Growing up in Adelaide, I learned to sail off Adelaide’s beaches, and also down around Goolwa, mostly in the 14′ dinghy Dad built in the backyard.
Reading Swallows & Amazons books also made Goolwa a perfect real-life backdrop for my imagination.
In recent years I’ve returned to Adelaide to be with my Dad around Anzac Day. This year, he didn’t make it, because he was crook with another serious bout of cancer, this time in his throat. So over Easter (which coincided with Anzac Day this year), we took our Hartley 18, Woody, with us to Adelaide and even though Dad was too crook to come out with us, I hoped for a few sailing adventures that I could then record for prosperity, and also for my son Max’s future memories.
And it was perfect in so many ways. The water had returned to The Coorong, and for the first time in my life, I sailed through the barrage and down the Coorong.
Max was asleep down below, but the only sounds were the chuckling of waves under the bow of Woody, the occasional rush of the wind over the water and through the rigging of the boat coming off the dunes and the sea, and calls and cries flocks of different sea birds arcing out to us from the sky and sandbanks and reeds.
Later, sailing off Adelaide’s West Beach, wallowing downwind over a Gulf St Vincent swell, we sailed over the dark green and azure blue sea occasionally in company with a pod of dolphins.
I hope you enjoy the home movie.