Mina2 in the Caribbean - Where's The Ice Gone?
Tim Barker
Thu 10 Dec 2009 12:48

Date:  10 December 2009




As we crossed the Equator yesterday morning on the adventure of a lifetime, Neil picked up the satellite phone and called his girlfriend, Sarah Willan, in her office in Hartlepool. Expecting him to regale her with stories of King Neptune and bore her with details of advanced sail trimming techniques, we were electrified when we overheard Neil say “Will you marry me?” (there’s no room for privacy on a yacht). There was an awkward moment as the signal went weak and Neil was saying “Hello – hello – are you there? – can you hear me?” Then, as the signal came back, even without the sat phone we could have heard Sarah’s squeals of delight 3,700 miles away. A few minutes later an email came in from Sarah. I couldn’t speculate on the content, but the Subject line read “YES-YES-YES!!!” For the second time in less than half an hour, we all had tears in our eyes.


I have been gagging to tell the world this news via the blog, but for obvious reasons a “D” Notice was slapped on the story until midday today to allow an orderly dissemination of the news to those who matter. Can you imagine, for instance, Mr Willan, father of the bride-to-be, innocently tuning into the Mina2 blog and hearing for the first time that he was just about to acquire Neil as a son-in-law? The shock could kill a man.


Sarah, whom I have known since she was at school with Selina, is the most delightful woman and Neil is an extraordinary (and extraordinarily lucky) man. They were made for each other. Venetia, Peter and I are thrilled for both of them, and we are touched to have witnessed such a momentous occasion.


Mina2 will not have another day like this!!


+++BREAKING NEWS+++ It was announced early today that Neil Thackray will be the first ever, and probably only, recipient of The Mina2 Platinum Star, created especially for this extraordinary occasion. Golden Boy, eat your heart out.+++BREAKING NEWS