Yesterday in St Johns I was woken at 6.15am by three girls on the pontoon. By the time I
put my head out they were wheeling their bicycles away. What is
this on a Sunday morning? Later a
larger group of cyclists turned up. I asked
why they brought their bikes down on the pontoon and they showed me. They
were dipping their wheels in the Atlantic. They had started their ride by
dipping them in the Pacific 3,000 miles away.
Later when I went ashore, some people were peering
in the water just behind the boat. There were four otters. I went
back on board to get my camera and one climbed on to the pontoon. As I
came back out of the cabin we were face to face (whisker to whisker?) about
5m apart. It was too much for him and they were off before the
Assaf, the current Israeli hitch hiker came
aboard. We went to get my washing, (so everything including sleeping bags
is clean) and then back to the internet cafe.
After that we set off out to sea. There
was little wind but a disturbed sea so we motored round the headland and got
into Petty Harbour a couple of hours later.
The St Johns seafront is not pretty, even if the
town is friendly and cheerful but Petty Harbour is a colourful little
place. We tied up behind a (smaller) yacht of a Scotsman, George, the
son of a Tony Blair adviser. With a boat called "Disowned" one gathered he
was a black sheep.
Again there were otters in the harbour but again
they were too quick. We must go and try to photograph the moose, they must
be easier. The otters caused sufficiently little stir to make us think
there will be other chances.
Newfndland (as I am learning to pronounce
it) was gerrymandered into Canada, according to one version, and have a
lukewarm attitude to central government. They do not want to join the
US, but regard themselves as Canadian to the same extent that the
Scots are British. Quebec has nicked their electricity and Ontario think
they are in charge, it all does sound familiar.
With very few yachts in this area, you get few
facilities. We could not find water in St Johns, but some fishermen's huts
at Petty Harbour had a hose, so we filled cans and topped up the
tanks. We have yet to sort out the cooking gas, a new tank and
regulator will be needed, but it was a holiday weekend in St Johns and a long
walk to someone who might not have the parts. We can go back to the
paraffin that we used in Greenland and clean the ceiling again
We are off again now, lolloping through a confused
sea with little wind. One forecast had shown a gale for today, so perhaps
this is better.
No photos yet, it was too misty this morning for
Petty Harbour to show up well and I am still waiting to get the iridium time