Galactic at anchor in Lyttelton Harbour. Waiting for a southerly wind.
"You're a long way from home."
We've been hearing that a fair bit lately, as people notice our hailing port and stop for a quick chat. A kayaker said it to us yesterday, and for the first time, my initial reaction was that we aren't far from home at all - this is our home!
We've been in Lyttelton, the port for Christchurch, for more than a week now, waiting for a suitable wind to continue moving north. Lyttelton isn't the first place that you'd choose to be cooling your heels. Getting into town involves a longish walk through an industrial zone, which is less than ideal with a two-year-old. And the water is both muddy and cold - not the most inviting for a swim.
Alisa has been chafing, just a tiny bit, at our idleness. The annual Abookire get-together, which we have missed for several years in a row, is going on right now. We had decided to miss the get-together again this year in order to have time to go down to the subantarctic. But when we got to Akaroa we were hoping to make last-minute arrangements to get to the event, but that didn't work out. Thoughts of family visiting each other on the other side of the world don't make it easy to bear an enforced idle spell.
For the most part, though, we're very Zen about the pace of travel on a sailboat. It happens when it happens. And until it does, we retreat to our family life in the cozy and self-sufficient confines of our home, set down somewhat anonymously wherever we happen to be.
And now, the southerly wind is coming - two days of SW 25 are forecast, so we're poised to depart for Kaikoura, where there are meant to be sperm whales...
Hiking back from town.
A bus ride into Christchurch was our big outing for the week.
The Canterbury Museum was a huge hit with the boys.
A walk around the CBD was sobering. Two years on, the earthquake that killed 185 people is a vague memory for me. But the CBD is still largely cordoned off, and evidence of the destruction is everywhere. The agony of Christchurch goes on...
More on the Southern Ocean soon...