Since owning Blue Tale, we’ve only had one guest that stayed onboard for a few days; most visitors only spend a few hours on the boat but never seem to want to stay longer… is it the small space? Or the fact that our toilet (referred to as the head) needs to be flushed manually and requires a small lecture on its use? It was a very special occasion when one of Rob’s sisters, Lesley, made the long flight over from Toronto to come and stay with us for a few days on Blue Tale to enjoy sailing around the southern part of the Gulf Islands.
Lesley arrived on February 25th at the Victoria International Airport, which is actually located in Sidney, BC, not Victoria and is about 25 minutes from Tsehum Harbour where we were anchored and waiting for her arrival.
After a brief dinghy ride to our boat, the first order of business was to show her around, go through safety procedures, how to use the freshwater foot pumps, and of course the head! After living on the boat for a year, I’ve forgotten how intimidating it can be to be on a boat and to even use the head.
After a warm bowl of homemade chili (it was raining again), we set of for Ganges, about 16 nautical miles north (nm) from Tsehum Harbour. Unfortunately, Lesley slept for most of the 4 hours it took us to get there; because of her fear of seasickness she took some fast acting Gravol that put her out for the trip. We only stayed the night and enjoyed a pint at the pub. The following morning we enjoyed a nice walk around town and then we pulled the anchor and set off to Montague Harbour, one of our favourite locations in the Gulf Islands and also an easy anchorage, as we only needed to grab one of the marine park mooring buoys.
Friday morning (February 27th) we left Montague Harbour early, as we were concerned with the high wind weather forecasted. Once we entered Samson Channel we sailed but the predicted strong winds never came. We headed for Port Browning and anchored for the night. Port Browning was our opportunity to get clean showers and a nice walk in; however, that night we experienced the worst anchorage we’ve ever had to date. We stayed here the week before in almost the same spot and it was great, but this trip, even though the weather was really nice, we had a combination of north winds, with south swells rolling in, and the tidal action causing the boat to pitch sides ways making it very uncomfortable. We felt very much like being an insect in a jar and being shook around by a small child. Lesley took it in stride, took some Gravol and went to bed; she woke the next morning refreshed and ready for some coffee. Rob and I did not enjoy the same bliss as his sister as we were up half the night worrying if the anchor was going to drag or not. Luckily, the anchor stayed and Saturday morning we headed back to Tsehum Harbour. The sun was out, the wind was out and we had a wonderful sailing day for our last day together.
Our boat might be small but it is very cosy and actually quiet comfortable for three people….for short periods of time. Rob and I are still amazed that a couple with 3 teenage kids sailed around on another Westail 32 for 7 years! ~Sophia & Rob