Sunday, July 5, 2009

Check up in Cape Town

We sailed Catlyn back to Cape Town for a check up. Anxiously we set her free from Langebaan on our way to Dassen Island. All the "hotnotsvlooie" were cleaning her hull to look her best for her first return to her birth place.

The swells were beautiful and the wind was generous and with the main out we had a lovely sail to Dassen Island. And then luck struck Johan who trawled his lines.

A beautiful snoek landed on the deck. It's gills a deep ruby red, it's scales a shiny silvery blue. But the beastly men were hunting this awesome animal down and it's head was bashed on the deck. It was cleaned and washed in sea water and filleted and frozen in an instant, and then three more followed to fill the freezer.

Snoek for dinner!! Fresh!! For a girl always 'sniffing' fish out in the supermarket, it was a thrill to enjoy the meat of this blessing.

All went to their cradles except me, who had to stand guard for the first shift according to Janlie's list. When the deep breathing and heavy bodies filled Catlyn, I sneaked out and felt the darkness. The whole sky was lit up by stars almost touching the horizon. I didn't want to wake Jaco for his shift, almost too jealous to stop this.

Our Skipper started the engines at six o'clock the next morning. It was still pitch dark. How do you see? You can only hear the sound of the waves rolling somewhere. We lifted the anchor, watching it in the flash light coming closer...and then Catlyn was free to start her trip to Cape Town. The radar was on and we safely sailed out of the house bay of Dassen Island.

The fog was hiding Table Mountain from us all the way. We sailed into Elliot Basin the afternoon, after realising how fast those big ships really are. Size does count!

Elliot Basin was as disgusting as always. We tried to secure Catlyn as good as possible, but the jetties didn't look very stable. Just a week or two before a friend of ours launched their new Maverick, Be-Jo, and poor Bert jumped off his boat right through the jetty! A storm was brewing and we were really worried.

The next morning in the howling wind an waves, the stepladder slipped of it's rails and luckily fell into the sea on the other side of Catlyn. But we were still worried, because the storm wasn't subsiding and we strapped the jetty and ladders with extra ropes and we bought six big fenders to cushion us against the delapidated jetties. But it wasn't enough and the derailed ladder banged against Catlyn chaving her side.
We couldn't wait to get out into the open seas again!

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