Monday, September 22, 2014

Opua: moored; gone; appreciated; surprised; sea boots; drinking wind

        Just before 8:00 p.m. last evening the wind died as though someone had turned off a switch.  This morning was clear, sunny and calm, so I Torqeedoed from inside the breakwater dock to a mooring just outside, on which GANNET now swings.
        This mooring is closer to shore and perhaps a couple of hundred yards south of the one I owned. 
        Some of you will know that I wrote an article titled, “The Best Mooring in the World.”  I don’t actually believe in many ‘bests’ and did state that I didn’t claim my mooring was the best in the world, just that there were none better, which isn’t the same thing.
        Because Opua is a small place, when the marina staff learned that I had sold THE HAWKE OF TUONELA they emailed and asked if I would like to sell the mooring back to them for twice what I paid for it.  I agreed, thinking that if I ever returned to Opua I could rent the mooring and still be ahead.
        Alas, I have learned that I can’t because it no longer exists.  The best mooring in the world has been decommissioned.  The ladies in the marina office do not know why.  I am reasonably certain that it was not retired in my honor, like the uniform number of a great baseball player.  
        I am also very glad to be on this mooring.  
        If the day continues fine, I will have my evening drink on deck and perhaps see gannets overhead.


        Several New Zealanders have emailed welcoming me back to my second home.  I very much appreciate that.  Even though I can never live here full time, I do feel that it is my second home and would gladly have it be my first.


        Both sets of foul weather gear, a towel, both pairs of boats shoes, a pair of socks, the Jordan drogue, and a flotation cushion are spread about the deck hopefully drying in the sun.
        I have been wearing sea boots in GANNET’s cabin because they are the only dry footwear aboard and it is too cool to go barefoot.  I am not quite eccentric enough to wear them ashore and have been wearing the less wet pair of shoes instead.
        I am surprised by how quickly GANNET’s interior has returned to normal after the severe last two days of the passage.  Almost everything that can be damaged by water—the solar panel regulator is an exception—is stowed in waterproof bags or boxes, the cushions are vinyl, the small amount of wood oiled, so water doesn’t do much damage.  But wiping down with paper towels from overhead to bilge was enough to make GANNET habitable again.
        My battery fan did drown.  I’ll replace it, but a fan in New Zealand is hardly a priority.


        While I often make and miss typos, the majority of errors that find their way into this journal are caused by auto-fill.  As I have often mentioned, I am not good at proof-reading my writing because my mind sees what it expects not what actually appears before my eye.  Some of these are amusing and I thank Jay for pointing out one from the last post:  so I huddled amid debris, read, drank wind, listened to music and went to bed.
         I have indeed drunk wind, but last night it was wine.