Our Life Afloat

September 2019                                                   August 2019 >>
Blog of Jack and Jude
explorers, authors, photographers & videographers

RUSH, RUSH, RUSH ~

These last six months, we’ve been locked away in a world from long ago when life seemed less complicated. Sailing around the world in our heads, surrounded by the freedom of open space and Nature brought a perspective difficult to find in today’s multitasking world of rush, rush, rush. Everywhere today, people are running about chasing who knows what. It’s madness. But that is what today’s world demands with massive population and only so much to go around and everyone trying to get their share. If we don’t rush, some other critter will take it.

Jason and Jerome with Red Sea Fishermen

Around the World in Ever Increasing Circles ~
Is right on schedule, ready for delivering in time for Christmas. Both Jude and I are polishing our masterpiece to shine like a mirror on times long past. We reckon life might have reached its pinnacle of happiness in that era, between the Vietnam War and 9/11, with humanity having more tolerance. Just look at the world now!

Our next book brings to life two lads on the cusp of manhood faced with life and death challenges in an unforgiving environment, one rarely known today: Inspirational, challenging and physical, fodder for minds shaping souls with courage and resolve. The Four J’s at the peak of physical and sailing prowess in a ship they had lived on nearly all their lives. Our latest offering covers one thousand and fifty days exploring places little known, two hundred and forty-seven big-sleeps at sea in a homemade thirty-eight foot ketch. No satellite navigation back then, we were sextant swinging navigators, but we had onboard one of the first portable computers and coded a navigational program that had a built in almanac!

The published paperback will reach approximately five hundred pages with illustrations and photos.
Register you interested here.
jackandjudith@gmail.com


TEASERS

Kilifi, Kenya ~

John Lomas on board Banyandah en-route to Maldives

When meeting John here in Kenya, he was secretive regarding his plans, and no wonder we learnt years later after stumbling across his novel, Smugglers Wind. But when talking with him next to his boat, while trying to follow his slow roundabout narrative leading me astray, I gazed into his pale blue eyes that still had a faraway look, and saw a flash of Vanesa. And that raced me back to Sri Lanka 1978, to a Japanese girl with those same pale blue eyes and dark straight hair cut in a bowl. Rather quiet and composed for a seven-year-old child. Next flashed images of Jason and Jerome, unstoppable, bouncing and bounding about on John Lomas’ yacht, enticing and teasing this reserved Japanese girl to come play their games, to swing from a halyard as if Tarzan and Jane before dropping into the water.

For a moment, let’s drift back to ’78 and live again this pint-size adventure when a young lady discovering a new life meets two lads discovering their first young lady. This tale begins on our return from an expedition staying with the accountant of a tea plantation in the Sri Lankan highlands…
[READ MORE]

Eritrea Gunship
Late one night lit by a half-moon, when beating towards Eritrean shores, a powerful beam of light searched us out as we made slow progress against a headwind.

When it locked onto Banyandah, machine-gun fire rent the air like a string of exploding firecrackers turning the night into a light show of tracers. Jude scared, as we both were, wailed, “Please don’t shoot us.”

Fetching the gun, I yelled for the boys to wake up, thinking it would be best to let this mysterious gunship see a family with children on board. I felt they’d not attack children.

Then I lined us up along the hand railing, so we all stood openly on deck as the searchlight illuminated an easy target for any marksmen. Suddenly extinguished, there a few boat lengths away, we could see this no-nonsense gunship silhouetted in the scant moonlight. Next a loudhailer broke the night’s silence.

“Drop your sails – come alongside.” blared across the wind in an Eastern European voice.

What a crazy notion!  I waved my arms in an emphatic “NO!”

For an hour that unlit, unmarked ship pursued us like a cat playing with a mouse; searchlight flashing across our sails, sporadic gunfire cracking the night air as they attempted to stop us. But we defiantly pushed on…
[READ MORE]
Click here to reserve your copy.

 



World Gone Mad ~
For what it’s worth, it seems developed economies all depend on people spending money they don’t have to buy things they mostly don’t need. We seem to require ‘growth’ at any cost, even though we live in a finite world. We’re using up the easily accessible resources as fast as we can. Someday this will change—because we’ll run out of potable water, veggies, and run out of room—or war will break out.

Constant growth requires more and more babies, and that coupled with the religious zealots means today’s society is having considerable problems even talking about reining in the runaway explosion of people needing resources. We hear a lot about climate change. But do we ever hear reduce world population? Any politician suggesting that would be out of a job. 

Different Future ~
Jack and Jude see a different future. One based on the evidence that no galaxy exists with all we want. No super-smart extraterrestrials coming our way to put all right. We have what we have—a dying planet choking on human waste. Like a virus, we’ll either kill the host, or it’ll kill us—either way we’re dead. Ding! – time for action stations. Time to shut up the politicians pandering to the wants of everyday folks, that only exacerbates our problem. It’s time for the young to rise in revolt because all us oldies will be dead leaving you one hell of a mess. 

So what do we do? ~
Having travelled most of the world, we know that the greater majority hold a belief in God, Jehovah, Allah, Bhagavan, Creator, call it what you like. This befuddles Jack and Jude because humanity is divided by spiritual beliefs based on what humans wrote centuries ago then rewrote. Humans are biased. We write what WE believe and want others to think.

The one truth above all this is the wonder, majesty and power of Earth and the creation of life. We humans are unique for a reason, and it is not to dominate, but to find harmony and balance within the creation so we can become one with its secrets, and maybe then we’ll attain the higher knowledge needed to understand the why? To reach universal nirvana, we need to tolerate each individual’s religious explanations and together worship Earth as tangible evidence of a force far more significant than our mortal souls. Join us in reverence of Earth and strive for balance and harmony. Then we will understand the why and how.

In a Nutshell ~
Believe in any deity you wish, but above all cherish Earth as the creation and Put Earth First in all decisions. That means we need to establish targets to reduce our impact by reducing our population.



 
 
 

Wildcare Friends of Macquarie Harbour and Waterways
Update on SJF Hut – We have a design ~

 
 
 
 
Since our last report, we have been jumping through hoops put in our way by the Director for Northwest Tasmania Parks and Wildlife Service, forcing us to go straight to the top because it is unsafe to wait for all hurdles to clear.

Publically Funded Plan ~
Both the TWWHA report and PWS report on the Lower Gordon will take far longer than is prudent considering as a place of refuge the hut at Sir John Falls is dreadful. Besides not being sound or offering safe accommodation, it is plagued by rats and snakes. It does not contain even the most basic safety equipment—not even a box of Elastoplast! That’s outrageous in these times when more of the public are venturing further into the wilds, which is easy to do with modern kayaks and self-propelled watercraft, and the Gordon River providing access to some of the most isolated rainforest in the state.

We’ll hear more later this month.


Kenn Reef ~
Perfect conditions for a sail out to heavenly Kenn Reef. Totally isolated in secure lagoon anchorage with great diving and fishing.
This video will show you everything and inflame your lust to leave the maddening world behind for a week or more of bliss.


Be sure to pick up a copy of our Coral Sea Cruising Guide for details of the entry into the lagoon.
 


Built to Fail — Our Financial System ~
Remember the Great Recession that began in 2008?
Our financial system was built to fail, failed spectacularly, and was rebuilt to die another day.
The Hindenburg had a short circuit. The Challenger had faulty O-rings. The Titanic had unsealed bulkheads. Our banking system had and has leverage and opacity. Consequently, it will collapse again.

Read The Big Con: Reassessing the “Great” Recession and its “Fix” with an open mind, you might understand just how fragile our economic system really is.

Multitasking – Good or Bad ~
I multitask. We all do it.  A 2015 survey showed that a majority of students who use social media, text or watch TV while studying think that they can still comprehend the material they’re studying. Read this: The High Price of Multitasking

Our Planet ~ The TV series ~
Our friend Russell Willis at Willis’s Walkabouts Australian Bushwalking Holidays recently watched the Netflix series Our Planet, narrated by David Attenborough. Clicking the link not only gets you to the series, it also gets you links to a variety of other resources including a wildlife app. It’s well worth watching.

Our World — As It Is Now And As It Soon Will Be

  • With Amazon Ablaze, Brazil Faces Global Backlash * 
    “The fires scorching the Amazon come amid growing concern that Brazil’s weakening environmental policies could jeopardise the country’s trade and foreign relations.”
  • The Ravaging of Amazonia * 
    A global treasure lies at the mercy of the smallest, dullest, pettiest of men.
    “what hurts me most is the bare idea of the millions of Notre-Dames, high cathedrals of terrestrial biodiversity, burning to the ground; all those layers of 100-year-old chestnut trees, vines, rubber trees, palm trees, banana plants, orchids, bromeliads, passion fruit flowers; the macaws, toucans, capybaras, sloths, jaguars, anacondas and ants that called them home. A monumental universe, turning, as I write this, into pasture and soy.”
  • Brazil’s Amazon has burned this badly before. This year’s fires are still bad 
    Less hype and more science. “When you clear-cut large areas of the forest, the air right around you gets hotter and drier, and it affects even rainfall patterns. The worry is if you start clear-cutting more of the Amazon, in theory, a tipping point could be reached where the rest of the forest dries out, too. If that happens, the idea is that the Amazon could flip suddenly from being a rainforest to being a dry savanna-like ecosystem. We’re not absolutely certain about it, but even that theoretical possibility is kind of terrifying.
  • Our neighbour to the north has problems.
      • Jakarta, the fastest-sinking city in the world explains one of them.
      • The answer, Indonesia names site of capital city to replace sinking Jakarta.
    “Choice of Borneo for £27bn project raises fears of forest destruction and pollution”
  • Summer on the Swollen Great Lakes * 
    “The lakes rose this year to levels not seen in decades. A 1,234-mile drive around one of them revealed what all that water has left behind — vanishing beaches, closed roads, new islands.”
    “The higher water, which set records this summer on some Great Lakes, could be part of an expensive new normal. Though water levels have always fluctuated, scientists have suggested that in the coming decades climate change could cause higher highs, with periods of intense rainfall and snow, and lower lows, with times of warmer temperatures and increased evaporation.”


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Comments

Our Life Afloat — 6 Comments

  1. Hi Jack and Jude
    We are in Peru, before going to Bolivia and still remember our visit to you.
    Always a pleasure to read your stories.
    We wish you the best.
    Dane et Éric (France)

  2. Hi jack and Jude
    Another great blog.Thanks once again.We will be back in Tassie in our new home MV Sealeaf this summer. A look at the west coast and Port Davey are again on the rough plan.If you and Jude are down there again ,we sure owe you both a beer.
    Health and happiness to you both
    Brian and Sandra Dorling
    MV Sealeaf

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