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Tuesday 27th to Wednesday 28th
27.03.12, Murrays Beach to Bonnells Bay

Lake Macquarie is a very pretty spot but just lately I have felt that something is missing. Then I realised that it is sand!!! The lake has lawns down to the water edge & then lots of sea grass in the shallow water. There are no sandy edges for paddling & only a few areas of buoyed swimming areas. Murrays Beach has a small area of "almost" sand where we were able to take off the boots & get some grainy sand between the toes. Felt good!!!!
Set off for a fishing expedition using the hard won squid as bait. We were just about to give it away after catching just one large useless leather jacket & a big pike eel which broke off on Nick's line & Nick decided just to use up his last bait. Finally, the hunter & gatherer delivers & there is fish for dinner tonight!!
Moved back to Bonnells Bay which gave us about an hour's motor sailing & there to meet us again was duck!!
Now Wed morning & considering going back to Frying Pan Bay to be ready when we get the call from Bruce the diesel mechanic.

12.04.12 | Col Cunnington
Very impressive bream, Nick, even if enhanced by holding it towards the camera ...

We're enjoying your travels.

Col and Janita
Sunday 25th Monday 26th
27.03.12, Bonnells Bay to Murrays Beach

We are still "marking time" waiting for the repairs to the Genset. We need to do a bit of extra motoring to keep the batteries charged. Discovered a very convenient shopping centre in Bonnells Bay which gave us a good walk too. Made a start on the re-varnishing of the cap rail & have sanded, masked & applied 2 coats across the stern. Now just another 90 feet or so to do. Well, we have started!
We have befriended a mallard. When we were last here we fed this little duck as she (too pretty to be a bloke) swam around the boat. She must have been waiting for our return as she met & escorted us to our achorage. She visits morning & night for her bread.
Nick talked to a fisherman on the jetty who told him about the chance to catch squid here. So the hunter & gatherer set himself up with light & jig & hauled in 4 squid. Still can't bring myself to cook & eat squid. Very happy to use it for bait though!
Monday morning, we moved to Murrays Beach which is a new development on the lake but in a bushland setting. Good walking tracks, facilities & jetty.
A very comfortable anchorage for the night, but despite trying the same method, no squid came aboard.

Saturday 24th
24.03.12, Dora Creek to Bonnells Bay

Happy birthday to Nanny (Brennan's paternal grandmother in Hawaii is 100 years old today)
Election day in Qld.
Beautiful sunny morning. Set out in the dinghy to explore Dora Creek. It is a quiet & peaceful area with the inevitable waterfront properties with boats moored in front. Pelicans & ducks live there too.
Did some shopping & re-stocked the wine supplies, but no fuel available for the outboard.
Back to the boat for lunch & the skipper had the temerity to comment on the standard of the meal served, saying that it was not up to the standard of the two preceding days!!!
Kayak trip to Lake Eraring (about an hour of paddling). The Attenborough moment delivered black swans, pelicans & a stately spoonbill. The lake abounds with mullet & we were hopeful that at least one of their leaps would end in the kayak. It seems impossible that cast nets are forbidden in the lake as the mullet are huge & impossible to catch on a line.
Red letter day....Nick caught a flathead but unfortunately it didn't measure up! But it was a fish!
As we came out of the lake we were hit with a south easterly wind & it was an effort to get back to Jepeda, with the increased wind & waves. To be sure of a calm night, we have moved back in to Bonnells Bay to the anchorage we used earlier in the week.

27.03.12 | Pam
Hi Boaties, I can tell that Nick is in need of more cheese puffs, about which I am sure he would not complain!!Wait for Tin Can Bay, Nick!! George and I once spent a lovely 3 days in Dora Creek, where the daughter of a sailing mate of George's lives...and yes! right on the water and with a boat moored at their jetty.....but not grand or up-market ! Off to Yamba on Monday, for about 10 days, with Mike and Sydney Jeremy.....Much, much love and hugs, Pamxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx
Thursday 22nd Friday 23rd
24.03.12, Wangi Wangi

Happy Birthday Isabelle
Thursday morning was time to move again & motor to charge the batteries. Had planned to go to Murray's Beach but made the decision along the way to go to Wangi Wangi. The jetty at the Wangi Workers' Club has good depth & facilities. We tied up, filled the water tanks & emptied the holding tank at the pumpout. The charge for overnight stay & using electricity is just $10 but you are expected to use the club services. We were lucky to be there in Seniors' Week & there were special meals. Had a huge & delicious steak & veges lunch for $8.
Went for a big walk around the area, filled gas bottle & enjoyed a hot shower at the club. Stayed until about 4pm on Friday to take advantage of the lunch special (pork chops with the works this time) & the shower. Left with fully charged batteries & the hot water tank charged up. We took advantage of the water on tap & caught up on the washing. Hate to admit it but then I did some ironing!! Sailed to our overnight mooring at the entrance to Dora Creek. A very peaceful spot.

Nick was there too!
21.03.12, Sydney

The old fella gets tetchy if he doesn't get an occasional look-in!

23.03.12 | pat duff
Oh diddums, Nick - Yes, you look very fit,handsome and of course nautical
Sydney for a day
21.03.12, Sydney

The best laid plans! Nick set the alarm for 0500hrs as we needed an early start to catch the bus! He woke at 0545hrs & we hurried with breakfast & dressing as we needed to leave the boat by 0600hrs. Just a little mix-up with real time & DST!
Caught the bus to Morriset at 0630hrs & the train to Central Station & then another train to Circular Quay arriving there at 0930. Caught the Manly Ferry (to Manly obviously) & strolled around there & had morning tea on the waterfront. Jeff was still 'available' & made plans to meet him back at Circular Quay. So back to the ferry for the trip. The ferry was crowded in both directions & lots of people out enjoying themselves at Manly. Doesn't anybody go to work anymore???? Wondered how Jeff would ever find us, but with the magic of "Find a Friend" there is no escaping. Enjoyed our time with him & then he left to drive to Canberra for a meeting.
We still had time to spare so wandered around the Rocks area & climbed the steps up to the viewing area at the bridge (not to be confused with the bridge climb). Then we reversed the journey back home, arriving at 1800hrs, feeling like real tourists. With thanks to NSW transport & being old, we were able to do all that travel for just $2.50 each. See, there is some justice after all!!!

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