Moving on to Sanctuary Cove Marina

Saturday (28 November) and Sunday we were out and about utilising the Boatworks courtesy car. So, in no particular order, we both had GP appointments; then the chemist so that we would have a month’s supply of our medication on board; we visited a couple of malls, supermarkets, butchers and a bottle shop to get our Christmas supplies; we got some cash; and even got a gas bottle refilled. All this was achieved in 35oC heat and high humidity which was completely draining. Everywhere we went was absolutely rammed with people; we had to drive constantly around car parks looking for people leaving so that we could find a space; and even Santa was out and about with his helpers. Phew glad to say that our tasks were completed successfully and we were happy that, apart from fresh fruit and vegetables, we were now ready for Christmas onboard.

Monday we stripped the beds and headed off to the laundry. Unfortunately other people had the same idea so we had to wait for some machines to become available. So we sat it out in the air-conditioned environment of the cruisers’ lounge and downloaded lots of things from Netflix to watch for when we are offline. While the downloads chugged along we caught up online with various boring administrative type things. And that was it for most of the day – eventually we were back on board with all our clean laundry folded and stowed. By now the wind had clocked to a south easterly direction and was blowing 25 knots. So very breezy in the cockpit and, thankfully, this meant that it was a bit cooler all round. And then the skies cleared and gave us a spectacular view of the full moon.

Tuesday we had a car again for a couple of hours just to pick up fruit and vegetables. Once back on board we swapped out our docklines for others as these were salt-encrusted so put them in buckets of diluted fabric conditioner to soak and soften them up. We topped up the water tank and found a (temporary) home for the old anchor onboard. Annoyingly the manual bilge pump (in the cockpit) decided to fail at this point so Richard rushed off to order a repair kit (thinking it is probably the diaphragm) which should be arriving in the next week or so (and we can always do a dinghy trip back up the river to the Boatworks to collect it from the chandlery when it arrives). At least they sell Whale pumps here in Australia so no problems in sourcing the kit we need. And apart from that we had a quiet day on board.

Wednesday morning we had breakfast in the Galley and then returned to Morphie for a leisurely day of cleaning and tidying down below. Then we just chilled out until later when David (the main barista from the Galley) came to visit for a short while with his young family – it was really nice to be social for an hour or so over nibbles and drinks (although I of course forgot to take a photo!)…..

After they left I spent a lot of time thinking about Caroline’s family as the time of the funeral approached in the UK. Thankfully the local florist had done a really great job so, although I could not be there, at least they knew that we were supporting them from a distance. Best message received was during the night to let me know that they were now down the pub celebrating her life with a glass or two of prosecco! Caroline would definitely have approved.

Thursday morning we awoke to grey clouds and a bit of drizzle. We got ourselves ready and, at 10.30 (high tide) we said our farewells before casting off to meander down the river towards Sanctuary Cove Marina. It was a huge distance of almost three miles LOL.

On arrival the dockmaster came out to assist us into our berth and we got ourselves tied up and then headed into the office to complete the formalities. And we were given a bag of swag – how nice is that!?! Whilst there they were talking about a carol concert on the lawn of the on-site Intercontinental Hotel that evening and they immediately added us to the guest list. What great service!

We then went for a walk around the huge marina village complex enjoying the splendid views of our very large neighbours and the lagoon-style pool at the Intercontinental Hotel which we have access to as part of our berth fee. We are at the far end of A dock….could be a bit closer to the amenities but who cares?!? Was very hot and steamy out with high humidity making the temperature feel a lot worse.

Anyway, back on board, we had an early dinner, showered, then headed out to the hotel lawn for the carols (which was being filmed and streamed elsewhere in the complex). Not sure what we were expecting but everyone had taken their picnics and chairs/tables with them and we just turned up empty handed. Doh!! Deciding not to sit on the grass for the whole event Richard bravely walked back to Morphie to collect our new beach chairs and we then settled down in comfort to watch the show. It was very family orientated. It was lots of fun to watch the kids get so excited, especially when Santa and Rudolph joined the show, although the best cheering was definitely for the free candy canes LOL. Not all the carols were ones we’d heard before but obviously were crowd favourites if the singing and dancing going on amongst the audience was anything to go by.

Because it was so dark the decorated buggy parade (with most of them lit up like Christmas trees) was fun to watch but difficult to capture on film. Never mind, was a great evening.

At the end of the evening, we enjoyed checking out all the boats lit up on our way back to our berth. This was definitely a good start to our time here in Sanctuary Cove and it might even feel a bit like Christmas!

This morning, Friday, and I’m blogging while Richard is chilling. We are not allowed to work on our boat here (and actually had to get special permission to be allowed to liveaboard) so this is going to be the theme for the month LOL. This afternoon we will probably catch some rays by the beautiful lagoon pool. Definitely a nice place to settle down and read a book or two….so looking forward to that.

Take care everybody at home and look after each other. Bye for now