An apparition at Nelson


Below is another story from the early 1970s from Paul Hastings. One has to wonder what went into those sandwiches…

Some years ago, Very early one morning, the Kidnapper, under command of Brian (“Cardie”) Cardiff, assisted by his eternally-respectful crew, finished the attack on Cook Strait, and arrived at Nelson sufficiently far back in the fleet as to have not won.

Accordingly, there was nowhere for us to moor up close to the Nelson Yacht Club, and we went around to the Port, where we found a line-up of participating yachts moored outboard of the 17 metre Sailing vessel Friis – which at that time was crewed by a “Greenpeace-type” crew, and sailing around NZ. Mixed in among the six or seven yachts were a couple of fishing launches, getting ready to go fishing, until we all arrived.

Among the yachts inboard of us was the co-competing yacht owned by Cardie’s business partner (and later, our Commodore) Del Hogg.

That morning, a fellow walked out along the yachts moored inboard of us, and climbed aboard one of the the fishing boats. He called to us “Can you let me out to go fishing? “ We all yelled “No.” So, he sat down, and pulled out his lunch. We asked what he had, and he said “sandwiches”. A deal was negotiated: beer for a sandwich, and we got on with it, sitting on the bulwarks of “Friis”.

After about 10 minutes, Hoggie called out to the world “did you see the fisherman come down, wanting to go fishing?”
“Yes“ yelled one of our crew, “ and we’re eating his lunch!”

We were missing beers at the Nelson Yacht Club, so we crossed-decks heading for the wharf inboard of “Friis”. I was ahead of Cardiff in the pedestrian race, and came to the aluminium ladder at the side of “Friis”, which was between us and the wharf, with a short walk to the NYC.

With Cardiff’s head almost up my backside, and to his continued urging to get a bloody move on, I climbed the side of “Friis”, finally reaching deck level

Then, around the deckhouse came, scuttling across the deck towards me, was what I recognised as an Anteater.

I froze, and asked Cardiff, whose head was still pushing me upwards, “ do Anteaters bite?”

You can imagine his comments, as I dashed across the deck to the wharf, and he became aware of the Anteater.


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