With our customs paperwork filed, we decided it was time to get on the move again. Over the past few months, we’ve learned it’s never good to stay too long in one place, especially when you’re paying for a marina slip. Since we still weren’t allowed to exit the Port of Bundaberg until the customs authorities cleared us, there wasn’t much choice on where to go except up the river. It was getting a little late by the time we got underway, and the tide was well on its way down for our slow motor up the river. The crawling pace was fine by me, as the river is quite shallow and if there was going to be any touching bottom, I’d rather do it at a snail’s pace! We watched the flat scenery unfurl with each meander of the river, studded with man-made landmarks: the sugar hangars and loading dock, with their adjoining molasses tanks, a little cable ferry, some boats anchored here and there in the reaches of the river. Some wildlife, too: ibis, pelicans, cranes, eagles, some sort of eel, or perhaps a lungfish, and many jellyfish the size of basketballs. Unfortunately, our timing was such that we reached the shallowest part of the river at the bottom of the tide, and sure enough Idefix slowly squeaked to a stop in the mud. I put the engine in reverse and she came back out easily, aided by the current; I tried a different approach, with the same results. Out of options, we drifted back downriver and anchored in a wide reach to have lunch and wait for the flood. Three hours later my leadline showed the water had risen two and a half feet and we weighed anchor, and made it all the way to town, arriving shortly before sunset. With the boat finally imported and two of our autopilot drives fixed, we are now ready to sail south towards the Great Sandy Strait

Unfortunately the cable I wired for the SSB modem seems to have given up the ghost, so we have to sail up to a cell tower to get email on the boat.