Going on the Account: Sighted Prizes (A Round-Up)

Three items of interest:

* The Spanish government has paid the ransom for the crew of the Alakrana.  Prime Minister Zapatero’s claim that his government “did what it had to do” doesn’t exactly help the effort at suppression; the fact that two warships were there for the hand-off can’t have left a good feeling among the crews of other ships on station out there.

On the other hand, the two Somali pirates in custody taken October 3rd are still in the hands of Spanish authorities, which raises an interesting prospect:  Removing men from the sweet trade but paying off the rest.  I’m not sure this is going to have any good long term effects if the remaining pirates decide that not having to break down their ransoms into smaller shares means that whoever’s left just tries harder.  Sort of like an American company trying to gain efficiencies with less staff…

* Matt Gross at the NEW YORK TIMES describes putting to sea in the Carib by paying your way as crew aboard a two-mast schooner for a mere $55 a day.  This fee gets you sailing experience, customs clearances and two meals a day, as well as passage along the routes the pirates took.

No word if there’s a way to get a discount by taking less shares if the crew decides to take over and go on the account…

* If there’s any interest in making a film of this novel (yeah right…) the perfect stand-in vessel can now be purchased.  EasternYachts.com has for sale the STS Jean de la Lune, a brigantine that’s about the right dimensions for the Raging Gale.  Her rig is pretty close too, though the pilot house would have to be moved astern to place the quarterdeck atop her.

And it’s a steal at a mere ₤395,000.  With the holidays coming up, he said placing very, very broad hints…

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