26th May 2012 - 30th May 2012
Port Douglas getting back 9
Saturday 26th May.
First challenge of the day is dealing with the giant spider on the ground by my fridge, which is on my porch . These Golden Orb females are as big as my spread hand and truly give me the creeps. What on earth is it doing tromping around here. I manage to sweep it into the garden hoping it finds a better home.
Racing again today – but without Liz. She is still not well. Instead we have Michelle who is a rough diamond normally found behind the bar. She has been sailing only 4 months so another novice really – but with attitude – well few brains maybe as she admits mid sentence while I am explaining to her the steps of raising a spinnaker that it is all going over her head. I even explained what a spinnaker is to start with. Ah well. As long as she can act on instructions in the cockpit from me on foredeck.
There is so little wind that the race is postponed as the controller dithers about where to set the windward buoy. After a general re-call we all start limping out to the far mark then three times around the course. We raise the spinnaker a few times quite successfully but the last time the halyard unclips halfway raised and it falls down mostly on the deck and just a bit into the water. We recover that and limp to the finish 5 minutes over time. Grrrr. That’s a DNF for us. The next race is delayed but we have had enough frustration for one day so we head back to the marina, borrow a bowswains chair and recover the halyard. Most of the other boats DNF the second race.
Return home to find the giant spider is back and busy building a web above my fridge! Being arachnophobic, this I cannot tolerate (putting it mildly) so out comes the spray and she gets a mighty dose. She totters and swings around a bit so I send out another dose and shut the door and close the curtain hoping to find a much smaller shrivelled up version to sweep away in the morning. I know. I’m mean.
Sunday 27th May.
No sign of the spider... surely it died. Oh crikey, probably in the garden somewhere plotting her revenge.
Last race out and around Low Isles today. We are coming last in our class in the regatta which is no surprise. The weather is windy enough hooray for that but it is cloudy and believe it or not cold. Well 20 degrees is cold for here. With the wind chill factor I have to don a jacket for the first time in Port Douglas. Our novice trainee Todd the new local butcher comes with us and helps keep me entertained on the long 4 hour race. We try to remember jokes.
Mike is on the helm again. He must be exhausted so it is surprising he is able to stay the distance at the shindig which is the prizegiving at the club later. Jack and Lorraine and a couple of their friends join me for the dinner but leave before the dancing really starts and the club members let their hair down to the great band. I kick off my shoes and make up for the missed gym classes over the last couple of weeks. Being danced sober I drive Mike’s truck (which is an indescribable autoelectrician’s mess) to deliver Katherine, Stewart and Mike back to their place. Mike is slightly wobbly but insists, on galantly walking me the 500m home to my place. His conversation seems to be about what an amazing person I am etc etc. and I wonder about the ‘good mate‘ thing. I think he has a crush on me.
Monday 28th May.
Rest day again. I don’t feel seady – just tired. All that uninhibited dancing! Mike texts me to appologise for the quick goodnight kiss last night. I laugh out loud.
Guests arrive for checkin for the wind surfing course being held near by. A large truck has disgorged about 20 new boards and other regalia. They are constructing them in the car park. Lovely to have the place full to the brim with guests at last – if only for this week.
Tuesday 29th May.
The new offer arrives for the hall and I spend some time printing out signing and scanning and emailing back for our secretary‘s signature and stamping. The amount is more than double the first offer so our lawyer is onto it and we are desperately hoping the exit clause in the first offer will expire in 15 working days and the second offer can come into play. Really tricky politically as both offers depend on obtaining approval from the Council. We cannot be seen to sabotage the first offer and we need to ensure the second buyer never finds out the value of the first offer. I’ll be chewing my fingernails by June 25th.
Back to the gym after drying out the boat and collecting mail. Good to be on the bike again. Rain showers in the evening wonder how much is going into the dry boat.
Wednesday 30th May. Nelson‘s birthday
I am mothering the guests. The fire alarms are playing up in one apartment and they beep every 38 secs I am told. One lad has hurt the palm of his hand quite badly. Over the plaster patch we bind it with all I have which is packing tape.
The guests are disappointed there has been no sunshine but at least they are happy with the wind for their kite surfing. I sit with John and Annie and their dogs on the beach a while and watch the kite surfers leaping the waves.
Decide to call in on Jan and Neil for a cuppa. They have just returned from Melbourne where Neil’s liver was operated on. He looks thinner than ever but says it was successful. Jan tells me he is still in pain but he just sits there smiling without a hope of a word in, while Jan and I natter on.
Down at the club we are the first boat to head out into the miserable weather. Mike gives me a few curious looks but I ignore them. We are ‘good mates‘!
It is unseasonably grey and cold for Port Douglas. 20 degrees. The locals are complaining and wearing jackets!
In the evening I am frustrated I can’t get through to Nelson on the phone so I sing my message into the answer phone. Hope he had a lovely 32nd birthday.