Currently at anchor in Athol Bay and experiencing light SE winds with nil swell. current temperature is 14 degrees.
Welcome to day 10 of our voyage. Following an early morning wake up call, breakfast and an early morning brief the anchor was weighed at 0815 this morning. Once clear of the anchorage we proceeded under motor to Fleet Base East berthing port side to Berth No5A at 0900 where we off loaded 10 days of garbage and embarked some fresh provisions.
At 0950 we welcomed onboard forty Half Day Sail guests, including 15 members of the Bondi Centre. This centre operates an early intervention program for young people that experience psychotic symptom, and aims to improve treatment outcomes for people with illnesses like schizophrenia and bi-polar disorder. Also joining us were six members of the Defence Material Organisation MSD Graduate Program, five staff members of the MCD SPO ( these Naval personnel look after the maintenance of Young Endeavour) and a number of the Staff Crews family and friends.
At 1005 the lines were cast off and we proceeded out of Fleet Base East where engines were shut down and the ship brought under sail. During the three hours that followed the Youth Crew did a great job of keeping our guests entertained and everyone enjoyed a fantastic day sailing around the spectacular Sydney Harbour.
By 1300 we were again back alongside our berth at Fleet Base East and once we had farewelled our guests the Youth Crew went ashore with their Watch Leaders for end of voyage talks. On their return they participated in their final set of ‘rope races’ then proceeded aloft (climbed the foremast) and completed at good set of harbour furls (very neat furls of the square sails).
At 1600 we again departed the berth and proceeded out to anchor in Athol Bay. This evening we enjoyed a pizza dinner then held a slide show on deck (complete with our very own lightning and thunder show) which gave everyone the opportunity to reflect on the past 10 days of the voyage. The rest of this evening was spent with the Youth Crew completing end of voyage questionnaires and ‘letters to themselves’, which are returned to each Youth Crew member six months after voyage completion. Whilst the Youth Crew were completing these final administration tasks the Staff Crew took the opportunity to conduct our own ‘end of voyage’ debriefs.
Tomorrow morning the Youth Crew will again be woken early, but this time for their final early morning activity. Following breakfast and morning brief the Youth Crews personal effects will be stowed on deck, and a final ‘happy hour’ conducted. At 0845 the anchor will be weighed and once underway the Youth Crew will man the yards.
So that the Youth Crew can experience sailing under the Harbour Bridge whilst aloft our plan is to head down the harbour and under the bridge so they can enjoy this unique experience. Once complete we will head back to Fleet Base East were we will berth for the final time for this voyage at Berth 5A at 1000.
Once alongside we will invite family and friends onboard for a tour of the ship and to witness my final address and the presentation of Certificates of Achievements to all of the Youth Crew. Once complete we will say our emotional farewells to the Youth Crew of Voyage 17/12.
At the completion of this voyage I hand the ship back to the full time Captain LCDR Mike Gough. It has been a pleasure being back to Captain Young Endeavour for this voyage and to sail with a wonderful Youth Crew and to work with such a professional and dedicated Staff Crew.
Following this voyage Young Endeavour will go into an eight week maintenance period and the Staff Crew will enjoy a well deserved break.
Until next voyage, take care.