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Monday, October 22, 2001

Apartment Living

Yes, we moved ashore, bought a little furniture from IKEA, put some cushions from WINGS on the floor, and settled in for a period of city life.
wingssail-Fredrick Roswold


Sunday, October 21, 2001

October 22, 2001-Boaters Ashore

We have been living ashore for three months now, can you believe it? But just to put your minds at ease, this pair of dedicated boaters haven't gotten far from the water. We have an apartment which overlooks the commercial Port of Sydney.

We don't see the sailboat racing fleet, that is farther out in the western portions of the harbor, and we can't see the Opera House, which is behind the buildings of downtown. What a view of the Sydney Skyline from our Sydney ...

But we can see, however, the comings and goings of container ships, cruise ships, and various freighters and harbor traffic. We can look up from whatever we are doing at almost any time and see some big ship moving out our window. Tight quarters for a cruise ship. This was our vie... Sometimes it looks like one of the buildings is underway. Above the short stretch of water between us and the container terminal we look into the glass and steel office towers of Sydney's downtown.

Hardly a day goes by when we don't look at these buildings and wonder if we are going to next see an airliner fly into one of them. Then we wonder when the US war on terrorism is going to achieve some success, even if it is only the tokenism of capturing or killing Osama. So there is still a residual impact on us from September 11. But we carry on.

Out apartment also looks down on the marina where Wings is berthed.

Sydney Superyacht Center Marina. This is where WIN...

We can see it clearly, and with binoculars we can almost be on board. Every weekend, and on some evenings or mornings, we walk to the boat and work on the boat project. It is slow going, but we are finally making good progress. Now we are putting things back together down below (after painting) and on the deck. Today we sent off about four dozen pieces of deck hardware to have them reannodized, which we hope will turn the pitted, corroded, and paint smeared aluminun parts back into attractive shiney black ones. In a week or two we'll have winches, tracks, and blocks again, which means we'll be able to sail the boat again. We need to, it's been too long.

We need to do some sail repair, and maybe even make a new one, and we need to replace some ropes, the stereo, a pump or two, etc, etc etc. Money will be a limiting factor, as it always is, but we'll prioritize and get by.

We figure that the Wings will be in better shape after this project than it has been since we got it in 1986, so that will be good.

One thing we haven't started to do is to figure out what portion of our junk we will put back aboard and what we will get rid of. We also don't know what to do with the stuff we are getting rid of. There isn't much of a boating public here in Sydney to sell used stuff to, and no big swap meets to go to. But we are still hoping to shed a couple of thousand pounds, so we have to try to find a home for it, to say nothing picking which pieces of junk to leave behind and which to keep.

Another decision we have to make is where to go when we get the boat finished. Rgith now we don''t think we'd like to go to Indonesia. Maybe not Thailand either. Probably, next July, when we are ready to leave, we'll back to the towards the Pacific Islands, to Vanautu and new Caledonia. Maybe back to Fiji as well. We also are thinking about the Philippines, Hong Kong, and China. As much as Europe lures us, we are not yet ready to leave the Pacific.
But one thing is for sure. We are still cruising. This time in Sydney is just temporary.

DAWN IN SYDNEYI got up early to do some work and watch the dawn of a new day. It was beautiful to see the sky first turn a rusty purple, then red, then finally see the sun come up over the Sydney skyline. And since it was morning and my mind was fresh, I did some good work on the project plans I had laid out on the the table. It was peaceful and beautiful on that morning, and Judy missed it by sleeping in a little longer (in the bed of boat cushions on the floor of our small aprtment).

THE DAY THE REFER DIED.The boat project has marked the passing of our trusty referigerator. For 14 years this old second hand $25 refer served us well, despite chronic shaking and bouts of seasickness, and it's loyalty earned it a permenant place on the boat, even though we knew we could easily get a younger, stronger, replacement at West Marine.
But after the boat was in the shed in Noake's boatyard, when we got it back to our marina berth, we found the refer silent, and by then it was beyond resusitation. So with an emotional ceremony, we carted the remains off to the dumpster. I guess in the future we'll miss the gentle tinkle of wine glasses and rattle of the stove top that meant that the refer was running and keeping our beer cold. Bye, loyal friend.

Fred & Judy, SV WINGS, Sydney


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