Writing is all about new experiences.
It was going to be a quiet Easter munching chocolate and catching up with odd jobs and chores when the mobile phone rang. Paul revealed that good friends of his, David and Belinda were taking their boat out on Western Port Bay for the day and would I like to go.
I couldn’t grab my boating bag, jacket and sunglasses fast enough. An amazing opportunity to feel the wind in my hair while sailing somewhere I’d never been before.
The boat was superb and in calm seas, perfect for a newby sailor like me, we left from Hastings Marina and, using the motor, sailed up the snaking channel to Western Port Bay. I learnt about the extensive mudflats that catch many a sailor unawares. David said, ‘there are two kinds of boats on Western Port. Those that get stuck in the mud and those that will’.
The bay is a haven for birds and wildlife. We saw flocks of swans, pelicans, penguins, and a friendly seal waved his flipper as he swam past. all we needed were for some dolphins to come our way.
To read more about the history etc of Western port Bay I’ve added this link. Belinda produced an amazing lunch of fresh salmon, crusty bread, salad and cheeses. Bobbing on a dead calm sea without a breath of wind we talked about moving towards a special fishing spot not far away before heading home. David and Paul winched up the anchor but before we had gone any distance the wind started to blow and was soon strong enough to turn off the engine and use the sail.
Wow…the wind picked up, the boat heeled over and I felt as if I was in the Sydney to Hobart yacht race. We raced through the water, wind streaming through our hair and David gave me the wheel.
Feet planted firmly apart I wanted to yell into the wind, ‘Ship ahoy’. As the wind got stronger, the waves higher, the tilt of the boat more pronounced I handed the wheel over to Paul whilst David worked the ropes controlling the sail. We tacked back and forth across the bay until we had made our way back to the channel and the Hastings wet pen that was home.
Thank you, David, Belinda and Paul for sharing with me an amazing, exhilarating day.