We took a family out in Fannie Bay near Darwin to watch their son race in the A-Class Catamaran Championships. This is a picture of Jason and Karen on YOLO from our spectator spot out on the water.
Thomas Stuchbery, their son, was the Junior class champion. This is him as he came flying past our boat when we were anchored out to watch. These cats really fly and with a bit of wind, they spend a lot of time on one hull. We were told that if the mast hits the water (they capsize) they must buy a case of beer for the other participants. We saw 3-4 hit the water on the gusty days.Our 'tinny', the aluminum dinghy on the beach on a trolley at Fannie Bay. The Darwin Sailing Club provides use of the dinghy trollies as the tide goes so far out and its soooo hard to drag a dinghy across so much wet sand. Notice the 2 poles in the center of the photo. They are a careening grid, two I-beams joined by cross cables that the yachts use to beach themselves on the flat sand to clean the bottom or do chores on the underside of the boat. When the tide goes out, they are left high and dry til the next tide comes in. So you can get 6 hours or more of work done on the underside of your yacht without getting wet. Not many places have the perfect sandy beach to do this, so lots of folks took advantage of the beach to do bottom work.
A Fannie Bay sunset. We're just around the corner from Darwin proper and we have a short bus ride into the central business district from Fannie Bay.
The amphibious bus, the Croc. It drives around Darwin and then down a ramp right into the water. It circles around the bay and then back out. Pretty cool, but a local said the vehicle is tearing up the sea grass that the dugong used to come here to eat, so they are seeing fewer dugongs these days.
A shot of the Parap Saturday morning market, a short walk from Fannie Bay. Vendors here sell fruits and veges as well as prepared foods. We found a butcher here that sells "chilli buffalo sausages" that are the best substitute for spicy chorizo we've found. Usually the sausages are very bland, but we found the buffalo very lean and tasty. We haven't tried the kangaroo steaks they sell in the store, though.
Brown's Mart, an old stone building from 1870s that had made it through the cyclones in Darwin. It is now a music and restaurant venue.
Paper wasp nests hanging from a street sign outside the Northern Territory free museum. The museum has a lot of interesting Aboriginal art and artifacts. They also have a sound room that plays a recording taken during Cyclone Tracy in 1974 that virtually destroyed the city. The cyclone wiped out 60% of the structures in the town. The new buildings are built to a stricter building code, but we find the architecture in Darwin quite ugly.
An entry in the Lion's Beer Can Regatta held at Mindil Beach. Jason and I took the dinghy over and joined the record crowd to watch the silly race. This entry was mostly XXXX Gold beer cans plastered onto a floating structure. Their hats were all adorned with beer cans, too.