Ships that pass in the night, and speak each other in passing, only a signal shown, and a distant voice in the darkness; So on the ocean of life, we pass and speak one another, only a look and a voice, then darkness again and a silence. – Henry Wadsworth Longfellow: The Theologian’s Tale

I did not see any ships passing during any of our nights along the Wild Coast, although the night sky was so awash with stars one would be hard-pressed to fit another in! These are four of the ships seen passing during the days:

A heavily loaded container going this way – it looks as if the containers have been neatly stacked and are both well-balanced and secure.

Another heavily loaded container going the other way – the containers on this one look far more precarious, which leads to a better understanding of how some containers get lost at sea!

What looks like a speed boat – perhaps those on board were hoping to catch fish?

Then there was a pleasure boat – note the contrast in poverty levels.

And so it is on the ocean of life


This is a Scotch-cart parked outside the museum in Prince Albert. Unfortunately, I couldn’t find any information relating to it inside, although it clearly forms part of the history of transport in this country. Interestingly enough, according to the online dictionaries I have consulted, the name Scotch-cart is of South African origin (only one referred to it being of English origin). As you can see from the photograph, it is a light, strongly built, springless two-wheeled tip cart with a detachable back, which would have been drawn by horses or oxen. These carts were typically used for transporting small loads of, say, gravel, wood, or manure and were popular with farmers. The name may have a connection with the design being thought to have originated in Scotland.

Here is an excerpt from my father’s memoirs in which he recalls such a cart in Wales, where he spent his formative years:

I remember once there was a two-wheeled scotch-cart going along the little track next to the beach on the other side, it was accompanied by a man and a dog. I could hear the rumble of the cart, the sudden spit as the wheel split a small pebble with its iron shod tyre as well as the spoken commands of the man to the horse. It was as though I was standing next to them. W.D. Curror: A Brief History of the Currors.