Atlantic ocean

18 January 2019

After a tiring two days, including a twelve-hour chicken bus ride trip from Kaapschehoop to Richards Bay Jacques welcomed me with dinner, together with an introduction to the French radio playing in the background.

Which, I learned soon enough, would be ever playing. In soft tones and melodies that transcript the ages’ harmonies. With very limited understanding of french, I would soon practise mocking the words of the hosts.

Soon two couples from neighbouring boats joined us onboard for a night. I had the pleasure of meeting Jana and Martin who lived on Per Linde as well as Damien and Delfina from NEANT. They shared their stories of sailing and discovery and with Beethoven’s Juilliard String Quartet we started exploring the music of the ages; from classical harmonies, rock and roll and even some French rap songs.

It goes without saying, “Qui n’avance pas, recule.” certainly does not apply to these beautiful people. No, they leap into adventure with heart and soul! To be able to share a fraction of our journeys with one another is a gift I will cherish evermore. They taught me, once more, to see with new eyes and listen with childlike curiosity.

St. Lucia Day-tripping

20 January 2019

Rio dos Médãos do Ouro — River of the Gold Dunes is what captain Fernão de Álvares Cabra men christened St. Lucia soon after their ship wrecked on the Transkei coast. On 13 December 1575, the day of the feast of Saint Lucy, Manuel Peresterello renamed the mouth area to Santa Lucia. In the mouth of the Tugela tourists gather to witness the hippos that roam the waters of the Tugela mouth.

We followed the KwaZulu-Natal’s forestry crossroads, with craters that threw the car from one side to the other. After two hours of holding fast to our seats and a disappointing halt at a so-called cheese farm, we search for some place to quench our thirst and silence our rumbling stomachs.

With ancient astoundment I stare at the dunes that stretch as far right and as far left as the naked eye allows one to see. It is by no chance that this coastline is often referred to as the Wild Coast!

Tell tales

21 – 25 January 2019

The day’s fieriness had us glowing, threatening to slow the motion of the day. Albeit! A braai had been hosted by Zululand yacht club, where one meets with the subtle idiosyncrasies of culture, language and tell tales of the seas.

Will we ever exhaust our need for exploring the dimensions of our understanding? For the ocean promises neither to return one safely to shore, nor not to swallow one to the very depths of this earth.

While the fires grew dim, voices arose and stories unfolded. Stories of wonder, of discovery that in its own turn had sparked – in each – a yearning desire to follow the winds and the tides to shores unknown. Sommige laat klink selfs, verlangende verhalle van voëlvrye vaart en gee erkenning aan hul verslawing aan daardie diep donker blou.

With everything prepared for the journey to Cape Town, we ready the last few things before departure. Die heersende atmosfeer vertolk spanende opwinding. For some, these docks had been home for over a month. Five boats had sailed from Richards Bay that late morning, heading to Cape Town.

Port Elizabeth to Cape Town

28 – 31 January 2019

In the mid hours of the morning we arrive in Port Elizabeth. Algoa Bay, meaning “to Goa” in Portuguese has a longstanding history, tracing back to 1488 when Bartolomeu Dias erected a cross on Kwaaihoek, followed by Vasco de Gama and later the British settlers in 1820.

The port is powdered in manganese dust and home to many fishing boats. In the early hours of the morning the fishermen would depart with swaying bright lights and chattering murmur growing more distant as their lights fade from sight. At a family owned restaurant, This Is Eat, we delight in curry fish and refresh with a cool ice cream.

We depart from Port Elizabeth towards Cape Town. With little wind we had to travel under motor from Cape of good hope and arrive in Hout Bay harbour. A pod of dolphins lead us into the channel, with gently swift movements they dance in the wake and in the streamline of the bow as they so often do. We have the pleasure of meeting some South African folk living on various vessels. They welcome us for drinks aboard and the stories and tell tales continue.

Many more words can be written about the sail I’ve had on Enjoy. With Jacques you are sure to ENJOY an interesting sail and stories of wild blue yonder.

Rikarda Elsa