So, we started our South Africa sojourn in Cape Town.
And, no, we Galactics are not city people.
I will say that sitting on a bench in the chi-chi Waterfront Mall in Cape Town, watching a swath of the world walk past me, just 36 hours after we completed the passage from South Georgia - that was pretty good as a life-as-hallucigen experience.
But once we'd done that, and taken in the view from Table Mountain, there wasn't too much to keep us.
Luckily, Giselle on Pelagic had told us, way back in Stanley, about Simon's Town. (And no, not this Pelagic. This one.)
Simon's Town, she said to us. That's where you want to be.
After a few days of watching the turds float by on the tide at the Cape Town marina, and not having any place for the boys to run, we were ready. The trip from Cape Town to Simon's Town is a totally routine day hop of about 60 miles. Get up at 0400, be more or less awake and away from the dock at 0430, and you're finished well before dinner.
But the trip from Cape Town to Simon's town has an added bonus above most coastal hops. The route (below) just happens to take you around the Cape of Good Hope. (What a name!)
Now the Cape of Good Hope isn't the southernmost point in Africa. That title goes to Cape Agulhas, just a short way down the coast.
But if you compare the two names, you'll quickly see why one gets all the press.
We were on something of a roll. Only a few months before, Galactic had, improbably enough, been off Cape Horn.
Cape Horn had been a total lark - we weren't going anywhere else but there. It was just a side trip to see that most famous of all landmarks, and nothing like the traditional experience of rounding the Horn at sea. But even though it was a lark, we also got a bit of a floggin'. Three reefs, a staysail, and parted aft lower shrouds. Lord have mercy.
For this Cape, we were actually going somewhere. It was legitimately on our way from point A to point B. But although we had a more businesslike purpose in hand than we had for the Horn, the actual day trip involved was much more tranquilo.
|Eric, incapacitated at the Horn ("Grab a bucket!") got his chance to shine this time.|
|The beast itself|
|Elias. He always shines at sea.|
(And, if you're wondering, I reckon there are five of them: the Horn, Good Hope, and Leeuwin, plus the southernmost points of Tassie and En Zed, whatever they might be called.)