I’ve been a bit slack at completing this last blog, and almost didn’t bother but I wanted to wrap it up properly.
At Pangkor, back in Malaysia, we had a ton of jobs to take care to get the boat ready to put her to bed.
Come monday we hired a moped and with Alex sandwiched between us we drove to the nearby town to visit a couple of offices to check Luna Ray in with customs and the harbour master, and then Tesco’s.
Wednesday, at 5:30pm we reversed out of our pen, spun the boat about and straight onto the Sea-lift. I was directed to power the boat left and right a few times before we were perfectly straight on its longitudinal tubes. Then we lifted out the water for a very long wash-down. I was pleased to see the hull looking in good shape. As Naomi & Alex watched from the ground, there was some issue with the power to the hardstand area they were trying to repair. One of the boys electrocuted himself on the mains - twice! - before he shrugged it off and carried on cleaning the
boat - spraying huge amount of water everywhere.
By the time the machine trundled us to our spot it was getting dark so we left them to place the support props while we went just across the road to enjoy the luxuries of the hotel room we had booked for a couple of nights - cleaning up the boat whilst still living in it would be very difficult.
To see our Sea-Lift experience on video goto https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yEACuCrpeHs The next morning I got stuck into laying up the engine - first running fresh water through it. To do this I removed the raw water strainer cap and held a hose into it. So we started the engine up, up in the air, and it didn’t shake the boat as much as I feared. Unfortunately once we started I could no longer adjust the hose speed for some reason so I had to keeping running up to the cockpit to shout down to Naomi at the tap to make fine adjustments so that we stayed somewhere between running dry or spilling over - successful most of the time. After 20 minutes of that she was nicely
warmed up for an oil & filter change, gearbox oil change finished off with a liberal spray of WD40.
Those last 2 days became quite a frantic rush to get everything done before we took a taxi to Lemut, and then bus to KL. There is a bus that goes directly to the airport but its schedule would have meant a seven hour wait at the airport. Changing bus for the airport is not easy. You have to climb the stairs to the concourse, out the building, cross a couple of roads and 200 m walk - sounds easy enough but not when you’re weighed down with luggage and a small child.
Got to the airport early but wasted a lot of time checking in the pram. A bit irritating as we payed to have it wrapped in plastic, returned to the desk but redirected to queue at another as it was closed, only to be asked by another check-in person why it was wrapped as normally its wheeled to the door of the plane, and finally she couldn’t take it as it needed to go to the oversized counter !
ready for kindy
in our new apartment
The flight was fine and delivered us to the Gold Coast on time, despite the plane lifting up at the last moment to take a second stab at landing. We had a few days visiting friends and looking for a car to buy, before driving up to Yeppoon.
We stayed at Naomi’s parents house for about a week before getting a flat, converted from old squash courts so has nice wooden floors. Naomi has started doing some work with her brother making shade sails while I have been battling with AHPRA (the medical registration board), the GP college and medicare - a process with frustrating beurocratic and often expensive hold-ups at every step. I sent my first application form in February and still it goes on and on!
I have been asking around about jobs and found a place in a practice only 5 minutes walk away so that will make for a short commute - if I ever get to work there!
With all this free time while I cannot work, we have taken a couple of short trips away.
First was a few days at the
The new car
near the dam at Cania Gorge
picturesque Cania Gorge, staying in a cabin overlooking a creek. We took walks in the mornings, and relaxed in the afternoons, including watching Alex play in campground’s freezing water park.
We had another long weekend at Agnes Water. We stayed in a cabin in Tannum Sands on the first night…. unfortunately it was right across from the there they were holding the weekly disco, but our peace wasn’t too disturbed as it was for the grey nomads and so was finished by 9pm.
At Agnes Water Beach Park we were “glamping” (glamorous camping) in the “Treetops” area. We had to climb stairs to reach the platform that held our tent, nicely appointed with all mod cons and a balcony looking over the caravans to the sea. We had timed this trip to coincide with the 1770 festival celebrating Cook’s landing. We took the walk from the museum that passes our campsite to a lovely sea lookout. Naomi said it may be her favourite walk ever! - it ticked a lot of her boxes - short distance; relatively flat; nice temperature and a few features like lily-covered ponds along the way to break the monotony
of tree after tree.
On the friday 5pm we came down to the foreshore in 1770 to watch the re-enactment of Cook’s landing. I was disappointed you didn’t get see him getting off a boat as the scene started on land and was brief too. They then repeated it at 5:30 as the schedule had been printed incorrectly on some pamphlets.
The next day was the main day of the festival which wasn’t much different from a village fete (except they repeated the re-enactment again) with stalls and fair grounds rides for kids. When we returned in the evening the simultaneous fire-dancing/chinese dragon/firework display was pretty cool.
We finished the weekend with breakfast on the balcony looking over the sea, the same sea we had sailed Luna Ray on back in 2013, on our way to Asia.
So, this wraps up the blog for a while. I should start work soon, Naomi will be working with her brother, maybe some teaching, and Alex has started a little day-care…. all hum-drum stuff too boring for the blogosphere.
But come November we should
return to Asia for at least a few
months in the Langkawi-Phuket area so if anyone is interested on visiting/joining us for a while let us know.
Luke, Naomi & Alex
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