Kicking my heels waiting for the fishermen’s protest to start, I wandered out to the ferry port to tickle a few fish and tease a few crabs – you know the sort of thing “didn’t I see your uncle in a jar of Princess Spread? Normally there is a pretty steady diet of ships around Los Cristianos but lately there has been more variety and a few bigger cruise liners to come.
Moored up across from the ferry terminal was a two mast elegant visitor called Tecla, moving in for a closer nosey I could see it had a Dutch flag and a banner advert for potential crew on the gangplank. I have been on several of the tall ships that call in Santa Cruz, they do a nice line in adventure trips where you can get hands on experience of climbing the rigging, scrubbing decks, steering, and navigating – for a fee.
The route for the next voyage was displayed on the banner and looked full of promise including Cape Verde, Brazil, South Africa, Mauritius, Australia and Bermuda. One of the three permanent crew explained they were taking on up to 16 trainees of Dutch, German, and Belgium origin for the vast voyage that would stretch to well over a year.
I know you are longing for the lowdown, the schooner was built in 1915 in Vlaardingen to gather herring from the north sea but had to retire to Holland in 1935. Sold to a Danish buyer thee current name replaced the original Graaf van Limburg Stirum and off she popped to haul grain, stone and turf along the Denmark coast. Eventually in 1979 the ship had a re-fit in Holland and started a new life as a charter ship. It was a nice little extra for me on my early evening stroll, especially as it was a short stop with an early morning next day departure for new liquid challenges. Fair winds to you Tecla and may thee barnacles never bother your bottom.