Blog Post 10 by Jon Sanders: Back on the high seas
Hi all. I am back on the high seas. (Not all that high). Bit flat in fact. Unusual.
Not so flat the other side of Africa. Cyclone in the Mozambique Channel. (With all that current too).
Anyway, there was not much wind when I left the Royal Cape Yacht Club at 2-15pm last Wed. 15 Feb 17. Motor sailed all that afternoon and night.
Fog first part of night. Very foggy and cold. (The cold current was cold)…
Motor sailing at 1200RPM, low revs. Conserving fuel.
Pleasant ride, nice for a start.
It would be better still if there were less (no, none!) ships and fishing boats on the track.
I will set course more west and try to rid myself of them. (They show up via the AIS on the B&G screen).
I adjust the course now and again for the ships.
In this quiet sea, I am using the Simrad Tiller Pilot (it is quick to assemble). The Aires wind vane self-steerer, which connects to the steering wheel, is having a rest.
By the time you read this I should be in the good trade winds.
Behind me somewhere is a Swarbrick Space Sailor 27 named Liberdade. 27 ft single spreader masthead sloop.
It will become the second “SS27” to circumnavigate the world.
In the 1970s (at the age of only 18) Kim Swarbrick, part of the Western Australian boat building family ‘Swarbrick Bros’ designed the yacht.
There is a fleet of SS27s in WA, most at South of Perth Yacht Club.
The two lads on board Liberdade are Rhys Brindley age 23 and Trevor Youngberg 24. Rhys is an electrician and I think Trevor is too.
They do not have the luxury of the B&G Navigation. Theirs is two hand-held GPSs and photocopies of my 1970s charts of the Caribbean.
They are sailing on the ‘bones of their arses’.
If there are those in the Caribbean who need a yacht delivered or ferried (ex St. Martin, British Virgin Islands, etc, etc.) here are a couple of experienced young Aussies coming thru.
Here are their emails. Rhys.Brindley93@gmail.com
Rhys and Trevor have 100% Australian accents.
All sorts of people read this blog including the Flag Officers and General Manager of the Royal Cape Yacht Club. I would sincerely like to thank RCYC for their excellent hospitality (only the Tavern of the Seas has that). Also, the beautiful bar and restaurant staff, plus never ever to forget, the kindness of the blokes outside, the ones with their fluoresce vests.
My busted ribs are OK. I still take pain-killers, but much less – just in case. My next blog will be Wednesday and the following Wednesday.
Myself, the Liberdade guys Rhys and Trevor, and my usual driver Illunga (from the Congo) – we all dressed neatly went to clear-out for Saint Helena visiting the Port Authority, Customs and Immigration. As you do and as we did. And also to buy some Pounds Stirling because Saint Helena is British, isolated and banking limited.
Buying Pounds Stirling was a drama.
Off to the American Express we went at the V&A Waterfront.
“Do you have passports?” “We do”.
We asked, “Do you accept Visa Cards?” “We do”.
We pushed our Visa Cards across the counter and under the glass slit.
Look of horror. We get the cards shoved back.
“What’s wrong with our Visa Cards?”
The guy stabs his finger on the small print in the corner of the card. “Debit Card” (not a credit card). “Looks like a credit card”. ” It ain’t”.
“Debit Card” (not a credit card). “Looks like a credit card”. ” It ain’t”.
“Looks like a credit card”. ‘It ain’t’.
So we march off to the other end of the centre where FNB Bank have an ATM with a security guard. We all draw out 1000s of Rands. Nice new notes.
Back to American Express.
The young guys get the bloke, and I get the lady.
She sees me pull out a wad of notes.
“Where did you get the money from?”
“FNB. ATM Mam.”
“Where is the receipt?”
“Blimey, I don’t think the ATM was giving out receipts.”
But I dived into my pockets and sure enough found a FNB receipt. So like an idiot I give her the receipt.
It was a 90 Rand ($9) Royal Cape Yacht Club receipt.
That is when she must have decided I was ‘Ivan Milat’, the serial killer.
Our driver told us he knew a retailer Down Town who exchanged money. ‘Good rates’.
Off we went.
The retailer counted all the monies like one of Packers fastest ‘Croupiers’.
None of us knew if we got the right amount or not.
Kindest regards to all.