Today was Decision Day in terms of continuing on down the coast or pulling in at Exmouth and having a rest. The next possibility for me in terms of stopping is not until Geraldton, several days sail away. The west coast is nothing like the east coast, in that marina's are few and far between - actually none between Darwin and Exmouth - and I can't anchor or attach to a mooring due to the whole disability thing. Based on the forecast weather, which is in a favourable pattern to get me down the coast, I've decided to go for it. If I pulled in at Exmouth I may miss this weather window and I don't know when it would come through with these easterlies again. I don't want to have to be bashing into southerlies or southwesterlies all the way down the coast, it would do me in. Apart from nursing a very sore backside from dragging it around, I'm not in bad shape and neither is Spirit. I'm still having issues with the batteries holding charge so am having to run the genset a lot more than I would like. She is also still taking water in through a fitting in the stern, and the bilge pump is playing up. Today I had to pull the floor boards up to get to it which took me forever, but was achievable. Have had some good sailing and made some good distance over the past day or two. Have passed a couple of oil rigs - massive structures - one of them was sitting in over 3000 metres of depth, which means that's how far down it was drilling, the mind boggles at the engineering involved.
I currently feel like I'm in a sailing garbage truck. Spirit stinks. Of course I don't throw anything overboard, and my stored rubbish and food scraps really went on the nose going through the heat. She's going to need a good airing by the time I get back! I imagine I probably smell similar by now. Good thing I'm on my own.
Just like to make mention of Josh Bell who owns the fibreglass repair business Greg's Marine outside of Fremantle. Josh first learnt to sail when he was crewing for me in races, on my Adams 10 "Caramia", several years ago. He had a baptism of fire on his very first time out when I managed to lay the boat on its side, mast in the water, in the course of the race. Out of 8 crew, only 3 were still on board when the boat righted itself - and one of them was Josh! He returned for more after that, and I knew he was a sailor at heart. Anyway, Josh managed to find time out of a very busy work schedule to send a couple of his staff down to do some urgent repairs to Spirit to enable me to get away on this trip back in March, for which I am very grateful. He's a great bloke who runs a good business and I wouldn't hesitate recommending him to anyone needing some fibreglass repairs done.