Another year older, another year wiser.

The super yachts entertain.

27th June 2021

Cala Es Trenc, Mallorca – Cala Es Trenc, Mallorca via El Arenal, Badia de Palma, Mallorca

Day after day the earth rotates around its axis (by definition!), month after month (ish) the moon rotates around the earth and year after year the earth rotates around the sun (again by definition!). The march of time is relentless, there is nothing we can do to stop it, and this march of time has given Iain another birthing forcing him to grow older (but it’s not making him grow up).

Iain was nearly another year older and therefore nearly another year wiser so using this new found wisdom we watched the weather, decided we needed to bail out of our sketchy anchorage and head for safety. Within minutes our decision was confirmed as a good one as the sky turned grey, the seas were whisked into a maelstrom and the clouds whisked into all sorts of unstable shapes. Making our way out to the safety of sea we felt for those who’d been caught unawares and were dangerously close to boat breaking rocks.

The sanctuary* we found was full of friends who’d heard of the impending birthday celebrations. While we sailed the smell, of a cooking bread maker had been torturing Andy all day long (as he was on a carb free binge) and filling Cushla with the amazing smells of baking birthday cake. As quickly as we anchored Andy was on board, he broke is carb free diet and the present of cake was gifted to Iain.

As a special birthday treat Iain had another one of his legendary walks organised. He’d heard about an abandoned unused railway bridge in the depths of a forest so we set out to discover it and with this destination it would turn into a classic Iain hike.

As the sun beat down on us, we walked on paths graced by dappled shade from the trees above. In amongst this beauty, we happened on a graffiti strewn underpass where heroin addicts would happily hang out and we really didn’t want to look too carefully what we were treading on. Pressing on further the scents of the pine forest were slowly overpowered by something menacing, and it was growing stronger with every step. Suddenly complete with tall fences, topped with razor wire, we’d found the source; we’d happened across the local sewage works (as a side note, we also walked through the local municipal dump!)

Our quarry was worth these pitfalls. Majestically, crossing a gorge was our bridge. It had never seen trains, never seen any use, and didn’t actually connect anything, but it did make for the most remarkable backdrop. The forest was slowly eating into its structure, taking back control of the environment and was making the efforts of man seem insignificant.

Majesty was also happening on the water as well as the land as we got back to Ruffian. The Palma Superyacht Cup was in full swing and the race committee had dropped the leeward mark in front of us. We watched as boats worth the GDP of small countries, hoisted their jibs, douse kites and harden up. We could feel the loads as sheets cracked and rigging strained as they headed off into the distance at breakneck speeds.

With all these superyachts in Palma there is a thriving second hand market in boat bits, and a second hand shop that deals in their scraps. The shop was a literal Aladdin’s cave, full of delights from sheaves the size of dinner plates to varnished blocks that could have been found in Napoleonic times. We however were looking for the scraps of the scraps and we found them on every shelf, if we needed a spare, we could find a spare. A really astonishing shop.

As the weather was finally settling, and more importantly, the swell created by far away storms was reducing, we could once again seek out blue water and blue water we found. The bay that we’d wisely left under heavy skies had been transformed into a world of blueness. The sky was blue, the water was blue, Ruffian’s shadow was blue, and even her blue antifoul was a deeper shade of blue.

After seeking sanctuary at the right time, taking the opportunity to use superyacht scraps when we could and returning to the blue when the weather allowed maybe shows that, as we have got a little older we have also got a little wiser.

*This sanctuary also enables Fiona to continue her yoyo trips to the hospital where they’re working on mobility, reducing swelling and maximising the benefits of cortisone.

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Author: Iain & Fiona Lewis

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