Sailing around the World, ( presently in Cape Town. )

A Lady
Stephen Hyde
Sun 9 Jan 2011 00:52
FRIDAY   7th  JANUARY   2011
07.30hrs  Skipper hopped out of the scratcher and wandered up to the shower rooms to have a shower and shave. it was a beautifull
morning and Herman from " Destiny " was also there getting in a good start to the day.
Talking about good starts, We had a great start to our christmas holiday in Ireland when we flew into Dublin on Thursday the 9th of December
and our daughter " Leah" collected us and drove us back to her house in Sandymount around 5pm, There skipper met his new
grandson " Jamie " for the first time, ( Aileen having already met him last year )  ahhhh, what can you say !  adorable, thats what.....
Later , while the dinner was cooking, Leah, her husband Johnny, our other son Stefan, Caroline and skipper walked the 200 meters to " Slattery's"
pub and had a few pints of Guinness before returning to the house for dinner, It was 18 months since skipper had a pint and these few pints
tasted like nector.  We had a wonderfull evening and stayed the night in their house.
On Friday the 10th of Dec. we drove down to Cork and skipper attended an I.C.C. dinner held in the Royal Cork Yacht Club.
this club was founded in 1720 and is the oldest Yacht club in the world.  Kevin Dwyer presented a slide show at that dinner of his 2 months
on board " A Lady " last year,  It turned out to be a very entertaining evening, and thanks to Eleanor Cudmore ( commodore of the Southern region
of the I.C.C,) who arranged the dinner and got so many people to attend in freezing conditions.
On that subject, freezing, we returned from a lovely 32 degrees , to be met with this Ice age stuff.  Not only that, the economy was also freezing,
Ohhhh, our poor little country, what has happened since we left,  oh so depressing, none the less , the Irish were often down on their luck before
and managed to dig themselves out of trouble.  Skippers thinking here is simple, If Berty the Bo**X did not fire Charlie as minister for finance
and replace him with Biffo, then we would never have seen this mess. right !
On Saturday 11th , we went to our friends house in Coachford, Margaret and Bob How had their annual bash and as usual it was a great day out,
The house is a large old Georgian house set nicely on a south facing hill overlooking the valley and streams below. not to mention the
trees and old castles, normally skipper would spend a few hours shooting with Bob, but the weather was too flippen cold so we dropped that
idea for this year.    
Going and comming to the house was slow due to all the snow and ice everywhere. Having survived a trip around the world, it would be
a travisty if anything happened to us while at home on holiday.  But , you know murphys law.
Enough of Christmas for now, Back on the boat,we stored the provisions purchased yesterday and skipper was happy that the computer
was working well again,
around midday, we set off for Immigration and Customs , we had to get our clearances for the departure tomorrow. All this took a couple
of hours and and when we were finished , we traveled off to the chandlery to get a new fly screen for the forward cabin, which we ordered
before we went home , This we fitted on our return to the boat and were really happy with the thing when we were finished.
we completed the provisions and stocking up ther boat for the next 3 weeks as provisions are not great in St Helina. and are very expensive
in any case.
Sham & Emily took their car over to the Royal Cape Y.C. where they could leave it untill they return early next month.
The Royal Cape has reciprocal rights with the Royal Cork and the Royal St. George.and is a lovely friendly club.
Later, we walked the few hundred yards to the Cape grace Hotel for dinner, we sat outside on the terrace overlooking the marina.
the weather was warm and the food was good value,
We had lots of laughs and swapped stories about all the people we know at home and some of the funny things that happened.
and the not so funny things like " Charlie Andrews "  Life can be a bitch sometimes,  But But, we have to keep going.
We met  Casey, Hidie and Steaurt from " Wild Tigres " and exchanged lots of hugs and kisses, It was great to see them all again.
we said good bye to Anna & Udo from " Destiny", our German friends, they were leaving the boat and returning home in a few days time ,
having spent a year on the boat. It was sad to see them go .. almost like part of the family........  but, but , thats life again..
Later , it was great to sit in the cockpit and have a night cap and look out past the well lit up " Cape Grace " hotel, through all the mast's
and dock cranes at the hugh shimmering " Ferris Wheel " with all its bright lights against a dark blue night sky behind.
It was enough to send a shimmer down the spine,
Can you recall a few months ago, a young English Bride was murdered here in S.A. while on their honeymoon, well they were staying here
in the " Cape Grace " hotel.  
Ohhhh, that " Ferris wheel " reminds Skipper of the Mill Wheel in Midleton distelleries, where he and his sister " Deirdre "often spent holidays with his uncle and aunt and cousins,
Uncle Dennis worked in the distelleries and their house was part of a large single story Georgian House , The Croketts lived in the other half
and Barry Crockett is now the head distiller there. The house was slap bang in the middle of the distelleries and right next to the "Mill Wheel"
so all night we listened to the slow rumbling of the wheel rotating , which provided all the power for the plant. Just so simple..........
and Uncle Dennis used to take skipper fishing in the Mill Race with plastic bags,  the mill race was a bye product of the mill stream which fed the mill wheel and all we did was shut off the water in the mill race, climb down into it and pick up the stranded " Trout " and put them into
the plastic bags,  It was certainly a alternative style of fishing, and lots of fresh trout for the tea........
When skipper got older, he would still visit Dennis in the distelleries, but no more fishing, well not in the mill race, but fishing drops of whiskey
into our thirsty trottles.  Ohhhh some fond memories. 
Thats all for now.
Signed :-   Stephen Hyde   ( Skipper )