks. After Brian and Colleen left we headed out to anchor.
We have just been doing a few chores since then and moving anchorages dependant on wind direction. Whilst we were anchored on Monday we had a visit from another old friend, Randall Ferrington on his yacht ‘Blueskies 3′ he had been out for a sail and popped by to invite us to a BBQ lunch on Wednesday (which was yesterday). Randall like I was a Fire Manager in the rural fire service and like I has retired. He has been a yachty for many years and has skippered ferries on Sydney Harbour.
Tuesday was washing day and since Nancy has hurt her wrist I have become chief cook and bottle washer and general dogs body so I had to do the washing, our little on board washing machine works well.