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Tag: Sailing (Page 1 of 2)

Week End

This weekend had is hit and miss aspects. We are now all sick with the same hideous bug, to different degrees of despondency. M has had it the worst and the longest, Small Z has a recurring fever, horrible hacking cough and a nose that explodes at regular intervals. Me? I’m just going with the cough and the very snuffly nose.

Because Small Z seems to come good for several hours during the day we have gathered false confidence on both days this weekend and gone out. Yesterday we arranged to meet D&E and Small E at an hysterically bizarre venue – Selandra Rise. A property development site. Why? Purely because The Mudcakes were playing. For free. And it was basically halfway between our two houses.

Despite the Bureau of Meteorology being an organisation known for its incredibly precise predictions (yes, that is sarcasm) the day was vile. A steady, unrelenting drizzle greeted us… and the 50 or so other people who attended. Obviously the organisers had counted on having a slightly better turn out – there were multiple stalls, food, a petting zoo full of ‘baby’ animals that were so young that some of them were basically still in utero, and plenty of be-suited people with shiny white teeth spruiking the house and land packages.

The ‘MC’ for the day, who stood bravely in front of the stage in his suit with his cordless microphone, appeared very savvy, except for several references to the upcoming performance of ‘The Mudrock Kids’ and his suggestions ‘for the guys out there to get on over to the tradies area where you can talk to real-life tradies and find out about becoming one’. Yeah. That’s right. Because female tradies? That’s just weird.

Family Day at Selandra Rise

The Mudcakes were great, despite the rain and the fact that most people stood about 50 metres away from them in order to stay dry. Small E got up on stage and accompanied them on bongos while M and Small Z danced at their feet. However, about an hour after that Small Z faded rapidly and we had to bail. Each time I see E lately I think (and it’s very possible) that next time I see her she’ll have a newborn. Oh. My. GOD. And then I panic and try to arrange to see her ‘just one more time’…

This morning, the weather was so beautiful that staying home felt too hard. We went out on the trimaran, arriving a bit early and having to wait for about 40 minutes for the tide to lift us off the mud. It was excellent to be out even though we just stayed on the creek. We did some motoring and some gorgeous quiet rippley sailing with just the jib up. Anchored just past the Warneet pier and had copious cups of tea for an hour or two.

We then pulled up at the pier, and I was thankful that M has had several solo manly adventures which have enabled him to be very good at pulling up alongside such structures without any assistance as I am both not very mobile or good at balancing at the moment. We wandered up to the park and Small Z had a brief swing before we headed back out – racing the tide to get back home. It sunshowered…

Sunshowering
Sleeping aboard.
Reading while the Kraken naps.

That was when Small Z suddenly hit the end of her rope and demanded I cuddle her. She then fell asleep for about an hour while M secured the boat and made hot drinks. If you are unaware, she never ‘falls’ asleep, no matter what her exhaustion level, so we figured her fever was kicking back in. The drive home was fairly dire, but it was still worth it – feeling crap on the boat was far better than feeling crap at home.

We have finished off our evening with M cooking an awesome roast chicken and his new amazing baked spuds – the secret of which is semolina used in a way he won’t divulge – and some stewed rhubarb. Judging from M’s ongoing symptoms, we are all going to be under the weather for the next few days at least. Better now than in six weeks time…

Sandy Parp

Small Brother and his Canadian arrived five days ago. He, from about minus five degrees and her from about minus twenty-five. They had a day of knocking about yesterday and today we all went out on the trimaran.

Small Z had gone to her first theatre show in town with her Nana. She had a blast – the show, a fancy lunch, fun in Fed Square and then, glory of glories – a mango gelati 🙂

Meanwhile, we got off to a late start. Can’t remember why. But by 1pm we were sailing out of the Hastings channel and off across Westernport Bay. Destination – Sandy Point. It was Small DB’s first ever sail. She was surprisingly amenable to being encased in her lifejacket.

We were going against the wind, so it took a while to get there. I spent most of the time entertaining her in the cabin as it was too windy for her above decks. Co-Captain M motor-sailed the final twenty minutes to speed up the journey.

Sandy Point is weird and beautiful. On several previous occasions we have called it the ‘Farting Beach’. Every time you step on the sand in the shallows, cascades of bubbles are released and your feet sink down further than you expect. Sandy Parp!

M and Small Brother went to investigate while we stayed on the sand, swatting away March flies. They came back and said they had found a lovely creek. We all walked back to it. The water was clear, mostly shallow with a few deeper pools. Small DB sat happily collecting shells, her fullbody suit meant that the March flies didn’t bother her.

The Canadian very thoughtfully collected lots of shells that had holes in them for the Smalls to use for threading at home. We lingered in and by the creek for a good hour before M got twitchy about where he’d anchored and wanted to go back to check on her.

We all followed. I was very tempted to go in for a swim – the weather was sublime – but there was a little breeze that put me off. I didn’t do it. M and Small Brother sorted out the anchors, while Small DB conked out on the Canadian and probably got about ten minutes of nap time in before I took her into the cabin, whereupon she awoke and clowned around for the rest of the trip.

One of my favourite things - sailing on a beautiful day with my bro, his girl, M and DB. #sunny #trimaran #westernportbay Thinking of my dad, he would like it out here today.

Tea and biscuits at sea. Different people steered. The Canadian told us of her family home on Lake of the Woods and we began pining to sail there…in summer – obviously. After we got back to the pontoon, M set about packing up the boat, while the other two went back to get the boat trailer. It was looking like being a long haul-out, so I piggy backed Small DB home.

Ah – the ease of just having one Small to look after! A bath, some scrambled eggs and finally sleep. We ate, what I recall, was an uninterrupted dinner!

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To me this post sounds incomplete, as I can’t include things that were on the mind of Small Brother and myself. However, I am happy to have a record of the day. Oh – and those last three pictures were nicked directly from moondriven

Chugging

A rainy morning turned into a sunshiney afternoon. My dad came for lunch and then he and M sailed the trimaran around to the boatyard for reasons too complicated to bother explaining…they involve the trimaran trailer, a trip to NSW and some sails. I’ll leave it there. Having had Small DB under the weather for two weeks has been like living in a vortex…

There was some scooting…

Scooting in the winter sun.

Some sitting around at the boat ramp…

High tide at the boat ramp.

And yesterday, unbeknownst to me, Dad had put my new front seat into the Humber. And it rocks…

My new front seat. Supersnipe.

Today I got some unexpected (but I suspect, sorely needed) self time – I had a cup of tea at a cafe while Small Z was at her sewing class, and now? As M is home at an hour that is most abnormal, he set me free…and I swooshed straight to the library to tend to my neglecto blog… 🙂

Family daysail. And the melt.

A family day. They are few and far between – and going to birthday parties all together (which is also rare) doesn’t really count. After the week of The Plague of the Vomit and Exploder Bum – M decided that Sunday would be one. A family day.

Sometimes we converse about things and come away thinking we have understood each other perfectly… and later there is that creeping realisation that we both just nodded at each other while thinking, “Great! He/She agrees with my ideas! Excellent! Relationships are SO GREAT!.” I was under the impression that we were helping him out by accompanying him sailing the trimaran back home from the boatyard, where it has been for about a month. I thought it was a NECESSITY.

I elected that we went to Bittern Market first. I have my spies out and now have dealers in quality woolly children’s socks, cheeses and chorizo. Splendid. I can only assume that M knew it was not a necessity but something we might all enjoy 😉 We did. Although it was chilly and windy.

We came home, ate soup from the slow cooker, and then M whisked us on our way – earlier that he had previously suggested. On the way it emerged that there was no Pressing Need to sail the boat home – but that the voyage was for the thrill and excitement of our Family Day. The rain pattered gently on the windscreen. I breathed deeply and thought the hell with it. We could do a bracing family cruise.

And we did! M had made us leave too early and we had to wait for the tide to come up the creek – but we killed time in our old stomping ground of Tooradin. Down near the playground there is now a lovely cafe with parquet floors to die for, and loose leaf tea served thoughtfully – these things COUNT when you are not a coffee drinker! (But for some reason I didn’t photograph the tea, just the coffee…*shrugs*)

Old Jetty Cafe - Parquetry
Old Jetty Cafe - Tooradin

We motored down the creek and then put the sails up in the Warneet channel. The Smalls were clipped on with ropes whenever they wanted to go out on the trampolines. They took turns steering. It was a bit cold, but it’s so rare that we have such an outing than none of us cared.

The Smalls at Sea
Ahoy, Small DB!
On the roof.
Zoe and M. At sea.
James & the Giant Peach in the back cabin.

I made a major tactical error. Small DB fell asleep down below…half standing up. WTF? I was worried we’d hit a wave and she’d be knocked to the floor. So I tried to put her somewhere else. ERROR. ERROR. ERROR.

Small DB conks out half standing.

She lost the plot – totally exhausted – and could only be bribed back to a wobbly sanity with biscuits.

When we got to the Hastings Pier she lost it and wouldn’t put her lifejacket on. It was impossible. We couldn’t let her roam freely, so I said (for some bizarre reason) that I would take her home. I said it blithely.

I cannot convey the difficulty and despair I felt over the following half hour. It is about five or six blocks to our house and she fought me the whole way. I had to put her down, or let her fall about ten times, because she was grabbing chunks of my neck or my hair and twisting. Screaming the whole time.

If I let her go, she ran in the direction of the pier. I kept thinking if I let her free she would just work it out of her system, but she didn’t. She ran halfway back, right across the park and ended up in the carpark of the boatramp. The carpark is busy. My little almost-three-year-old was running through it, crying, beside herself.

I had to run and run to grab her. Again she went rigid. I ended up carrying her in a fireman’s hold, slung around my neck, but at one point she hurt me so much that I unintentionally dropped her…luckily it was thick grass. I was so stressed, so exhausted, I just started bawling along with her…and had to pick her up again, and again.

It’s up there in my top five worst parenting experiences… And I am frustrated typing about it because I can’t properly communicate how bad it was. We got into the house, I dumped her on the floor, walked into the bathroom, stripped off my clothes, and stood under the shower for twenty minutes. Left sided stress headache. Got out. She was still upset. I laid down with her and she was asleep in half a minute. It all could have been averted if I’d had somewhere I’d been able to just let her go and know she was safe, but I had nowhere. I sent M out for wine. I’m over it now, but it was SO. VERY. HARD.

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M, of course, is concerned that all memories I will retain of our Family Day are ones of a small feral hysterical creature ripping out my hair and trying to twist off my skin. But that won’t be the case – because I have poured it all out here to soothe my psyche!! All I will remember will be the rippling water, new mainsail and the lovely cup of tea we had afloat… Right?! Right.

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