April 26th

Woke up on my first full day on the boat. Comfortable fore cabin that i share with Brian the other crew member. Poric put me to work stripping down an outboard engine as it had started to corode and paint was coming away, spent a couple of pleasurable hours on the quayside with a wire brush out in the sunshine. Funny how some of the simple things in life become enjoyable. An alarm sounded on the boat and Poric said it must be beer o’clock. A tin of brown ale was presented to me. This is the life. The cost of being on board is 12 pounds per day, this covers my accomodation, breakfast, lunch, dinner, two tins of beer and a glass of wine with dinner, not forgetting travelling on a blue water 53ft cruiser to some of the more exotic places in ths world !! A pretty fair deal i think. It works both ways of course, the boat owners get a helping hand with crew on board which makes tasks especially night watches easier, and crew have an affordable way of sailing without having to buy their own boat or worry about maintenance. Afternoon consisted of a long hike up to Pakarui, a high up look out point high up over Whangarei. A long walk down the other side to the other end of town, Some of Porics old friends joined us for dinner on board, Dave and Annie, Dave was an original kiwi who spoke highly and in great detail about New Zealand. Sadly Annie was suffering from the early stages of dimentia so had trouble remembering somethings, she did tell me how she came from Gretna Green and described her local village accurately. I told her how i had only been up there the previous year on my way through Scotland which she thought was great. A couple of glasses of wine and a couple of beers were had before bedtime.

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