I can't really say much about Bali, because I spent most of my time there at the yacht club, but will say this - after being freezing in Melbourne, the 35 degree days were bliss. So, what about the sailing? We were amazingly lucky with the wind, which blew us straight to Broome in 6 days exactly (to the hour!). It was quite strong, which meant plenty of water over the deck, plenty of salt and spray on us and also plenty of bruises as we tried to keep our balance on the roly poly sea. We kept watches through the day and night. After testing out a few intricate watch routines, we settled for the simple 2 hours on, 4 hours off routine. As you can probably imagine, that meant none of us ever got much sleep at night! With 2 good bunks on the boat and 3 people, we "hot-bunked" - whoever was coming off watch took the bunk of the person coming onto watch. This might possibly have led to some devious bunk-choosing, so as to have the preferred bunk for the 4-hour block of sleep you got in the night. Possibly. We filled our days talking, eating, sleeping and eating and sleeping more. Despite some dramas with the stove (flames everywhere!) we managed some gourmet meals - tuna pesto spiral pasta with steamed veggies - as well as some less-than-gourmet but exceedingly delicious delicacies...think milo + chocolate. In the light of the full moon (a super-moon no less), in the open ocean, on a boat, with friends, what could be better?
Suzi and Jim (skipper and owner of the yacht) were absolutely amazing and after a day I felt like I'd known them for years. I'm completely in awe of Suzi's ability to have a shower on deck (complete with hair-washing), in a rough sea, without getting a drop of sea water on her. I, on the other hand, stood on deck for about 2 minutes in the same weather and got completely drenched by a wave. I clearly need more practice. But all too soon, my sailing adventure was over. We arrived at beautiful Cable Beach on a glorious day, sailing down the coast with a brand spanking new spinnaker speeding us along. A couple of nights more on the boat (punctuated by a rather eventful trip ashore to do some laundry) and then before I knew it I was back on a plane to Melbourne - a mere 11 days after I'd made the decision to go! And that was my whirlwind sailing adventure.