Day 9 Thursday Island – Darwin

securing the anchor cable

Latitude; 11°09.2’S

Longitude; 132°35.7’E

We proceed to drop the anchor at Croker Island at 1215 and then we send the crew aloft to furl the sails, there seems to be far too much fun coming from the Main mast watch as they sing and furl the sail. It is our first anchorage since we have left Thursday Island over a week ago. The Island has a big bay and although the Island has a dry and aridness about it, the amount of fauna & greenery is surprising on an Island so far North. We have permission to go ashore and are expected by the local school Mamaruni.  It is a choppy landing but the beach has
white sand and then a few meters away where the track starts it quickly turns to red sand. We start approaching the village when a van pulls up; it is some of the teachers and children from the school. We are fortunate enough to get a guided tour around some of the Island and its community.

Just as we finish our tour we spot some of the crew and much to our dismay Kate is sat in the back of the police van, thankfully it is just for a photo opportunity. As we meet people we are constantly reminded not to go swimming in the sea, as there are hundreds of crocodiles on the Island and big ones as well. There are a lot of happy crew back down at the beach after visiting the community and the shop to replenish their lolly stocks.

We are anchored a mile away from the shore and the wind is blowing onshore, making the rescue boat run back to the ship a very slow, bumpy, wet one.  It takes a while to get
everyone back to the ship but once everyone is back there is lots of talk about our visit and how grateful we are for all the hospitality provided.

Kate in the police van

Another day another Birthday, this time it is the legendary Peter Sharp. Not quite 21 but certainly just as boisterous. Both Peter and George are on dish duty this morning making it a very comical, musical and if not slightly surreal breakfast.

Captain Ross goes back over to the Island to go and give a talk at the school about the ship and our voyage so far. We also take over a few tokens of our appreciation for all the help and allowing us to see their beautiful Island and receive some fantastic art work and bracelets in return.

By 1130 all those from ashore are back onboard and so we start to precede weighing anchor for our next destination.

All’s well.

The ship from Croker Island