Travelling from Euroa to Station Pier, Beacon Point to Bass Strait
September 10, 2013
Wet night, cool wind. 7 - 16 degrees
Quick look around Euroa township and off to Melbourne. Williamstown via Western Ring Road and leave a note at John and Marianne’s place. Down to the waterfront as a fleet of tall ships have just arrived.
I have a new rule for this trip. If anyone advertises ‘The Best Coffee in ......’ – don’t go there. It is always bad! Tried a coffee at Cafe Carino and it’s OK. Bit put off by all these retirees in lycra on bikes. It’s an invasion – They’re everywhere – drinking coffee.
Stroll out to the dock to look at the beautiful old ships.
Here comes the paranoia. We want to go into the city but where do we park the car so that our bikes (which are protected by a total of 6 padlocks, an industrial cable and a heavy gauge chain) and our travel possessions including laptop, cameras, all my GoPro accessories, ukulele, chocolate supplies, etc. are still there when we get back? Plus we don’t want to be too far away from the port so that some traffic snarl doesn’t stop us getting to the ship. We decide to park at Williamstown outside someone’s house so that it looks like we are inside just visiting. I covered the bikes with a tarp!
In to town only to find they have changed the ticketing system. We have to buy a new MyKi card ($6 each) but that lasts forever??? Then we put on $7 each which gives us unlimited travel for the day. A bit of spending in the outdoor shops around Little Bourke Street. Finally back to Williamstown for a quick catch up with Marianne and Elisa although John is still at work. They have sold and packing up house to move nearby.
I think this lamp has some kind of magic power.
Made our way through arvo traffic to Port Melbourne. Gates open at 5pm and boarding 6pm for 7.30pm departure on the Spirit of Tasmania 1. We learnt from last time that it is best not to line up until after 6 or you just sit in the car, so we park the car in ‘a safe spot’. Plenty of good parking around the local streets. Pack our overnight supplies in a small bag and go for a waterside walk while we wait.
Back to the car and through the gates around 6.15. I knew I had to hand in gas canisters as they get stored elsewhere on the ship. Except the security guy made me empty out my Shellite container and fill with water, even though I had checked on the website that it was OK.
I got the laptop out once we were in our cabin (7026) to check the weather. Interesting..... Firstly, back home they had 32 degrees with bushfires, Hobart is freezing with snow down to 300 metres and Bass Strait has gale warnings with rough seas. One of the crew said not to worry and that the captain only makes announcements about the weather if it is really bad. We left Station Pier at 7.30pm into the calm waters of Port Phillip Bay, although the wind was really blowing outside. Then the captain made an announcement. When we would leave through the heads around 10 pm, we would experience bad weather. “Please do not go out on deck”. We took our travel sickness pills and attempted to go to sleep. We didn’t. Dead on 10pm the rock’n’rollin began. Heavy swell off the starboard side and quarter, banging into the side of the ship. Spray coming right up over the ship – and our cabin window which was on level 7 above the waterline.