On Bank Holiday Monday we caught up with Dave
Sturdy (of welding on the pointy end fame), Elaine, Ruth and Rhiannon for a
Joe’s ice cream and a couple of bottles of wine. The jury is still out on
whether Joe’s or Llangrannog ice cream is the best in the world. Lawrence
reckons that Llangrannog ice cream beats Joe’s, but as the Smith’s haven’t tried
Llangrannog ice cream, we’ll just have to wait until we come back to reach a
verdict. Meanwhile, Beth and Bryn have offered to test the ice cream in every
place that we visit in case there are other contenders for the
Plan A was to leave Swansea for Padstow on
Tuesday to meet up with the rest of Sarah’s family. However, with memories of
the Aberystwyth to Neyland passage still fresh in everyone’s mind, we decided
not to do battle with the forecast gale 8. Instead, we went with Plan B and
hired a car for 3 days to head for Christow (where Sarah’s aunty & uncle
live) in Devon, followed by a day in Falmouth to pick up the rejuvenated Aries
wind vane (self-steering gear that keeps us on course when we are under sail).
Hats off to Helen and her husband (her father designed the Aries) for performing
miracles on the transmogrified Aries equipment. The instructions we had didn’t
make sense before the rebuild because the gear had been put together inside out
and back to front, then welded and painted to hide the modifications! We also
managed to find the time to visit the National Maritime Museum, where, by chance
they had an exhibition on survival at sea. Sobering to say the least when we saw
the Robertson’s 10 foot dingy in which 6 people survived on a diet of turtles
and fish for 37 days (The Last Voyage of the Lucette) before being rescued.
David and Lawrence had to have a lesson on how to drive an automatic when they
went to pick up the hire car, but both had a lovely time fiddling with the knobs
(e.g. cruise control and seat heaters) which helped to pass time on the
Dino-man turned up (at last) on Friday from
Neyland to finish off commissioning the SSB radio and do a com’s check. The
sponsons for the Walker Bay (new car) also turned up, just over a
On Saturday morning the ‘babes on the bow’ show
provided a welcome distraction from the weather and working out how to put the
sponsons on the ‘car’ (see ‘babes on the bow’ blog photos). Later we tried kite
flying in a force 6 with a beach state of moderate to rough – Sarah happened to
have 3 kites secreted about the boat for just this type of occasion. David
managed to lose the stunt kite (twice) when the string snapped (luckily Bryn
does a pretty good labrador retriever impression), whilst Lawrence somehow managed
to fly a kite-shaped kite successfully with 2 strings and managed to get it to
do some tricks! We’ve also done beach football in half a gale of wind, and beach
rugby in full wet weather gear (including wellies).
Spot the kite competition on Swansea
As we have worked out (at last) how to upload
photos, here are illustrations to accompany items in previous dispatches.
Lawrence taking the
new ‘car’ for a spin. When not in use, it has its own parking space on the Lego
Dinner with Ruby at the Pumphouse in Swansea.
Final score: Bryn 1, sticky BBQ ribs 0.
We are now stuck in soggy Swansea waiting for a 36-hour break in the weather to head
for Crosshaven (Ireland). So watch this