October 17

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17th Oct. –Glass falling heavily this morning, to our great disgust. Wind back in the SW and much warmer. Starting at 5.30 we tacked on the tide over the “water-shed” behind Spiekeroog. So did the galliot we had seen last night, but we again missed identifying her, as she weighed anchor before we came up to her berth. Davies, however, swore she was the Kormoran. We lost sight of her altogether for the greater part of the day, which we spent in exploring the Otzumer Ee (the gap between Langeoog and Spiekeroog), now and then firing some perfunctory shots at seals and sea-birds… (nautical details omitted). . . In the evening we were hurrying back to an inside anchorage, when we made a bad mistake; did, in fact, what we had never done before, ran aground on the very top of high water, and are now sitting hard and fast on the edge of the Rute Flat, south of the east spit of Langeoog. The light was bad, and a misplaced boom tricked us; kedging-off failed, and at 8 p.m. we were left on a perfect Ararat of sand, and only a yard or two from that accursed boom, which is perched on the very summit, as a lure to the unwary. It is going to blow hard too, though that is no great matter, as we are sheltered by banks on the sou’-west and nor’-west sides, the likely quarters. We hope to float at 6.15 to-morrow morning, but to make sure of being able to get her off, we have been transferring some ballast to the dinghy, by way of lightening the yacht–a horrid business handling the pigs of lead, heavy, greasy, and black. The saloon is an inferno, the deck like a collier’s, and ourselves like sweeps.

‘The anchors are laid out, and there is nothing more to be done.

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