Location: Richards Bay, South Africa
Alas, someone has to ask the big questions. The day started with our first 950L bowser of diesel arriving before breakfast was even on deck, and soon enough, it became clear that today was going to be quite the operation for all involved in the process. We’re fortunate enough on Argo to be able to hold about 11,000L of fuel when fully pressed and for crossing somewhat large, open tracts of water on a time frame when the weather is under no obligation to play ball. This is fantastic. However, apparently, most of the cruisers that come through the area – often after following a similar course to our own – don’t have this luxury, and consequently, the area doesn’t often require the infrastructure that we so often take for granted to get this done in a timely fashion. As a result, upon dinners arrival on deck, we were finally into our tenth fill and just finishing off the process after a monumental effort from the local guys running to and from the fuel station all day. Making the most of our time on a relatively stable platform we also took the opportunity to do some work up the rig, Smash’s breathtaking aerial acrobatic prowess stunning onlookers as she worked on our navigation lights, before heading down into the engine room with Alex and `I to give our generators the love and care that they deserve.
Amidst all of this, the day was also packed full of academics. Both marine biology and oceanography were on the cards this morning, leadership after dinner, with room to spare for some free time ashore in the afternoon.
It’s really fantastic to be in South Africa finally. After all the build-up prior to leaving Indonesia, and then later Cocos and Mauritius, to have finally crossed the Aguhlas current and to have made landfall on a new continent feels like quite the achievement for all aboard. The fact that this means that we get to go on safari now is an added bonus. I think it’s rightfully pretty impossible to describe the power of shared experiences like this – I think that’s why the communities we form on here are quite so special – and though we are by no means at the end, yet, it is beginning to loom on the horizon. So I am grateful for days like today when we have the chance to step back and appreciate what we are doing here because this is a real privilege to be a part of.
Peace up. A-town