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Wednesday, January 27, 2010


The admiralty chart has notations all over it for magnetic anomalies. I'm not surprised - even the grit here is magnetic. I go outside with laptop and satphone to send these posts, shivering in the cold breeze and I have the satphone aerial extension fitted to the thing. The antenna on the end of the cable has a magnet underneath it (for attaching to the roof of yer ruggedized 4WD as you barge down the highway from Chatswood to do the weekend shopping...) and I sit on a rock outside the demountable and put the antenna on the black, gritty ground and when I have finished, there is a little crown of tiny black pebbles attached to the circular magnet. Good fun. Apparently there are places where even the GPS gets the habdabs although I don't see how it can happen.

We hope leave tomorrow, restocked with assorted goodies and, with luck, 25 - 30 days to Hobart. The plan is to stop in Hobart for a few days, slip Berri, change the prop and fix any glitches and put on some antifoul and a bit of polish and varnish - should be back in Sydney, DV etc, end Feb, early March. For the initiated, I hope to reinstate the Bash this year, date TBF, and if we make it in one piece, there will be a homecoming party in the park. However, predictions are dangerous and serve only to provoke the Examiner, so this is just the first wash on the canvas.

Today, I will spend the morning repacking the disaster that is Berri's interior and then we will start putting all the gear we have ashore back on board.

More later. Berri seems in good nick. Forecast for tomorrow is ok but for Friday, distinctly pearshaped. We'll leave and head north to give ourselves some room and to get as close to the top of the low as possible. Big high to the east if we can get across to it.

Envelopes part 2

Doing envelopes most of today.
For those who asked for one on the blog and for my family, this is what they will look like - suggest you print this because they won't arrive until the end of April. I hope we beat them back to Oz!
FRONT: Photo of Berrimilla with bow of L'Aventure in the background. Photo and envelopes courtesy M. Renaud Huez, interesting man of many parts, now the Postmaster here for a year, who set all this up for us.
Personal rubber stamp of Renaud Huez,
Two postage stamps - one of de Rochegude (as an Admiral) who first landed, with great difficulty, at Baie de L'Oiseau. The other of Charles Rouillon - much later but very eminent explorer - google him - just to keep a historical perspective. Stamps cancelled with special postmark.
Pete's and my signatures.
BACK: Official (rubber) stamps for L'Aventure, CNES - the Centre National des Explorations Spatiales and Meteo France, the French Bureau of Meteorology. CNES and MF provide most of the funding for this District. The CNES stamp was badly worn and the image is a bit indistinct.

Pete's envelopes are for his family and friends. They may be different. The choice of postage and rubber stamps is bewildering!

Sue, you got in by special dispensation. Too difficult to take pic of El Pinkathingykerg - huge wind and just too busy surviving to set it up. Will try tomoz when wind abates.

64 knots last night - elephant seals crashing earthwards all over the place, rather like the HGTTG whale, poor thing.

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