Boat jobs in Coomera

Thursday (4 February) I blogged during the day while Richard pottered around doing some important jobs like working Y-valves. In the late afternoon we took ourselves off to the Pirate Ship for sundowners before returning to Morphie for dinner.

Friday morning and it was time to give Morpheus some loving care and attention. First job was to wash her down as she had accumulated quite a bit of dust on her topsides whilst we had been away. Then, having wiped her down, we used a cleaner on the topside gelcoat. Afterwards we worked on the non-slip areas of the deck and coach roof by applying a layer of special non-slip wax before washing off the residue and drying it all. We then took a bit of a breather before tackling the coach roof which was waxed and polished. And here she is looking all beautiful and clean again, although we did notice that the varnish is starting to deteriorate on the eyebrow so that will probably be our next job.

Later on we picked up our courtesy car for the weekend and headed to the doctors. Blood test results were all fine, we got our repeat prescriptions, and then headed to the bottle shop to stock up on supplies. We then had a takeout roast chicken for dinner. Have to say we both slept well that night after all that physical exercise.

Saturday was a big provisioning run. We are planning to be on anchor now for a month and, then, after a short return to the Boatworks for doctors appointments we are booked into Sanctuary Cove again in early March. So we needed to replenish our stores. We were out for quite a few hours and it took us just as long on our return to find places to stow all the goodies onboard.

Later in the afternoon Richard decided to tackle cleaning and waxing the cockpit while I headed back to the shops as I wanted to get some new shorts / capri pants. I was surprised to find that Waitangi Day was being celebrated in the Coomera Westfield Mall and that Maoris were performing some traditional cultural dancing and singing including the haka. So I enjoyed watching that for a while – which brought back great memories of the numerous times we had spent at the Waitingi Treaty Grounds in New Zealand – before returning to the boat with my purchases. For a change we spent the evening in the cockpit enjoying some music and a snack supper.

On the dock behind us we have the YouTubers Sailing Zatara who are here as they need to get their engines replaced. They are constantly coming and going and we have noticed randomly that the males of the family go everywhere by some sort of electric skateboard or scooter, whilst the females walk everywhere. Very interesting….

Sunday we headed out very early to the laundry having got everything we could think of stripped off and into the washing bags. After getting the washing started we headed to the Galley to have breakfast.

Afterwards Richard headed out to Bunnings (because no week on the dock would be complete without a trip to his favourite shop LOL) plus to pick up some other bits and pieces that we had missed from our original provisioning list the day before. I stayed watching the laundry and used the Boatworks internet in the Cruisers lounge to do some admin work plus also to look into the Australian visa renewal process. Our current visas are good until mid March so I need to action this around the end of February but just wanted to check it all out in advance.

Reunited back on board we hand washed all our boat cloths; did the engine checks; filled up with water; and stowed everything properly down below in preparation for our departure on Monday morning. On our return we had noticed that we had a new neighbour on a Princess powerboat and he clearly didn’t make it into the slip easily in the gusty conditions – look at the damage he did to his boat on his arrival by hitting the huge pile at the end of the dock. Ouch….that won’t polish out…. Thankfully he didn’t hit us!

Very early Monday morning we returned the car. I checked the freezer temperature only to realise that it had fallen over during the night and we could not get the compressor to restart. Damn, we had just filled this up too, so we need to get this resolved as soon as possible to avoid our newly-purchased food defrosting. We rang Rene (our “go to” refrigerant guy) for advice but he is so busy that he wouldn’t be able to schedule us into his diary for another three weeks – so it was down to us to resolve it. We realised that, until this was resolved, we wouldn’t be able to leave the dock as we will need shore power to support the freezer as below a certain level of voltage the freezer tends to throw a wobbly anyway. So I went to the office and booked us in for another day. Frustrating but these things happen…..

We spent the rest of the day trouble shooting the issue to no avail initially. We decided to swap the fridge and freezer units over. We can live without the fridge if necessary but obviously we had a lot of food in the freezer that was at risk. So I cleaned both units, reset their temperature settings, and moved the food across. The fridge responded really well and started to come down to temperature (although a long way from freezing at this point) and we carried on working on the freezer unit. With a bit of mucking around with gas and pressure levels we were able to get the freezer to respond and stay on. So, once it was stable, we swapped all the food back across again and hoped for the best overnight. Phew had been a very long and frustrating day!

Tuesday morning and the temperature in the freezer box was coming down nicely but still had a way to go. And the wind was howling too. So we decided to stay another day on the dock. We had a quiet day on board and even did another small laundry run just to make sure there was nothing left that needed washing on board before we headed out LOL.

Wednesday morning and we were up early. The fridge and freezer were fine, the temperatures were set, and we set off for Tipplers anchorage on South Stradbroke Island. The wind picked up en route and, to start with, we were getting a lift from the outgoing tide until we got to the Broadwater when the current was running against us.

We arrived at Tipplers and it was flat calm on arrival and not too busy either, so that was a result. We got anchored quickly and enjoyed sitting in the cockpit for a while – and, then of course, the skies darkened and it rained on us!

In the meantime a cabin cruiser (which had tried to anchor at least three times to our knowledge) decided to drop his anchor in the channel but then backed up into the shallows which we thought was very strange, but assumed he knew what he was doing. So when the tide went out he ended up sitting on the mud and despite efforts from others they were not able to pull him out. Later in the evening as the tide came back in he was able to get himself free of the mud and re-anchored with all the other boats. We are genuinely surprised by how many boats we have seen stranded on the mudbanks during our travels – these areas are well buoyed and charted so there really is no excuse!

It was quite chilly and drizzly in the cockpit during the evening so we headed down below for a Netflix evening. But we had a lovely sunset anyway.

This morning, Thursday, and we were up early and suddenly the big supply barge came in and cut between us and the green channel marker (so he was travelling outside of the channel). Was a bit close to say the least! We decided to give him more room for his departure so, once he was offloading the trucks, we picked up anchor quickly and got set further away. Was at least a lovely bright morning.

We had planned to leave here tomorrow to head to Peel Island for the weekend (making the most of the shelter there from light north winds) and then on to other anchorages near Moreton Island. But, of course, the weather forecast changed again and there are strong winds from the south east forecast now from Monday to Wednesday at least (plus a chance of a thunderstorm too) so we might just stay here and sit it out as we have protection here plus it is good holding in mud. So plans all up in the air yet again but we will just go with the flow – we are definitely getting used to the changeable Australian summer weather.

Hope you are all doing well at home despite the snow and hope to see you all again at some point later this year. With UK quarantine rules; requirement for covid tests; banned countries list; we are really not sure how long we will have to stay here especially since some of the major ‘hubs’ (eg Hong Kong, Singapore, UAE) are also not currently letting transit passengers through to the UK either. And, of course, we don’t want to abandon Morphie without the international borders opening so that we can return to her here in Australia. So we’ll just have to keep sending you lots of love and Australian hugs until that day comes. Take care and stay safe everybody.