Day 6 – Port Aft

The most competent ‘Shanghaied’ crew, spent a most memorable day on a lovely historical Isle off the Port of Opua within the NZ Bay of Islands. All safely ferried via rubber ducky, to the first NZ land site of one great mariner: One James Cook. The more adventurous tackled the climb to the Pa on the appropriately named Isle Motu Aroha, which means ‘welcoming Island, but was named later as Robertsons Island after an British Settler purchased this in the late 1800’s. The day caught many out ‘sunscreen-wise’ with burnt feet the main result through the removal of shoes to paddle. One Visitor (scribe) we believe created history but using a walker to navigate the sandy & volcanic shoreline. One of the Treasures found on the Island was an early century Naval Pen-knife, well rusted, but still displaying the Ivory handle. The second treasure was finding shelter under the Tui (bird) infested Phoutukawa (similar to Australian Waratah). On private land. The Caretakers, had a history related to the Lord Nelson, Jim being Skipper of the predecessor of our ship ‘Soren Larsen’ and his wife was Bosun on ours, both enjoying their twilight years on this idyllic piece of paradise.

Having accounted for all on safe return. (surprise there, who would have thought that even on a 5 acre Island someone would get lost).

The evening then was a BBQ duly Hosted by our excellent Engineering Crew. (They can scrub up well).A special punch replaced the traditional ‘Tot of rum’ but enabled tongues to ‘loosen’, eyes ‘glisten’ and speech ‘slur’ but one crew-member had a head-start. The punch’s final kick enabled ‘line dancing’ and even a ‘hula’ to the Beach Boys Good ‘Vibrations’ ……no mean feat

What a contrast of the day that followed. Heavy swell, the sun on holiday was replaced by an Icy breeze. Crew members succumbed to sea-sickness and one member had his wedding ring of 41 years ‘removed’,(Don’t ask). At the time of this Blog, all ‘affected parties’ of the sickness are rosy cheeked, looking forward to the Bar and Quiz night. A ‘hardy bunch’ our lot.

Team members being: (in no order of rank, intelligence or value of Bar-tab)

Ruth, Vince, Lachlan, Sue, Caroline, Bruce, Gus, Lawry. Aka Capt Pugwash.