So, well-padded in our life jackets, we had to slither down a rather steep ramp, not to a teeny tiny green tender in fact, but to a waiting inflatable boat, known as a Zodiac.
This was possibly the most exciting part of the whole trip in terms of speed and closeness to the waves, but I was not able to take any pictures as we were told to put our cameras away, to avoid their getting wet and also so we might have our hands free to hold on, since we all sat round the edge of it. A couple of trips and we were all aboard, and were very happy to learn we could divest ourselves of the life jackets, they were only for the trip across.
Early in my short-lived career as a primary teacher, I was set to work with two five-year-olds to make a big long poster-type-thing illustrating their recent trip somewhere or other. One of them, when I suggested making a picture of how they went on the coach, had no difficulty in drawing a recognisable picture of a such a bus and a group of children outside it waiting to get on board, though she had never in fact had such a view of it. The other looked bothered, struggled and failed to represent an image of the inside of the coach from her seat as she recalled it. This was a textbook case some Piaget-designated shift in cognitive functioning, probably involving other terms I've now happily forgotten, that takes place at that kind of age and stage, whereby we learn to de-centre and see ourselves in situations from the outside. However, it seems to me the second, less advanced child's view was more true to perceived reality; having been unable to catch a satisfactory sideways-on view of the Ste Jeanne from the shore, once on board it wasn't possible to do so, of course.
But I was able to pull this jib sail up.
Otherwise, the images one could collect gather were all from the viewpoint of on board the boat, looking up and down and out and along, various masts and booms and bowsprits and such like, skyward and seaward, at various angles:
or at various sheets and halyards and stays and shrouds and other bits of cordage, and various marlin spikes and cleats and clews and other satisfying bits of gear and tackle:
However, we were joined for the party by a diverse small fleet of other craft,
which afforded the opportunity to get some longer shots, notably the Pauline, about which I've written before. I photographed her rather a lot,
and also the two smaller old-style sailing boats we had already seen waiting in the harbour
this slightly larger one with the dark hull was Mimosa,
but the slightly smaller white one I didn't catch the name of (on enlarging it a lot it may be Léon, I'll have to check the full-size photo).
It was very calm on the sea. Later Mimosa changed her regular jib for a Genoa, a term for which I had to search my memory and, chiefly, the internet. Whatever its appellation, I found the bold black shape of it aesthetically very pleasing.
We didn't really go anywhere much, pootled about in the bay, went a bit further up the headland towards the seashore quarry for the famous pink sandstone (not pink granite here, whatever anyone tells you...), which had been the Ste Jeanne's main source of cargo, all the way over to England sometimes, and also her nemesis when they overloaded her with it. But it was deeply satisfying, we came away very relaxed and happy.
Tom even got given a smaller lighter life jacket for the return to shore, so he looks happier.
We had proper Italian style soft whippy ice cream cornets on the way back to the car, (with a momentary pang that there was no one to give the last point of the cone with a residue of ice cream in it), and as we turned to look back, we observed the tide had come in so that Ste Jean could come round to the inside of the harbour to pick up her next load of passengers, and so show us a perfect, sideways-on, long view of her in full sail.
A lovely afternoon on the water. For more details about the Ste Jeanne, see the website, or there's an English one from the Erquy tourist website here.