…we received an unexpected call from the officer in charge, who invited Jamie to meet the skipper of the barge that rammed us. So he went back with Alica, leaving Liz and Millie-the-cat to guard Esper. After five cups of coffee Wat the translator arrived…
We started to look on the bright side. We were insured. We were floating. The Portabote–swinging from the new davits–had taken most of the impact, acting like a large fender. If we had been hit anywhere other than the stern, Esper could have just started her life as Phi Phi Don’s new wreck dive.
Once again Jamie gets confused as to what day it is in this podcast, but a sharp knock by a fishing boat against Esper’s hull soon brings him back to the real world.
It seems we are not the only boat to suffer damage, however, as other vessels on the rally have their own problems. Still, let’s not let this mar the celebration of a wonderful crossing of the Arabian Sea. Eight days and 960 miles later Mumbai’s hazy skyline makes herself known to a tired but elated Vasco Da Gama Rally.
Imagine our pride at having sailed over 4,000 miles, unassisted, without incident and without a scratch to Esper. I haven’t mentioned that our autopilot packed up early on in the Gulf of Aden, so many of the last 2,000 miles were hand-steered. That’s bloody hard work in case you didn’t know. Imagine, then, our horror when approaching the Indian coast, after our incident-free 4,000 miles, we were t-boned by the stupid dumb-ass Indian Navy!
Today goes down in history as my most embarrassing moment. It’s a moment all sailors dread. A moment that happens to most of us but one that shouldn’t happen in front of fellow sailors. It should only happen in private when no one is watching.
It’s only 1pm and already today has become the most eventful day thus far. At 10am this morning whilst holding the gib sheet Simon told Dobby to steer to starboard and then disappeared down below. With the rest of the crew running round on deck (and Tim reading a book in bed!) I went down below to find Simon lying on his back on the floor, with his hand in the air, looking white as a sheet.