Sunday, June 3, 2012
Well, I should really know better than to post such a vague notion, such an unformed whiff of a plan, online. But here goes.
We've been talking a lot about future sailing plans lately. And our recent visit from Rex and Louise, who are based on Lord Howe Island, got us thinking about that place, which we've been wanting to visit for a few years.
Lord Howe is the home to the southernmost coral reefs in the world, and has the reputation in Oz as being a purely wonderful place, a gem lost in the great watery expanse where the Tasman Sea meets the southwest tropical Pacific. As we begin to contemplate the end of our stay in this corner of the world, we realise that if we want to see Lord Howe, we'll have to make it happen soon.
The only trouble is that we were already hoping to visit Port Davey, in southwestern Tasmania, during the next austral summer, as well as the Auckland Islands, in the New Zealand subantarctic. Visiting all three of those place in a single summer would be tough - it would involve a lot of time in the Tasman, dealing with uncooperative prevailing winds and waiting for a low to come along.
But, a summer spent visiting three places that are meant to be as unique and wonderful as those would make for a pretty appealing adventure. So the idea is starting to turn in our heads. No guarantee that it'll happen, of course. But just talking about the possibility got us excited, it made us feel that old magic of planning a voyage to somewhere wonderful and strange. And pretty soon we were talking about the austral winter after that, and realized that, inshallah, we might find ourselves back in the tropics exactly a year from now.
Sailing to distant places will never be easier for us than it is now - our whole lives are organised around sailing, we have a good boat that is ready to take us places, and (touch wood!), there's nothing much holding us back. So it was great to feel the excitement of it all coming back to us, to feel the anticipatory joy of setting out, to know that, nearly five years into the life afloat, we're not at all jaded by it all.