Z E N I T U D E
Blue Water Dreaming
In Magnetic Island - Life at the Marina
Beautiful Nelly Bay Marina - 12 May to 4 August, 2015
We had made arrangements for a two months stay in this marina to take care of several boat jobs plus a trip overseas to visit some countries in south east Asia, but we hadn't envisaged we'd be just a week short of a four months stay.
Right from the start life became hectic while Zenitude turned from a lovely livable place to a chaotic mess. Trying to keep boat living areas organized while various jobs are underway around these areas is just totally hopeless.
Main sail, the blue bag, neatly folded by the sailmaker, back on board ready to install. I wish our sail folding skills were as good as this.
Our first priority was to find a sailmaker in Townsville and we found one about 25 km from town, interestingly enough his sail making shed was in the middle of a farm. A beautiful and calm setting even though a strange place for sail making. He did have a good explanation, his daughter loves horses.
Taking the sail with its 28kg weight to this farm was a bit of an ordeal, as we had to take the ferry to Townsville and rent a car for the trip. Luckily the marina is right next to the ferry terminal and we found a rental car office at the ferry terminal in Townsville. And then we had to do it all over again once the sail was ready. He did a good job at a reasonable price, at least it was all worthwhile.
In July we were back from our interesting SE Asia land trip. The idea to rest a bit and then continue on sailing up the QLD coast was crashed as we got stuck in the marina with a new problem, electric failure in the starboard engine.
Several people spent many hours day after day trying to figure out what and where was that intermittent electric problem that had burned the engine's starter motor.
Oscar spent countless hours looking at the engine's electric diagram and discussing possible areas of failure.
We are grateful to Mike, our very patient advisor that could not do the work himself after his knee operation, but guided Oscar all along to test the electrical terminals and wires in search for a damaged connection.
Lots of frustration when the problem seemed to have disappeared just to show up again a couple of days later without any pattern, as a consolation we think that, like other times before, we will for sure find and fix the problem, eventually.
How untidy, on the positive side it was a great opportunity to tidy up
In the meantime, not all is worry and work and every now and then there is lots of fun too. We have been enjoying the company of many friends. Dave and Booker from Tortuguita came around and stayed at the marina before continuing their travels around the world. We thought we wouldn’t see them again this season but timing was good and we had a chance to share pizza one more time. They went of their way not long after towards Darwin, to get ready for the rally across Indonesia. As always David has been helping with lots of suggestions and ideas to fix our problem and he keeps doing so over the phone.
Mark from Axis Mundis was spending some time in the marina as well and joined in the pizza night.
One weekend we rented a car and went over to Cardwell to visit Maryanne and Barry. We met them in Panama, they line handled for us during Zenitude’s Panama canal crossing and we shared many anchorages during the Pacific crossing in 2010. Their boat Toroa is now in Japan waiting for them to come back to more sailing around there.
By the end of July we decided it was time to keep going, whatever was not done would have to wait. We intended to spend some time in Cairns and then keep going north up to Lizard Island, and we wanted to do it slowly as there are many places to stop along the way.
Finally we left the marina on August 4th and rounded up the island to anchor at Horseshoe Bay, getting ready to leave next morning for the island hoping trip to Cairns. The engine had been behaving properly for a while but we were still not one hundred percent sure if the problem had disappeared.