Saturday, May 3, 2008

Shiriri Saga #14 Underground.

The figurehead with her first white undercoat.

The summer of caring for my recovering mother is finished but we still have months to go before the doctor can be sure that Heather`s angioplasty is a success. We hear of an underground house that needs house sitting until the following Spring that is near the bay where we can keep Shiriri for the winter. We move in and look around at this interesting design.

Large windows face out over Captains Passage and Trincomalli Channel, the entrance crosses a pond, and an atrium is full of an enormous bouganvillia. The whole concrete house is enclosed in a mound of gravel. After life on the boat it seems cave-like but after caring for my mother in my childhood home for weeks it also feels like freedom! She now can manage on her own with visiting professional help.

Sea lions swim past in Captains Passage.

This continued pause in our sailing plans could have been difficult to accept but for some reason these winter months are some of the most productive times ever. Heather completes a children`s novel- The Patti stories. Life on the Farm, and I paint and draw every day and cover the long blank windowless side walls of our cave. We walk the windy headland trails and keep a close eye on Shiriri in the fifty knot winter gales that reach into her bay from the south- east.

Shiriri at her winter mooring.

It is here that I carve the figurehead for Shiriri and place Chickpea in the girls arms. What a lot of pleasure they will create in anchorages around the Pacific when canoes approach our anchored vessel and we hear excited voices in a variety of different languages saying, " Look! There is a girl on the front of that boat! ...... And,... and,... there`s a Chicken in her arms!!

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