Nov 19 - Visibility returned after a couple of hours as we sailed to Broken Bay, going with the current for a good part of it. We called ahead to alert (ha ha, warn) Russell and Jan Meggitt that we were on our way. Russ said to meet them at their mooring ball where we would raft with TomKat for the night. We can always count on them for a good time. Kate was fishing off the back of TomKat as Jan relaxed with a glass of wine on the back deck looking beautiful as always. Several of their friends had joined them onboard for happy hour. Russell was leaning against the side laughing with a beer in his hand. This is so typical of these our wonderful Aussie friends. We enjoyed a really nice visit with them and then as darkness settled in we all retired to our own quarters to prepare dinner.
Sunday mid-morning, Nov 20th, we set off for Pittwater but as we turned the corner from America Bay out toward the entrance to Broken Bay we were engulfed in fog that was twice as dense as that coming out of Newcastle! This was scary. We could not even see our own mast. Eerily we could hear engines about us indicating powerboats nearby although we could see none of them until after we felt the roll of their wake. What I feared most was encountering another sailing yacht that we would not hear until it was upon us. We crept as slowly as possible keeping the radar active and all running and deck lights on. After 45 tense minutes we eventually began to see clear patches ahead, although the fog remained thick about us all the way over to Pittwater. What would ordinarily have been about an hour journey lasted a nerve-wracking 3 ½. We arrived at Pittwater in the mid afternoon, searched out a courtesy mooring and not unexpectedly ended up dropping the hook over by Currawong Beach. It is rainy, rainy, ugly.
Early Monday morning we moved across the bay to Palm Beach. When the rain diminished to a misty dribble we set off for shore. Gotta get those legs moving. We ambled over to the ocean side of Palm Beach and onto the set of one of the local TV dramas being filmed. This is the set for "Home and Away". Wow they were filming! We watched a few scenes being filmed and walked around past several of the actors. A few said "Hello" or "G'Day" to us. It was real cool hanging out right there on the set! There was no security to run us off, so I snapped photos of some of the actors performing their scenes, while employing evasive maneuvers to get away from the (literally) hundreds of flies that were besieging us. How in the heck do the actors stand it? This is awful, but it was fun. After a while, in spite of the thrill, we just couldn't take the flies any longer so we walked down the way to a little café that appeared to be serving some very nice food. We ordered and then sat down to immediately become savaged by the pesky flies again. Lunch was delicious but overshadowed by the annoyance of our uninvited guests. We set off to walk back to the other side of the bay and back to Palm Beach - then it started to rain. Again. We began hurrying back to the boat when Frank's flip-flop blew out. He was forced to walk the last mile barefooted. Tough guy. We didn't make it back to Destiny before the heavens heaped driving rain on us.
Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday we were absolutely rained in and getting tired of this. At mid-day we decided to make a break for Sydney. There is just no point sitting here boat-bound. So we weighed anchor and hit it for Sydney Harbour, arriving at Quarantine Bay in late afternoon. The weather was clear and beautiful!