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The bejesus

by John Curnow, Editor, Sail-WorldCruising.com 6 Sep 2018 10:00 UTC
Typhoon Jebi above Japan. © StormGeo

Before we end up looking like some trashy newsprint rag, I just want to quickly say that there were numerous occurrences this week that did kind of scare the proverbial out of me. The first had to be the material from western Japan and typhoon Jebi, which followed on from Jongdari not long beforehand. Seeing a small coastal oiler repeatedly smashed against the bridge to the airport was something else.

There were the 100+ cars on fire at the docks, caused by an electrical short in all the water. Millions lost power, and it was all on top of heavy rains and bunch of meteorological occurrences in the last while. That's all pretty terrifying, especially if you were there.

Now the next one may have been labelled an 'positively buoyant inert training mine', but I reckon if you were on the waterways of Puget Sound in Washington State recently, and came across this bobbing along, you'd be happy if you were in a GRP boat. You'd be even more thrilled if you had seen it early and stayed well away!

The USN had placed it in the water in 2005 for exercises based out of Torpedo Town, USA (aka Keyport), but the sight of one on the surface between Brownsville Marina and Bainbridge Island may well have required a speedy apparel change. Certainly would have for me...

The next one was when I saw someone asking online for help with crocs in the Whitsunday Islands of Queensland, Australia. All animals must be treated with respect, but the saltwater variety requires something else all together! It is true that they do not mill around the offshore islands as much as rivers, estuaries and creeks, but as they are protected, with their numbers exploding as a result, and given that they are territorial, then care is always required. The thing to note is that they generally eat every seven days. If you are in an anchorage for more than a couple, the chances of you closing in on one of their food days increase geometrically. It is just mathematics...

At least in the islands the water is pristine, so you can see them. Always scour the beach for belly slides, but alas, they are a lot better at hiding, than you'll ever be at spotting. Don't worry, heaps of tourists go there, and no real problems exist at this time of year. You should also look out for the bullies and even Tiger sharks. So yes, vigilance remains supreme (and a fully licensed .22 makes it even more paramount).

Over the even warmer months, stingers (not the US Military version) and jellies make it more perilous, but a über-fashion statement slinky suit will help with that. Ah yes. Australia. If it doesn't bite you, it will kill you...

Tacking. Some material is sneaking out about Bavaria, remembering that the 'deal' was always to be completed in September. Giebelstadt is operating once more, with 24 boats due to be completed this month ahead of/during the final announcements (and we will see if Bavaria appear at Cannes as promised). The material from the bidder has been tabled, but an NDA is certainly keeping it all very hush-hush for now.

Originally, it was thought that maybe monuhull and multihull would be split, with the French collecting the latter. It could well be that the Italians have come in and gazumped the lot. 'Continuation and expansion' get used a lot when referencing the deal with an Italian luxury yacht giant. It all seems to be legitimate, but there is nothing still completely ruling out other known interested parties, such as Groupe Benteau, who very much still have an appetite for expansion themselves.

It never pays to speculate, but if the Italians are what would seem to be the most likely candidate, for they have been steadily acquiring brands over the last 15 years, then it is a long way down from their lofty heights! Long, long way... Hopefully all will be clear soon.

In the meantime, a new owner was found for the wonderful new Bavaria C45 that made it to Australia, which was one of the last boats out of the yard before they closed for Summer vacations. We were very lucky and went out on it for her maiden voyage, which you can see in this video -

I definitely have been very fortunate to do a lot of boat reviews of late. Some of which were very much highest priority on my to-do list. The new Fountaine Pajot Astréa 42 was absolutely one of them, and it did not let me down. Key elements had to be the new aft area, which has become so useful and pleasant with its new moving swim platform and BBQ.

There are style elements like the dreadnought bows and reverse sheer making it much less slab sided, and up to around 40 degrees AWA she sails really well. You do think that she has reset the scales firmly to her advantage. Check out our video for yourself.

OK. Today you will find that we have information for you from Mission Océan as they wander through the Caribbean, the ARC World Rally Fleet, gear from Musto, turtles, Hobart and the Wooden Boat Show, plastics and the environment, whales, the Race for Water and energy production, as well as much more.

So you see, there are stories, lessons, inspirations and history to regale yourself with. Please do savour... We're really enjoying bringing you the best stories from all over the globe. If you want to add to that, then please make contact with us via email.

Remember too, if you want to see what is happening in the other Hemisphere, go to the top of the www.sail-worldcruising.com home page and the drag down menu on the right, select the other half of the globe and, voila, it's all there for you.

In the meantime, do you love being on the ocean? Well remember to love them back too. They need our help. Now more than ever! Until next time...

John Curnow, Editor, Sail-WorldCruising.com

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