Sarah Grace goes to sea
Chris Yerbury and Sophy White
Sun 25 Dec 2005 03:09
December 24th................Christmas Eve
Well: we arrived yesterday afternoon, and it already seems like a week ago.  Leon came speeding out in his outboard, covered with spray, to welcome us into the harbour, and we dropped anchor whilst gulping down some Bollinger curtesy of Mike and Ros!  It has sailed with us all the way from Bristol! I think Chris felt a huge relief at being able to have a break from the non-stop skippering he has been doing over the last month.
It is really extraordinay being by land again, as well as actually being in this amazing place.   It is nice to see green trees waving in the wind.  All the islands we have seen in the last few months have been arid rock and dust.   We are anchored in a large semi enclosed bay, with a beach all around the edge.  It is dotted with around 100 yachts, including all the good friends that we have made along the way.  Water taxis beetle around, as well as a laundry boat (called Daffodil), a bread boat (I bought some banana bread and a brown loaf  this morning), a water and diesel boat, and, I kid you not, Santa in a dinghy, being towed by four reindeers in another dinghy in front of him.   They puttered around the anchorage this afternoon, a bunch of fabulously loopy Americans, throwing sweety balls at all the yachts.   Lots of yachts have Christmas lights on them, so as you can see, things are not so different from home.
I feel rather dazed by the change in pace, from the repetitive grind of watch keeping and ocean, to this social whirlwind by this beautiful green island.   While the water boat was filling the tanks this afternoon, a turtle swam by.   It was an amazing greeny yellow colour.
The laundry has been picked up and returned, as if by magic, really clean and dry and half the price of the laundry robbers in the Cape Verdes.  
We met a crowd of friends for  a meal last night, and after two rum punches I was flat out on the grass (none of us have drunk any grog for three weeks now, and you lose your resistance).  It's also what I normally do, as my friends well know.
The girls are exhausted.  Mimi ran around so much when she got to shore yesterday evening, that her leg muscles are now really stiff and she can barely walk.  Otti is tired too:  it's pretty hectic all this land stuff.  They have also been swimming off the boat every hour, in the very warm turquoise sea.   They are entranced by this place, because you can order pizzas on the VHF radio.  I asked Otti how she knew this, and she said, 'Mum, I heard them ordering on the radio!'
So the presents are wrapped, the boat is vaguely clean, we have water and fresh fruit, loads of decorations and a three foot Christmas tree:  we are ready for Christmas!!