The small pleasures

© JL.Jamet/Tara Expéditions

2 October 2014

It’s these little moments that are almost insignificant, instants that punctuate life onboard to the delight of everyone. The bell we love to ring at mealtimes, a childish reflex, exquisite, to be allowed to make noise.

There are also the smells wafting from the ovens starting at 10am, circulating in the dining area and even into the PC Com room, to tease our noses. Difficult to resist the urge to take a look in the kitchen to see what Do (Dominique Limbour) our cook, is concocting. Some even conduct a “quality control,” but that’s not really allowed. 

For sailors, no doubt, the meals set the rhythm, and eating well onboard is a must. The crew’s morale depends in part on their stomachs. And our magician cook carries out her task perfectly. For food lovers, like Nico (Nicolas de la Brosse) our first mate, the little pleasure is in a bowl of Chocapic cereal at breakfast. Beware to the mischievous ones who have fun hiding it from him!

Responsible for preparing breakfast, Do takes pleasure in getting up before everyone to make tea for herself, or to take a dip alone. Selfish? No, finding time for yourself is necessary when you’re living with 14 other people for several months on a boat. Some would even say self-preservation! No wonder then that the sailors appreciate the famous night shifts, special moments to be “master of the boat” or to “have the boat for themselves.” Waking up in the middle of the night and doing their shift is not a chore: 2 hours of freedom that delight Mathieu (Mathieu Oriot) and allow him time to read a book or fill the pages of his notebook.

While sailing, the nightwatch is carried out by 2 people: a sailor and a scientist together to ensure the boat and safety of all. In the privacy of the wheelhouse, there is no better opportunity to discuss, remake the world and create friendships. The best nightwatch? It’s 4 to 6 am “at the beginning it’s pitch dark, everyone’s asleep,” says Nico, “then life slowly returns, the sun rises and you see little heads appearing in the boat.”

Here on Tara, the small pleasures are multifaceted: going barefoot until your soles become thick as leather; taking a reading break after carefully choosing a book. Comfortably installed on the boom of the mainmast, the reader can go hunting mammoths with Bernard Buigues or, like Samuel, discover the secret of Easter Island sitting on the bow.

When the crew changes like today, a switchover between present and past takes place. All these privileged moments are transformed into so many memories, and with the arrival of new people, the small pleasures of Tara continue to be written.
Noëlie Pansiot
Related articles:

- Viewpoint by Clémence Lesacq, writer, embarked on the Tara Mediterranean expedition.

– The link between what happens on board and the rest of the world.

– Program Tara Mediterranean