by Amory Ross
Volvo Ocean Race, Day 24 of Leg 1. Amory Ross, MCM onboard Puma Ocean Racing powered by Berg reports on the crew's progress:
PUMA Ocean Racing powered by BERG playing golf on the island of Tristan de Cunha after being dismasted in the South Atlantic Ocean during leg 1 of the Volvo Ocean Race 2011-12
Today’s sport outing was offensive. The Puma Ocean Racing powered by Berg team was invited to play at the Tristan Golf Course, a beautiful nine-hole establishment built into the side of a volcano. And while the scenery certainly lived up to it’s reputation, we were insulted by some of the on-site manners. Several club members kept eating grass and, among other things, the occasional golf ball. One bull of an occupant wouldn’t get out of my way; he just stood there staring! Another had the audacity to go to the bathroom, in public. For such a lovely island with such friendly people, they really must do something about their course residents. Holy cow were they rude!
Ken Read eyes Tristan de Cunha for the first time after PUMA Ocean Racing powered by BERG was dismasted in the South Atlantic Ocean during Leg 1 of the Volvo Ocean Race 2011-12, from Alicante, Spain to Cape Town, South Africa. (Credit: Amory Ross/PUMA Ocean Racing/Volvo Ocean Race)
Life away from the Tristan golf course continues for the 11 of us from Puma’s Mar Mostro. We had a heck of a first day here that involved little but rest, food, and drink. We are catered to by the locals, and one thing that was made immediately clear: food will never be in short supply. We have three home cooked meals a day – thank you Felicity and Joanna! Living arrangements include two adjacent houses located exactly between the dock and the pub. Perfect. Two of us stay out on the boat each night just to make sure the anchorage remains safe. There’s an internet café with three computers connecting us to the outside world. There’s a small store, a church, and a school. Outside of that there’s not much. Life here is very simple.
We all have work to do before the freighter gets here, but the Tristanians are eager to entertain when we have time to spare. They have been incredibly generous already and have also organized an excursion to nearby Nightingale Island to see the penguins and albatross, a tour of their fishery, and an all-day hike to the volcano summit some 2,700 meters above our heads. The local soccer ['football'] club wants to take a run at us, too. We’re banking on Marmo for the win…with eight legs he better be good!
Otherwise, spirits remain high. It was tough looking at the pictures of Telefónica arriving in Cape Town, but such is life and we have to accept it . Everyone’s doing a good job staying positive and focused despite the current predicament. Michi is on permanent 'Team Bremen' watch (our freighter), and he’s been providing us with its hourly whereabouts. It will be a few days before she’s here, but we’re counting down the minutes until we can resume our easterly progress towards Cape Town.
Gotta run! Team meeting in front of the TV for some Brazilian F1 racing.
All the best from Puma Ocean Racing, middle of the South Atlantic.
Puma Ocean Racing website
New Edinburgh, the only settlement on Tristan da Cunha, home to a population of 260