Cold weather in DunedinDated: 19/04/08
Kay repairing sails
It's freezing down here!!! There was snow around the foothills of Dunedin this morning, but not on the boats.....yet. The cold southerly winds have been howling through the marina and not surprisingly the race scheduled for this weekend has been cancelled.
We really admire the "weekend sailors" down here. They are so keen and yet the only place to sail to is either inside the 12 mile narrow and shallow channel or out in the Southern Ocean, the closest island being Stewart Island, 140 miles SOUTH, across Foveaux Strait!!
Kay has spent the past ten days repairing sails for members of the Otago Yacht Club, where we are moored. These weather beaten sails are evidence of years of heavy sailing with no sail maker/repairer in the vicinity. A local tent maker has done his best to do basic repairs, enough to enter another race or two, and Kay hopes that she has helped a little to keep these guys out on the water for another season. You would think this to be an ideal place for a sail maker to set up business, and a few have tried, but we are reminded constantly of the Scottish heritage of these sailors!!!! The sails have been repaired so many times that many of them are patches on top of patches. You have to love their ability to make do with what they have!
However, in other ways they have been incredibly generous. A few of the Otago Yacht Club members set Kay up with a sewing machine and large floor space, where more old sails arrive almost daily. She has views of the harbour, the Yacht club and the marina. Paul and Robyn, club vice commodores, kindly lent us their car. It's no wonder we have stayed so long.
We have had a wonderful time, caught up on some work and met some great people including an old school friend of Kay’s, Lindsey Shields, singer and song writer. We even did some exploring inland, including a campervan trip to Nelson and a drive through the Catlins down to Bluff. Now it is definitely time to head north to a warmer climate. We are watching the weather for any wind direction that has south in it (and less than 40 knots if possible). Hopefully our next log entry will be from Akaroa, 140 miles to the north.
Meanwhile, our diesel forced-air heater is working overtime after such a beautiful summer (even down here). We are airing our winter woollies and are fine and happy and warm inside Mai Tai.