Fresh back from a summer cruise aboard a Bertram 31, as soon as I had time to regroup, I went to look at the ship’s log, where I had jotted down some tips, tricks, and behaviors dictated by the experience I had just had. And that in my opinion help you enjoy your boating vacation to the fullest.
FIVE TIPS FOR NOT GETTING BORED (AND NOT “FROTHING”) ON A CRUISE
1. MUSIC ON BOARD.
A small ukulele (commercially available for as little as 19 euros, great for starters) will be your ideal companion in the roadstead. You put it wherever you want on board, it is very easy to learn the major chords, and its Hawaiian “sound” goes perfectly with boat life.
2. ADIEU CRESCENT & CUTTING BOARD
An indispensable accessory, in the galley kitchen, is the manual vegetable slicer. A grinder that works by pulling a cord and will save you from wasting energy, cutting boards, half-moons, and the risk of puddles! The price? No more than ten euros!
3. EASY COCKTAILS
A bottle of Aperol (or similar products), because of its versatility, will ensure excellent cockpit aperitifs. Aside from the “usual” spritz, try it together with white wine, a dash of grapefruit juice and two ice cubes-a thirst-quenching goodness after a day of sailing in the sun.
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4. WATCH OUT FOR EYEBALLS
You will see that in the roadstead, schools of wrasse will often concentrate around your boat. They are fun fish to catch (even for children) and great cooked in a pan, with a drizzle of oil and some coarse salt. Catching them is super easy: equip yourself with a spool of fishing line (best thin, 0.20) on which you will mount a 10- or 12-gauge hook.
Chop up some stale bread, throw some into the water, and watch the fish go into a “feeding frenzy.” It is time to cast your hook, on which you will have primed a piece of bread. Catches are assured: you will catch a couple of specimens. Then the fish will no longer eat. You will have to wait a few tens of minutes before releasing the bread pieces and creating the frenzy again.
5. EVERYTHING IN ITS PLACE
When using tools, accessories, and board items, always remember to put them back in the position you found them or panic will set in. “Where did the pilot book go?”, “Where the heck did you put the gas lighter?”, “Who has seen my cell phone charger?” Raise your hand if you have not encountered these situations on a cruise. It may seem trivial, but order is crucial. And before you put something back that is not yours, always ask the owner, “Is it okay if I put it there?”
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