13th July 2008 - Alicante (a day of rest)

Bali Hai
Neal Stow
Sun 13 Jul 2008 23:24
After cleaning the boat last evening we had a quick couple of beers with Mike before he headed off to the airport to catch his plane and then the rest of us went into town for something to eat.  We were doing it the Spanish way, looking for a restaurant at 10 o'clock at night.  The Lonely Planet says that Alicante is famous for its Spanish nightlife and it is right.  The place was crammed full of restaurants, cafes and bars - tables and chairs filled the maze of small streets just up from the harbour and they were all full.  We had difficulty finding a table anywhere but eventually got one outside a cafe that focused on grilled meat platters and paella - we had both and they were very good.  After the meal we went to a couple of bars and people watched, finally making it back to the boat about three in the morning.
I struggled out of bed at 7:30 feeling somewhat the worse for wear but knowing that I had to make sure the boat was ready for the next crew and also do my laundry.  The others were up around 9ish with Big Pete and Tracy leaving at 10:30 and Thin Pete at one in the afternoon.   In the event, leaping out of bed at such an early hour turned out to be unnecessary as when I eventually heard from the new crew it turned out that they had decided to keep away from the boat until later in the day in order to give me a break!  However, I did manage to get things done and then had a sleep in the afternoon.
My new crew are my cousins Jane and Yvonne and their partners Steve and Andy.  They have only had one weekend on Bali Hai in the past and in Yvonne and Andy's case that was their first time sailing.  But Steve is a Coastal Skipper and Jane is Competent Crew so we should be okay.  Andy is the latest in a long line of "fishermen" on the boat, so I am hoping he is considerably more successful than the rest - he only has to beat one small mackerel so it is not much of a challenge.
Everyone arrive at about six o'clock and when I ask them whether they would like a drink, I am amazed when they ask for a cup of tea.  Apparently they have vowed not to have a drink before seven.  This is a great relief, although I am not sure how long it is going to last - particularly as Yvonne managed to polish off a bottle of Rioja practically single handedly at dinner.