elf over twaalf

On Sunday we went wakeboarding with Ric in Middle Harbour. I had a great time swimming around the beach, riding in the boat and attempting to wakeboard. After six attempts I was unable to get up, although I did manage to get dragged underwater. I didn’t want to give up and let go of the rope. I had to stop as I had swallowed a lot of saltwater and felt like I was holding up the more experienced wakeboarders. I returned to the beach for ball games and swimming.

Whilst at the beach I had time to ponder my foolishness. On Friday I bought a new mobile phone, outright. On Sunday I swam in the harbour with the phone in my pocket. I only realised that it was there when it went into its death throes, and suddenly started vibrating constantly. After a little while, it stopped. An expensive lesson.

After a bit of a swim I reapplied sunscreen and prepared for my next challenge: water-skiing. It took me quite a number of tries, in front of boatloads of laughing spectators, before I managed to get up, which I did twice. I never went further than 50 metres, but it still felt like an accomplishment.


Henk just called me and asked “hoe laat is het?” but I became flustered and couldn’t answer. The Dutch tell the time by a complicated system of addition and subtraction and under the pressure of the moment I couldn’t calculate the answer and then translate it into Nederlands. The answer was, of course, elf over twaalf.

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