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January 21, 2018

As steady progress towards the Cape Verdes continued, furtive groups from each watch could be found in odd corners of the ship as watches prepared for the great egg drop. The challenge was to propel an egg from the main mast platform, towards the stern to land unbroken as far astern as possible. Marks would be given for ingenuity, presentation and distance with a bonus for puns. When the time came, the crew assembled at the mainmast, where the second mate appeared with a scoreboard around his neck. In a late manoeuvre Richard the captain changed the rules, having decided he had heard too many eggsaturating puns. Presentations followed, with much amusement and jollity. Attempts emerged with various shanties adapted to the cause.

Just as the presentations finished a late runner emerged as the BM’s entered a bag of old rope in which nested an egg or so they claimed. The throwers climbed to the platform and eggs in their various protective casings were propelled towards the stern. Surprisingly all managed to stay on board the ship. But when the contents were examined it appeared that only the Cape Verde Birdie team (aft port) and the BM’s team had kept their eggs intact. But attempts to discredit the B.M’s egg and say it was hard boiled, back fired when the accuser had a fresh egg smashed on their head. Due to points difference the Cape Verdi Birdie was declared the winner, though it still soars lonely in the sky looking for its prize. We continued our progress towards the Cape Verdes shortening sail so as to avoid arriving at Palmeira on the island of Sal in the early hours of the morning. With dawn on Sunday the low profile of the island enlivened by small cones, filled the horizon. In tricky wind conditions we reversed neatly onto our berth on the newly completed quay. Now we had to wait to see if immigration would clear us on a Sunday. After several hours we were allowed to go ashore. In the time honoured tradition of sailors, some of us filed ashore to the nearest bar.

Forward port watch

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