Spinnaker Delayed

We mentioned that we placed an order back in February for our new spinnaker from the company that made the original in South Africa. This was to make sure the sail would be ready for shipment when we got back north. About three weeks ago, while we were in Southport, I asked the sailmaker to send me a quote to have it shipped to either Bundaberg or Brisbane. The quote they got said it would cost about $280 to ship from South Africa to Brisbane, but the Australian delivery company wanted $1000 to ship it from Brisbane to Bundaberg! Needless to say, I told them right away “we’ll just pick it up in Brisbane, let’s ship it there.”

For now, I won’t go into the details of what happened after this, but despite my every effort the shipment was delayed multiple times until finally I was told it would arrive on Wednesday (a day later than our planned departure from Brisbane to Bundaberg). We were told the sail would be sent to for delivery last Friday. Well, today I get an E-mail that the flight they had scheduled our sail on was “full”. So, it’s been re-scheduled to arrive on Thursday! This is not good at all. Now we have to choose between taking a risk we can’t get the boat to Bundaberg on time for tasks we have scheduled there, or rent a car in Bundaberg and drive back to Brisbane to pick up the sail (an all day trip – and very expensive fuel). Let’s just say: I’m not happy (I don’t like to use other words in public).

Other cruisers can tell you that probably the most inconvenient hassle of our lives is the delivery of parts for our boats. It greatly effects what we do and where we have to be. It’s unfortunate that despite our greatest efforts to make sure these hassles are minimized (by ordering far in advance), that vendors and delivery companies will do things (or NOT do things) that mess up our lives in a big way by having our shipments arrive late, or go to the wrong place. And, after you finally get your package to arrive in a country, there’s always a chance that customs entry procedures will force an unknown amount of time (hours to days) of delay.

Anyway, wish us luck that we will survive this latest delivery disaster. I’m pretty upset about it at the moment.

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