Chris promised to take me to the tropics for my birthday. I’m picturing palm trees and pina colada’s, lounging around on an exotic beach. The reality; racing down 5m waves in rain squalls and a southerly buster as we hurtled towards the Tropic of Capricorn. The forecast 20kt winds were more like 30kt and we were headed for Cape Capricorn (so named because the tropic of capricorn cuts through the cape and out to sea). As I checked the chart and struggled up on deck in my wet weather gear and sea boots (never in my wildest dreams did I imagine that particular birthday outfit) I screamed at the long suffering skipper -”8 miles to the tropic of capricorn and there better effing well be sunshine, palm trees and pina coladas as soon as we cross it or else!!!!” Poor Chris – what girl wouldn’t want a southerly and the tropics for her birthday; I’m so ungrateful!
We got to Cape Capricorn in good time, I’ve calmed down a bit now and am picturing afternoon birthday drinks on deck, but as we rounded the cape we realised there was no way we could anchor there – the seas were way too rough. so we had no choice but to press on to Great Keppel Island – 40 miles away. I’m not proud of myself but I have to admit I was on full sulk now – all dreams of a tropical birthday washed away like the thundering rain on the deck. Eventually after four exhausting hours (especially for Chris) we anchored at Great Keppel. It was a bit rolly but we weren’t going any further – we were too tired and wet. Chris cooked a lovely birthday dinner and we turned in for the night, hoping to at least salvage a good nights sleep from a disappointing day. And we promised ourselves at day at the resort on Great Keppel the next day as a treat. No such luck, the night rolls were out in force. It’s just impossible to sleep when the boat rocks like that. After no sleep – two exhausted people decided enough was enough and we upped anchor and headed for the nearest marina at Rosslyn Bay, where we are now very comfortably ensconsed listening to the wind and rain outside and sitting as still as anything………..ah the serenity!