TI. Day 35

Baly had another day at anchor in Seisia harbour while we did a day trip to Thursday Island on the ferry. It made sense not to take Baly over as we saved a days trip each way to get there and we avoided quarantine were they take your meat, dairy products (dont like giving up my cheese), fruit and vegies. It is also a lousy anchorage at TI, lee shore, poor holding and big tidal currents.

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We were very impressed with TI, it was tidy, surprisingly clean reminded us of Port Vila and Papeete and differed from Port Moresby because of its cleanliness and lack of barred windows.  Locals are friendly and helpful. The pic below shows the view from Grass Hill Fort, which was built in the 1890s to protect the coal bunkering barges from Russian attack.

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The foreshore has some lovely old colonial buildings,  reminiscent of W. Somerset Maugham, most are government occupied.

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We visited Pearl Seafoods which exports live crayfish to China. In my crayfishing days in Tasmania we used pots but these are all caught by diving. Postscript: we learnt in Fremantle that reason they dont use pots is the northen crays are vegetarians so won’t enter pots looking for food.

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Received a call from #1 daughter Ela L’il Bear telling me about their warmest day for a while in Canada, all of 12 degrees. Had sundowners onboard Makani Kai, with Bob and Helen, joined by Gary and Lynne plus Bruce and Kay.

Tomorrow we leave for the 350 nm leg across the Gulf of Carpentaria, we will be sailing 24 hours a day and standing watches. So we will be out of phone/internet range for about three days until we reach Gove.

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