Yesterday morning when the mechanic came to work on Tanda Malaika with Danny, I gathered up the laundry and spent until noon chatting with other cruisers in the laundromat. It pains me to spend $6 a load to wash and dry clothes, but when I’ve tried washing them by hand they never dry in these wet climates.
I met Captain Dan, a gentleman in his mid 60’s who is a professor of criminal law for an online college. Teaching online provides him $1800 a month and the freedom to cruise. He is a happy chap and owns a power boat which him and his girlfriend motored from New York to here in, at that point he decided he wanted to sell it and purchase a sailboat. His girlfriend doesn’t want to sail, so he kissed her goodbye and is continuing on as a sailor. I also met a young couple with a beautiful 5 month old baby boy. They want to raise him on the ocean, visiting many lands and people to teach him about the world hands on. Every time I made eye contact with the little guy he grinned from ear to ear.
After returning to Tanda Malaika, it wasn’t long before the mechanic left – having decided that the computer to our starboard engine was fried. Danny lay down for a nap and I took most of the creatures in the dinghy so the boys could board at the skate park, and Mycah and I jumped on the bikes and peddled over to Publix grocery store.
We kept telling ourselves to keep the cart light, because we were going to have to haul all the groceries back on the bikes, and we did reasonably well. I had the extra heavy stuff in my backpack on my back, then a huge insulated bag resting on the bikes bar between my legs and another in the basket by the handle bars. Mycah had a load too, and peddling against the ever increasing wind with our hoards was quite comical…but we did it with style!
As we reached the dock we passed Captain Jack, the little old an I met the other day that paints shells. I introduced him to the creatures, and after chatting for a second he gave me a special gift: One of the shells he painted. I was deeply touched, and gave him a big hug, thanking him sincerely. This world is filled with beautiful Angels, and Captain Jack is one of them.
I decided to make Sadza for dinner. The family loves it when I do, and it had been a while since we’d had it. Sadza is a meal we ate in South Africa, which the black people cook on their fires. A thick mixture is cooked from cornmeal, which when I was little, we would roll into a ball, and with it we would scoop up train wreck gravy. I also served pork chops with it. The gravy is made with garlic, onions and tomatoes.
Saute it in a pan with salt and pepper, adding a little tomato sauce.
When it’s all done you spoon some gravy over the sadza and eat it together with the pork chops. It’s quite delicious. I remember my mom eating it with us the same way she did with the black people on her farm when she was a little girl. We sat on newspaper on the floor with the food in the middle and ate with our hands, scooping gravy up with the sadza. The real treat comes after dinner when sweetened condensed milk is poured over the remaining sadza and eaten as dessert.
This morning we caught a taxi to church, and enjoyed wonderful meetings there among the tiny handful of people. Everyone wanted to hear our story, which always surprises me, because it seems so normal to us. After church the members enjoyed a meal together, and we were invited to attend a get together with everyone on Wednesday night.
This afternoon I was up in the salon playing Quidler with the creatures, when a house with a hot tub went floating by.
They meandered through the anchored boats, right past Tanda Malaika and out into the open ocean. The really strange thing about it, was that to all of us cruisers, it really didn’t seem that strange. Does that mean WE are strange? Our house floats, and so does theirs!
There is a full moon tonight. I failed miserably at trying to capture it in a photo, but the beautiful bright moonlight spreads out across the water and rippled over to where my toes touched the waters surface.
If I were a manatee in these waters, I would float all night in the light of the moon.