While the postwatch gentle bar party was in full swing Aft Starboard Watch took thehelm. This 8 – 12 watch was in sharp contrast to last time we tookthe wheel and George enjoyed every last minute of it – particularly taking solecharge of the bridge at one point. Last time was sailing in theForce 9 gale with rain lashing down. By comparison last night themoon reflecting on the water with the gentle sway of the mast created a magicalatmosphere – even handing all seven sails towards the end of our watch couldn’tbreak the spell. There may even have been a sighting of a mermaidwith glittering sparkles in her hair, a sea monster in the distance breathingfire and rainbow coloured flying fish which glowed every time they flew into theair – or was that just the same magic taking hold of Tasha’s (over)activeimagination? Passing the helm to Forward Port was, as always, apleasure. In part due to the banter and fun we have as we saygoodbye to the Bridge, but the call of our bunks by then is always verycompelling!
Edward wassure that something very special happened for him in the last 24 hours, butevery memory is so wonderful he’s found it hard to capture one inparticular.
Paddy’shighlight has got to be his first successful evacuation since setting sail –thanks to the marvels of a friendly South African chemist.
John climbedto the top of the foremast yesterday, ably accompanied by Mike – they waved andcalled but as Tasha was on Mess Duty she missed the spectacle – she isn’t sureit really happened – where are the photos to prove it…
Marcin’smother’s cheesecake recipe, beautifully prepared by Cookie and Mandy deserves asecond mention – another highlight for Mike and the recipe will be repeated manymore times in Hebden Bridge. Every bite will bring back happymemories of the fun the crew were all having the night we first ateit.
Sunday weawoke to the Mess Duty Crew still in their nightwear adding to the hilarity ofbreakfast served at very high decibel and banter levels ('A Little Bit OfMonica’ an ever present accompaniment drifting down from the kitchen), fabuloussunshine, a slight breeze, blue sky, and a vastly different landscape.Gone were the sand dunes, replaced by huge rolling hills of the Transkei,with trees and little sandy beaches. We have steered a course incredibly closeto the shore in order to see the detail of the shoreline including magnificentwaterfalls, thanks to Marcin navigational skills. IncidentallyMarcin’s highlight of the past 24 hours is a miraculous cure of the trappednerve that has been troubling him for days, full working order has been resumedto his left hand and a smile is back on his lovely face. All due,he says, to Mandy!!
Morning Smokoincluded Sam’s favourite (!?) – a beautifully light and flavoursome chocolatecake with a mystery filling. We think we’ve identified it ascrab-apple and mint jelly – possibly meant for tonight’s Sunday Dinner roast,but somehow it added yet another random bit of magic to the day – did Cookie dothis a purpose?...
As we gentlymotor our way towards Durban the sun continues to shine, the dolphins keepcoming to say hello (Tony was even more excited than the rest of us to see the50+ Bottle Nose Dolphins – we’re sure the rest of us heard him call out 'look atall those Flippers, I always thought there was only one!’) and the sky is stillblue.
Life at sea is good for Aft Starboard!! Mike, Paddy,John, Sam, Tony, Monica, Edward, George and Tasha