Latitude: 
33° 51' South
Longitude: 
151° 14' East
Conditions: 
Wind: East at 12 kts, Temp:23 c, 6/8 cloud
At anchor in Sydney HarbourToday has been a great day for all hands. At morning brief
Salty Sea-Dog Chooka answered the great conundrum-why two-six heave?
Well done Logan. After happy hour and morning tea, Captain John led
the Youth Crew through a series of tacks and explained the order that
the sails are handled and how the process of altering course under
sail takes place.

After lunch all hands closed up to their tacking stations and
the Ship sailed through Sydney Heads. As we sailed down the harbour
we were one of dozens of different types of vessels, sail and power,
large and small, that were going in every direction. We rounded
Bradley's Head and sailed to our anchorage East of Kirribilli Point.
The Youth Crew completed this complex manoeuvre with no difficulty,
which is quite amazing as they have only had four days experience.

After the sails and the upperdeck were properly secured, the
Youth Crew decorated the Cafe in preparation for Christmas dinner.
Before long, a strange looking craft was seen closing our position.
In it was an even stranger looking character dressed in a red suit
and sporting a huge white beard. YOUNG ENDEAVOUR was boarded by Santa
and his two helpers who came bearing gifts for each person onboard.
This was a great prelude to Chef Stony's magnificant Christmas
Dinner. This was a huge meal complete with Christmas crackers and
plum pudding. It will go down in my memory as the best Christmas
dinner at sea of all time. Dinner was followed by the Ship's concert.
It is amazing that so much talent can be found in such a randomly
chosen group. Each watch presented a skit and some individuals
provided additional entertainment. BZ (Well Done in Naval Speak) to
Stu and Yuri for the great songs. The anchor watch has been set and
the Ship is starting to quiet down. Santa has departed and the
serious business of keeping the Ship safe carries on.

Voyage 23/02 will end tomorrow afternoon. The Youth Crew have
been a terrific group of young Australians to sail with and they will
leave the Ship having made some firm friends who shared an amazing
adventure. This will be the last Captain's Log entry for 2002. Since
joining the Ship in June, I have been overwhelmed by two groups. The
first is the absolutely outstanding quality of young Australian's
that come onboard as Youth Crew. Young people from all walks of life
and all parts of the country, most with no experience of the sea at
all, quickly rise to the challenge of sailing a tallship. They are
able to overcome their fears and lack of experience and band together
as a group to take command of YOUNG ENDEAVOUR and sail her safely to
her destination. To do this they draw upon strengths they may not
know they have, overcoming sea-sickness, fatigue and in many cases a
fear of heights. The quality of young Australian that passes through
the Ship inspires confidence that the next generation of leaders will
rank amongst the best this country has ever produced. The other
amazing group I have come to appreciate is the Staff Crew. They are
posted to YOUNG ENDEAVOUR because they have volunteered and have been
assessed as having the ability to work well with and easily relate to
young people. Despite this, they are basically 'Garden Variety'
Sailors and Officers of the Royal Australian Navy whose backgrounds
and professional abilities are similiar to the majority of today's
service men and women. That they are able to adapt their skills to
the demands of sailing a tallship while conducting a world class
youth development program is testament not only to their
professionalism, but to the professionalism of the Navy they are part
of.

From all of us in YOUNG ENDEAVOUR to all of the Youth Crews
who have passed through the Ship this past year, we hope that you
have a very merry Christmas and a Happy New Year. May you have fair
winds and following seas throughout all of your future ENDEAVOURS.

Thought of the day: Courage is an inner resolution to go
forward in spite of obstacles and frightening situations. We must
constantly build dykes of courage to hold back the flood of fear.
Martin Luther King, Jr.


Yours, Aye

John Cowan
LCDR, RAN

Ahoy Nickels family, hello to the Mum the Dad Miss Kate Patsie and
rosie, Im having a great time, I've got a wicked big black eye, so
attractive , but no seasickness, thank god. Also you will all be
proud of my fearlessness because I climbed ALL the way to the top AND
out onto the yards, very scared but still managed. Love you all ,
miss you , wish you were here, love MissJane xx