The Shipping Forecast
04 April 2018 | Canoe Cove, Fortesque Bay, Tas
Down here in Tassie, as the Aussies call it, it's prudent to keep a weather eye open.
Ours had been half shut for the last few days as we had been continuing our exploration and circumnavigation of Tasmania by Mercedes Benz. When you've got 180 horsepower under your right foot and boutique hotels booked ahead, who cares how windy it might get.
And so, back in our reality on board Time Bandit this morning after an early start to return "the motor", we tuned into Tas Maritime for the PM forecast.
"North to north west fifteen to twenty. Swell two metres and sunny."
"Wait a minute" methinks. That would do for us. So, cast off the lines, and whoosh, we slipped from 180 bhp to our modest 62bhp.........because.......not a sign of fifteen to twenty, in fact, hardly a breath and what wind there was was from the south. On the nose. Where else?
It all reminded me of a time in that land far, far away, and indeed, a long, long time ago when we were out on the west coast of Scotland, with m'aunt and m'uncle, doing the Tobermory race. It was early morning and the fleet diligently had its ear to the VHF for the shipping forecast. It wandered around the sea areas finally reaching us and said something like, "Malin Head to Stornoway, southerly force 5 to 6, veering south west later. Rain. Visibility poor."
Like startled rabbits, pretty much the whole fleet stuck their heads outside to see flat calm and blazing sunshine.
At that point, a broad Glaswegian accent comes over the VHF saying, "Ho...Hen. Huv ye no looked oot the windae?
That about sums up weather forecasting and it's amazing how little it's changed in thirty years.
( OK. Maybe longer).