Trip Start Dec 22, 2011
129Trip End Apr 18, 2012
Map your own trip!
Show trip route
Check your pockets, was the watchword.
Breakfast sorted, (still pretty slow but an improvement on yesterday's farce) it was all aboard the bus and off to the oyster farm. There were just 6 of us, Rob and Carole, John and Jan, us and Nadine the guide.
Arriving at the farm we were sorted out with waders. Smart.
Nick picked me up by my waders and gave a shake which helped pull mine up a little
After a brief talk on the growth of the oyster and the general workings of the farm, we were led out into the oyster nursery where we could see them in their boxes a growin'. They are bought in as almost specks and put into boxes into the water to grow. Moved after a few weeks or months to new boxes and graded as to size, the growing process continues. They are usually eaten at about 2 years, but can live far longer than that and Nadine showed us some later that were massive. A real knife and fork job they would be. Probably carve up as a Sunday joint even. Yuk.
Walking in the water in waders was a weird sensation and it took a while before I was totally convinced that water would not seep through.
After we had seen them at all stages of growth, Nadine picked out an oyster and showed us how to shuck it. Who would like to eat it? No Prizes for that one, Nick always ready to help slurped it down.
How many oysters would we all like?
Extracting the oyster orders, we waddled across to a table in the water, which was covered with a white table cloth, the champagne and glasses were found from her backpack and we were off
Having opened the oysters, the remains of the muscle on the shell we held under water and they were quickly snaffled by a hungry swirling crowd of mullet. Once or twice they went for our fingers in their haste to eat the remnants off the shell.
Tasting some of the red samphire was also in order, before watching the grader shake and grade the oysters in the shed into 4-5 different buckets according to size.
It had been interesting, but not made me want to try them.
What a wuss!
The next excitement was a cookery demo back at the ranch.
Again, only a select few: Elly, Nicky, Encarnita and myself.
Unfortunately I had not read the instructions and was dressed in my £2.50 matumba cut offs and a slighlty grubby classic Jaguar Touring polo shirt. Wrong again. Encarnita was exquisitely attired in what I would class as a "very posh frock indeed". Black with magnificent sequinage and diddly doodah
"What can one expect from Primark?"
"Prrrrrymarrrrk? I won' go therrre... go to Selfrrridges!" She purred in her delicious Spanish way. since then we have had ongoing banter about the two establishments, but I am beginning to think maybe Selfridges has stuff what Primark don't.
But perhaps I am mistaken.
However, the demo over and uncommonly for me still having a clean frontage, I slipped back with the spoils of war for Nick to sample, as it were not my kind of fare...
One of the funny moments of the day came when I went back to the room and forgotten my key. Earlier on we had seen Nowell banging on the door of his room as he was locked out. He didn't know it, but Bibbi was actually up in the bar, imbibing, as her name would suggest.
However, I was just about to scrabble under the outer courtyard door, when Nick heard my plaintive scrabblings and opened the room door and came to rescue me
Except, of course, there is a photo to record it...
Drinks in the bar were protracted and fun. At last I got to talk to Hilary and Ted who look great fun and indeed that proved the case. John Nixon joined us, and we sat and enjoyed the hospitality of the bar until about 9pm, when we sauntered back to savour the delights of dinner a la deck once more... only this time, word had got round and we were joined by a baby wallaby which we spotlighted with the bright beam of the Saffire torch.