28 March, 2007
Being an only child I have not enjoyed the company of an extended family. It did not help that my father left England and settled in South Africa. I then added a few miles and migrated to Australia. Out of the blue and letter landed on my doorstep....Are you Harry the son of Harry who was the son of Harry. Yes but actually it was Henry in place of Harry. Well this opened up a Pandora's box of relatives I knew about on the family tree but had never met. On Sunday about 42 descendants of the Watson Smiths arrived to say Hi. Was I blown away. I have captured some photos at http://picasaweb.google.com/harryws20
The gathering was great. Thanks Jan and Ian for organising the party.
We arrived in London on our way to the Med. It was exiting to do all the sights especially to visit Greenwich where I stood with one foot either side of the prime meridian. It was only two years ago I sailed across the 180 degree date line from west to east near Fiji and now I stand again with one foot in each hemisphere. I was also able to set my watch to the exact GMT.
The weather was cold with snow in the air but it cleared to give us three beautiful days. We visited the art galleries (Portrait, national and Tate) and some of the museums. It was also a great thrill to have dinner with my old school friend of 45 years Richard and his wife.
From London we travelled to Worcester to visit family- Jan and Mike.
08 March, 2007
The picture shows Malua on Erasmusgracht at S 18°42' W 115°48' I received an email from Captain Westerdijk who has changed the position of the yachts to optimise the deck space. The Australian stevadores could learn a few things from the experts.
02 March, 2007
After loading Malua on the Erasmusgracht I could turn my mind to organising my trip in the Med. General advise is move on to your boat before you set sail so you can tie up all the loose ends. Well sending the yacht away and still living in you home is the next best thing except that when you find all the things you forgot to load on to the boat. You soon realise that the 20kg baggage weight limit on the aircraft to the Med will be blown away by the large admiralty pattern storm anchor you found behind the garage door! Thank goodness I have three other types of anchors on Malua.
The photo is the plot of Malua crossing the Pacific thanks to the Erasmusgracht Master recording it on the ship tracking site. http://sailwx.info/shiptrack/ I will continue to follow the vessel right into
Planning a trip before embarking on it is a novel experience for me. I have in the past set off and taken each turn as they came along. No specific planning, just go with the flow and what looked good at the time. Fun, exciting and you meet the unexpected but what did I miss? With the help of the Internet, Google earth, cruising guides and friends this current planning session is a great experience - almost as good as the actual trip.
At this stage I have redirected mail, purchased insurance, cancelled subscriptions and deliveries, serviced cars, redirected mail, set in motion end of financial year actions and cleaned up all those loose ends I never quite got round to do. Unfortunately it reminds me of what my father did before he moved from this earth.
We leave Oz on 19 March bound for