Anchored off Brightlingsea, we decide to go for a walk ashore on Mersea Island. The pilot book promised a feast at the Oyster Company, where we could buy fresh crab, lobster and other shellfish, and a convenient walk to the local pub afterwards.
The forecast predicted a force 6, and we'd not been anchored in that wind strength before, so we left Dad on board to supervise, and catch up on some work he'd brought along. The rest of us went over to the beach, which turned out to be made mainly of broken shells, much to the interest of the little and big kids among the crew.
Following the shore path around, we eventually came to Pyefleet Oyster Company, only to find them closed. Darn. Time for a snack and a purposeful walk to the pub.
The route was not clear. However, we asked a friendly local householder, who pointed us on our way. We walked on, only to find said householder turning up in his 4x4 to offer us a lift. "No, it's fine" says Nick ,but Gesa saves the day and says "Yes please". It turns out the pub is still 2 miles distant, so the ride was very welcome. Many thanks, sir, whoever you are.
The pub serves food, but our enquiries about a small snack were not met kindly as they were rushed off their feet catering to the 3-course Sunday lunch customers. Feeling a bit like second class citizens, we finished another bag of crisps and humbly snuck out to stroll back to the boat. The walk home was along the south side of the island, where the sea is slowly, or maybe not so slowly, eating away at the mud cliffs that underlie an enormous caravan park, so there is justice in this world after all.
Back at the beach, the little bridge over a creek had been submerged by the high tide, but it was only a foot deep so you could still feel your way across it. Max, somewhat predictably, fell off the side into the deeper water, saturating his clothes on the way. He walked somewhat like a cowboy without a horse for the last few hundred yards before we called in to the mother ship and ordered up a dinghy ride.
A quick blast across the river in the dinghy procured fish and chips all round for the hungry crew and finished off a fun day for all.