Jochen, an industrial chemist, is a competent and careful sailor. He and Axel hit it off immediately and he provides an excellent foil for my curmudgeonliness and Axel’s youthful and at times chaotic exuberance. The three of us get on well, our only problem being that happy hour starts quite early and tends to be a lengthy and boisterous affair.
As tough and seaworthy as she is, by modern standards Tainui is not a large boat for her length. Three is the right number of crew for ocean passages and there is room enough for our personal and physical spaces. Axel and his guitar share the forecabin with our storm sails, a folding bicycle and various other impedimentia. His is a cabin to be avoided. Jochen inherited the aft cabin – the playpen – from Sonja. As always, I sleep in the saloon so that I have quick access to the cockpit. The chart table is sacrosanct and nothing extraneous is allowed to rest there. At sea I am also a bit fussy about the cockpit being kept constantly tidy. The galley is for all. Temperatures hereabouts being what they are we do not dine below.