September 25, 2014

Into the Arafura Sea

With about 12 knots behind us we're making steady progress across the Gulf of Carpenteria. The shallow body of water at the top of Australia is notorious for delivering up a parting slap-so we've been watching the weather carefully-trying to get a sense of when conditions would be favourable. We waited out a few days of 15-20 forecasts, knowing that in the Gulf these come up more like 20-25 with nasty seas. But we're off.

Seisia was a good reintroduction to developing countries. Cut off for half the year by the wet season and only reachable by four-wheel drive, or once a month by bus, or twice a week by freighter it is the definition of remote. The kids, who spoke only a little bit of English, appear to be a mix of Aboriginal, Torres Straight and PNG cultures. They were fun to watch as they played and dove from the village pier. I think Maia was envious of the fun they had in the water-but we were too aware of the area's well-publicized crocodile attacks to let her join in.

My only disappointment was we never saw the wild horses. There were signs of them (and signs about them) everywhere. Letting us know if we fed them they'd get belligerent and steal food ("eat you bread"). Mostly we used the time in Seisia to catch up on laundry.

We still have several hundred miles left to Darwin. But we're taking the last bit in long hops. Tonight is our first overnight since arriving in Australia over 2.5 years ago.

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