04 February 2019 | The Broadwater, Gold Coast, Australia
Alison and Geoff, SE wind, sunny and showery
Saraoni and Sundari next to each other by Australia Fair in the Broadwater.
Sundari has been paid for and we are now ensconced in relative luxury on board, with poor old Saraoni close by in the Sea World anchorage, aka Bum's Bay.
The first day didn't get off to such a good start, as we hadn't had a chance to familiarize ourselves with Sundari before having to leave the Palazzo Versace hotel marina the morning after signing the Bill of Sale. Alison rather courageously edged the boat out of the marina and we did a quick trip up to the Seaway entrance and back to the Australia Fair anchorage.
We noticed that the engine was leaking oil from an oil seal which should have been replaced before final purchase (the mechanic didn't think it was leaking).
The roll up dinghy which we had spent time rolling down to the boat with the owner fell apart on the deck when we tried to blow it up.
The echosounder display was unreadable making it a bit scary moving around these shallow waters.
The freezer wouldn't work.
The 3 hp Yamaha outboard that came with the boat either shot off like a startled goat or chugged along at snail's pace.
Then we decided to make a move up to Runaway Bay, only a few miles to the North, a less crowded anchorage. We decided to singlehand both boats, and coordinate our movements with Captain Al in front on Saraoni and Captain Geoff following on Sundari. We started off well, with anchors hoisted and Sundari's genoa catching the breeze. The newly reconditioned autopilot didn't work with Sundari careering off at an angle as soon as the auto button was punched!
Saraoni's engine stopped, just after a large launch passed us, with its usual huge wake.
Alison dropped the anchor right in the middle of the channel and Sundari anchored nearby in the Sea World anchorage. We had found an abandoned fibreglass dinghy on the beach a day before so were able to get between each boat by swapping the two dinghies with the roll up a chuck out. The engine problem was soon solved - a rag had fallen on top of the engine and got sucked over the air intake, starving the engine of air. We decided to lick our wounds and stop where we were.
Things have improved since then. We have fixed two seacocks, got the saltwater pump working, worked out what was wrong with the freezer, got the old navigation instrument that the owner thought was broken (back when he bought it in the U.S.) working, giving us wind and depth information, fixed the weather display, calibrated the autopilot which now works well, ordered new solar panels, a wind generator, a hand held VHF radio (the old aerial had blown off the top of the mast a year ago) and carted hundreds of items over from Saraoni, filling up most of the nooks and crannies on Sundari.
Have we done the right thing? Well, Sundari is a lovely, big boat and very comfortable. No doubt there will be things to improve on it, but hey, where can you buy a 3 bedroom home with a view of the sea and no rates, rent or hotel bills to pay (so far!) for what we paid for Sundari?
As soon as we get everything off Saraoni of any value, the next step is to concentrate on cleaning it and getting it ready for sale. It looks like a few weeks yet! Luckily, we have had some fantastic weather, although very hot in the day time. The same huge, almost stationary, high pressure systems that have been hanging over Australia and giving it some of the hottest temperatures on record have given us very benign weather. Hope it continues for the next couple of weeks.