Sunday, 13 May 2012

With A Serving Of Hot Custard

We’re here! We made it!

After 3 weeks and 1 day, we have arrived in Gosport, England. It’s a good thing. It’s a very good thing.  In fact, I’m so pleased that the trip is over, as is everybody else onboard, I am even finding Gosport a joyous place to temporarily reside in despite it being less then idyllic with its weird purple flats, its industry and kebab shops. Very young girls wander round in next to nothing with babies in pushchairs, cigarettes and foul mouths long overdue a bar of soap and I’m finding it all very quaint.

For now.

That was a long and uncomfortable trip and I’m not going to sugar coat it. It is easy to forget once you’ve landed how bad it was but maybe as I get older the rose coloured glasses are beginning to lose their tint a bit. I’m looking back on the delivery as I sit, nice and still in a quirky little bar on an old Light Ship called – ‘The Light Ship’ – with some lovely poached eggs and a cup of English Breakfast Tea and I am in no way looking back with fond memories to regale you with.

I lie. And how ungrateful of me. We did see a large pod (pod?) of whales very early one morning with one swimming very close to the boat.  One night we had around 15 dolphins laughing their heads off whilst playing in the slip- stream of our bow, an awesome sight.  Dolphins never fail to amuse.

And also on the plus side, I suppose, the Bay of Biscay was a doddle. However we didn’t catch one fish.
So it had its ups ‘n’ downs in all sorts of senses; as well as the kind that makes you want to dangle your head over the side of the boat and never eat again.

But now here we are in sunny Gosport and ‘pop’,  the crew are already up in numbers to twelve. The boat is being de-rigged of her delivery gear and is now looking rather more like the beautiful racing boat that she is. Her top mast went in today, always an exciting event involving a crane and my fiancé up the mast in a harness.

I’ve been buying and cooking all things English to show off to our Italians and Americans and the Australian. Cream teas with fresh strawberries, toasted crumpets and proper mature Cheddar cheese, roasted Gammon with parsley sauce and Jersey Royals, Bangers ‘N’ Mash with free range organic pork and apple.  Jammy dodgers and Elderflower cordial, curly kale and Brambly Apples!

I am really enjoying myself.

So I’m pretty convinced my next recipe to share will be heartily English followed swiftly by the odd Diamond Jubilee/my Birthday cake experiment. The crew have been very forthcoming with their suggestions for that one having had much time to ponder over happy cake memories whilst sitting in dripping wet weather gear and harnesses on cold, rough dark watches.

Ah, home and cake. It doesn’t get much better than that. Unless of course, it comes with a side serving of hot custard...

Thanks for reading.

The moon and the lighthouse

The beautiful Benodét - The home of sailing