Yesterday was one of the biggest days in the Tristan calendar. Everyone celebrates going on three weeks summer holidays over Christmas. Staff at each of the government departments and the fish factory start off with a communal breakfast – of (variously) eggs, bacon, sausages, beans, bread, toast, tea coffee and beer! And that is then followed by all-day office parties.
Everyone except us that is – because we need to make the most of any good weather. We had originally planned to squeeze in a camping survey expedition before Christmas. The morning was promising and we were set to go a 6.30 when my work partner, Lourens, suggested we ought to go to the Conservation Department breakfast and set off afterwards.
So while having breakfast (at my house as it turned out) the weather turned suddenly nasty. Which was just as well as we could then participate in the day’s celebrations with a clear conscience. The idea is that you circulate from party to party. I went round five different office parties. The liveliest was the Post and Tourism Office party – where people were dancing. The best food (delicious homemade pizza) was at the Comm.s Dept. party in the Internet cafe. The most drinking seemed to have happened at the Admin Dept. party judging by the number of empties lying around by the time I got there! After a short interlude it was off to a braai in the evening. Tristanians certainly know how to party!
The weather is still bad today so sadly our expedition had to be postponed yet another day (phew!)