I was so tired…

… last night that I didn’t even go down to the taverna. I just stripped, showered, described my day out, as you see above, and slumped into bed.

The penalty of walking across a mountain in full sun, with a skinful of alcohol and pushing a bike was revealed this morning by a very thick head, aching calf muscles, burning shins and a sort of all-over dryness of the membranes so that your eyes try to stick shut, your tongue keeps sticking to the inside of your mouth, and all your joints feel lubricated with treacle. Once again I say “Never Again”, and I mean it this time. By lunchtime, I’d manage to drag myself down to the taverna for a very mild hair of the dog – a lager – and I felt slightly better.

Alexis has managed to get hold of a second-hand fibreglass deck house for the boat, and it almost fits. It’s yellowing a little, but all the windows, of which there are five, are intact and appear to be waterproof. We spent the afternoon trying it in various positions. It will allow me, as I had hoped, to put a bunk inside so that I can overnight in the boat if I make a trip to some other island, and it will keep my electronics dry when I get some. I left Alexis energetically fitting new cross-pieces to the boat, and sawing out slots in the deck house to make it fit. He reckons it’ll be bolted into place by tomorrow. He’s very keen to line it with wood panelling, but I reckon it’ll be a waste of time.

I suppose I’d better confess right here that nearly everything I know about sailing was picked up by reading about it, starting with Arthur Ransome’s Swallows and Amazons books, and culminating, more recently, with various yachting handbooks. I’ve also rented small boats on holiday – catamarans in Penang, dinghies in the Norfolk Broads and Finland, one of which I dismasted and capsized in a stiff breeze on a Finnish lake.

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