Category Archive

The Week That Was 7 The Week That Was 7

Port Macquarie, Calais and more……. Weekly Outing On awaking last Sunday, Bob’s first words were, ‘I think we’ll take a trip to Port Macquarie…..’ A two hour trip, we passed through country that had been decimated by last summer’s bushfires, but more on that later. Arriving in beautiful Port Macquarie in time for lunch, a […]

Search for a New Boat: the Story Search for a New Boat: the Story

With each year’s commencement I am always determined to keep the Blog up to date and, as always, that plan fell into disarray almost immediately upon our return to Europe in 2019. The past half decade had seen Bob and I mulling over the concept of returning to the Med in Gratis and purchasing a […]

Water Filter Ugrade Water Filter Ugrade

Whilst the gear box is in being repaired, Bob is replacing parts on the water filter.

Removal of the Gear Box Removal of the Gear Box

The remainder of yesterday found Bob working on the removal of the gearbox, a process not as easy as one would imagine. Not familiar with the system and how it was interconnected, this was a slow steady process, as one misstep could cause a flood of seawater surging onboard, or a critical part severely damaged. […]

Departure Delayed Departure Delayed

Departure day the coming day, the morn saw Bob set the engine in motion. Having started her numerous times over the past month to ensure its systems were in working order, it should have been a breeze but once more, good ol’ Murph was up to his tricks. Looks like we’re not departing tomorrow after […]

Radio Checks Radio Checks

This morning Bob worked on the HF Radio, and tuned the channels.

New Batteries and More New Batteries and More

The lovely ex owners left an array of items that somewhat eased the pressure of commencing life on our third home and this was much appreciated. Items such as sheets, towels, cooking implements and work tools meant there was no requirement to rush out and make purchases other than for food during the first few […]

Drogue Attachment Adjustments Drogue Attachment Adjustments

One of the most critical connections on an ocean cruising yacht are those for the drogue. For the uninitiated, a drogue is a funnel shaped contraption that slows the boat down in times of heavy weather. Open at both ends, it is made from strong material that is attached to rope with a stretch in […]

A New Microwave Installed A New Microwave Installed

No – one knew the old microwave was turned on, so when Bob and Pete were going through the systems and turned on the power that activated the microwave, on it went. It was pure luck that Pete was passing it by and noticed said piece was in action. By that time, there was only […]

New Toilets Up and Running New Toilets Up and Running

Hand pump toilets are not our favourite, so Bob had been searching for a couple of reasonably priced macerator versions. Just a finger press required, when used the number two and toilet roll becomes slush and doesn’t over time become a rock hardened mass that is nigh impossible to remove from the holding tank. A […]

A New Washing Machine A New Washing Machine

Operating on the American system, the washing machine was 110vt and 60 cycles, which is an American standard that is incompatible with pretty much everywhere else in the world. That being the case, the decision was made to purchase a 240vt at some stage. Well, that turned out to be sooner rather than later…… Out […]

A Well Kept Secret Revealed!!!!!!! A Well Kept Secret Revealed!!!!!!!

We’ve gone and done it. Purchased a new yacht! A Tayana 55 with a 20m mast and good water line: she averages 8 – 9 knots. Now we have the best of all worlds: a caravan for Oz, a boat for Europe and the Med and now a boat for Asia and the Pacific! The […]

Week 3: Vlissingen, Netherlands Week 3: Vlissingen, Netherlands

How the weeks are flying by. It’s difficult to believe it’s been three weeks since we returned to Europe. A burst of cold weather found us glad to be indoors as Bob and I continued working on the renovations. Monday the outer frame work was installed. Tuesday I took a bit of time out as Bob […]

A Week of Boat Work A Week of Boat Work

There’s a saying amongst boating cruisers: Cruising is boat work – or in our case, make that renovations – in exotic places. How true that is, as this week Bob and I worked at a pace to complete painting and varnishing the pilot house. By late Saturday, the pilot house reno was finished, with the […]

Painting Today! Painting Today!

The hard yakka has been completed and today the painting of the pilot house commences.   Quick snap shots taken during the last few days. Clean out and removal of fans etc. Things always look worse before they improve… Bogging completed Ducting that covers the wires installed. Bob’s famous bean salad ready for dressing. Last muesli for the season…. […]

Electrical Glitch, Emden, Ost Friesland Electrical Glitch, Emden, Ost Friesland

Today our intended eastbound journey to Aurich came to an abrupt halt as, with the turn of the key, all that was to be heard was a choking croaking sound followed by a ‘whirrrrrrrr’. Key turned off, water shut down, ‘Bo-o-o-o-o-o-o-o-b!!!!!’ Up he came to have a go. ‘Whirrrrrrrrrrrrrrr!!!’ ‘Electrical problem,’ said Bob, and down […]

Into The Water She Goes Into The Water She Goes

The 2017 season in Gratis will soon be underway for us. Connected to the tractor in preparation. Bob keeping an eye out as the crane is readied. Up she goes and the last of the supports is removed. Out over the water goes Gratis. Down she goes. Fully down.

Almost Ready for Relaunch

Bob spent the day in the engine room readying Big Bertha. For me, it was scrubbing the cabin top and sides. It’s amazing how much grime collects on surfaces. Big G is set to return to the water tomorrow.

Final Fitting of the Rubbing Strakes

Insert the bolt, sikaflex, tighten the nut, on to the next….. Our girl is looking great!!


The painting and varnishing is progressing slowly. Galley ceilings and walls are completed and the varnishing has commenced. Yesterday, Bob placed the top coat on the inside of the bulwark – the upper bit of the hull.