Not much action for "Endurance" over the past couple of weeks, but a really interesting port, with lots of stories to tell. There's everything we need just a short walk away so a comfortable stay.
We enjoyed a few lovely weather days that would've been nice for sailing, but with ugly weather predicted, chose to leave the boat for a few days, rent a car, and drive up to the Gold Coast.
The Sanctuary Cove Boat Show was a good excuse for a break on dry land, (And, yes, we were impressed, it's a fabulous show. Lots of nice things that we can't afford!).
So, we stayed with our old friends Rod and Andrea Brooks in Currumbin, and then spent a few more days enjoying their company.
Took in the Broadbeach Blues Festival, shopped around for, and eventually bought, an inflatable Stand-Up Paddleboard and generally enjoyed having wheels for a change.
I was a bit stressed about leaving the boat behind as a shocker of an "East Coast Low" battered Coffs Harbour with heavy rain and 40 knot winds while we were luxuriating on the Gold Coast.
It was reassuring to know that John and Jo from the catamaran "Kirra Kirra" were moored nearby and keeping an eye on our floating home, and we zoomed back to Coffs in time to farewell them off on the next leg of their Northward trip.
So, we settled in as a second big storm came through, with more 40 knot winds, massive swell but fortunately no bad rain to go with it.
This time it was my turn to keep an eye on a friend's boat, as the catamaran "Tell Tails" rested in the harbour, with her owner Mark away off the boat for the week.
The marina has seen better days. All of the floating docks are held together by chains, rope and tie-downs, and everything moves when the swell pushes into the harbour.
Somebody's cruising dreams rudely shattered.
There's lots of interesting stuff going on. A couple of days ago, Geelong boat "Sapphire Of London" arrived (in the nick of time before the big storm) with it's owner/skipper Grant St. Quentin and former RGYC commodore John Kint aboard as crew. Great to see them and have a chat. After our 4 month voyage from Geelong, we had to have a chuckle because they only took 10 days!
And yesterday I had coffee aboard the stylish old wooden ketch "Aralla", built in Hobart in 1923, while Guy, her current owner, showed me coordinates for the surfspots and anchorages in New Guinea and Eastern Indonesia. He's sailed her there!
And yes, there is surf in Coffs Harbour. I've had a few waves lately, feeling a bit uncomfortable competing for waves with 15-year old bodyboarders, but at least I've been getting wet a little.
We're heading North in the morning.....Gold Coast bound, expecting a 24 hour voyage in light conditions. An overnighter, with a crossing of the Gold Coast Seaway at the end.
And then we'll be in Queensland!