Another day in Lockdown, now its three weeks – it feels like three months.

I find I keep humming the Freddy Mercury lyrics ‘I’m going slightly mad’.  On the positive side, there must be worse places to be locked down.  Outside my back door I have the Marlborough Sounds in all their glory all to myself apart from a few mussel farmers.

Early morning scene, Kenepuru Sound. Photo Ray Penson
Early morning scene, Kenepuru Sound. Photo Ray Penson

Having grown tired of the limited scenery at Long Bay I have moved across to Portage Bay.  This bay is not so sheltered but has the big advantage that I can get ashore and stretch my legs.  Being confined to the boat without any sign of human activity is extremely boring.  At Portage there is a road, some houses and the occasional sound of human activity.

My lockdown days are taken up with odd jobs, reading, cooking, eating and the occasional beer.  The subject of food never seems to be far from the front of my mind.  I spend a lot of time thinking about what to eat and what to cook.  Every two or three days I bake bread, my new speciality is scones.  I have become very proficient in turning out first rate scones.  Beer consumption has increased, mainly because I am at anchor or on a mooring.

This afternoon I went ashore for a walk around. Portage is a nice little place, there is a hotel here with bar and restaurant, looks very inviting – but of course everything is shut down.

I took off up the road towards Torea Bay which is on the other side of the hill on the Queen Charlotte Sound.  Not very far up the road I realised that my deck crocs are not the best walking shoes and decided that a couple of miles would be enough.  At the top of the hill, a place called the saddle, I came across the Queen Charlotte Track and a war memorial for the first and second world war.  Not quite sure how they go together.

Memorial on Queen Charlotte Track. Photo Ray Penson
Memorial on Queen Charlotte Track. Photo Ray Penson

From the saddle I caught a glimpse of Queen Charlotte sound.  Maybe, if the weather is nice tomorrow, I will take my walking shoes and walk across to Torea Bay.

On the way back to Portage Bay a guy passed me on a bike.  The first person I had seen since coming ashore.  He seemed surprised to see me, he swerved and moved to the other side of the road, mumbled a g’day and sped away.  I saw no cars moving, very quiet.

It seems the birds are enjoying the lack of human activity.  They are everywhere, lots of birdsong, they have temporarily claimed the road as their territory.  The fantails are active as usual putting on a show as soon as I came into view.

Portage Bay. Photo Ray Penson
Portage Bay. Photo Ray Penson

I have been reading quite a bit.  Just finished ‘Venturesome Voyages’ by Captain Voss.  I picked the book up at a second-hand shop, the story is over a hundred years old and a very interesting read.  Captain Voss was obviously an exceptional seaman, what he advocated with regard to sailing so long ago is still very relevant today.  My book stock is seriously depleted, I need to get some new books or will soon end up reading the engine workshop manual.

Truce at Portage Bay. Photo Ray Penson
Truce at Portage Bay. Photo Ray Penson

In Portage Bay I am getting excellent radio reception and a strong phone signal.  Nice to have a 4G phone signal and access to internet, makes lockdown a bit more bearable.



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