This island is the Spanish equivalent of the Greek sex rock of Mykonos, except its waters are murkier, its nightclubs and restaurants far more expensive. But its hookers are first-class and not to be compared to anything selling itself in Greece. Why that is so, I don’t know, but Greece gets the dregs where the world’s oldest profession is concerned, whereas Ibiza and Spain reign supreme. No, I did not indulge, but I invited a few girls to come on board for a drink very late at night and once they were done with their libations they offered sex.
Now sex is a hard subject to deal with in print. I haven’t ever gone into detail about it — it’s simply not my way — and I plan to keep it that way. Perhaps if I had the comic talent of Jeremy Clarke, who recently wrote 900 words about how he held back a mob of Spaniards trying to burst into a public lavatory where his girl was chopping up coke while he was servicing her, then maybe. But my style is more suited to fulminating against social wrongs and crap such as PC, so sex remains unmentionable. Which doesn’t mean that a young Spanish hooker who stripped to the waist and offered me a condom to help me make up my mind wasn’t a real beauty. The trouble was that day was just breaking, both Michael Mailer and I were dead drunk, the crew was casting anxious glances as the girls were freely circulating in and out of cabins, and the big race was about to start. So sex took a back seat for once, and off we went with high hopes for victory as during the practices my boat had been the fastest by far.
Well, you’re not going to read about the race, at least not from this scribe, the reason being that the ancient Olympic spirit is somehow absent — dead in the water, in fact. It was the annual Pug’s Club regatta, held in a different venue each year. This year it returned to Ibiza where the very first race took place seven years ago. The celebratory dinner following Roger Taylor’s Tigerlily’s victory still resonates in most of our livers. I thought I had a good chance of finally winning one, especially after having been gypped out of victory by an egregious handicap last year in St Tropez. It was not to be.
My captain had a dream start, crossing the line just as the cannon went off, and building up a good lead by the time we reached the halfway point. Then the wind dropped and one of the slowest boats reached us and then passed us, the smell of its exhaust polluting the air as well as our spirit. The owner, a very good friend whose name I temporarily forget, got bored splashing around waiting for the wind and reverted to his engine. Behind us, Tara Getty’s sailer and defending champion did nothing of the sort, but tacked back and forth desperately trying to close a gap that was getting bigger. The fumes were by now visible. ‘I’m proud to be an American,’ said Michael, looking at the Getty boat.
By the time the awards ceremony came round, everyone was drunk and in a forgiving mood. It was held on board Tara’s Blue Bird, magnificently restored and relaunched in 2007 — a 104.5ft 1938 classic that won the World Superyacht award for best refit some time ago. Although it is not a sailing boat, Getty’s marvel is my favourite thing afloat. It’s a perfect size, with old-fashioned looks and none of those disgusting new refrigerator panels that Russian mobsters favour. And Tara was noble in defeat, his morality in refusing to turn on an engine among all the cheaters matching his bank account. (He was racing on a smaller sailing boat, the Blue Bird serving as the mother ship.)
One thing that puzzled me was my friend Michael Mailer’s travel plans. He flew out from Spokane, Washington state, where he was scouting locations — Michael is the producer of the greatest film ever made, Seduced & Abandoned, starring Taki, Alec Baldwin, Ryan Gosling and some lesser stars — via Los Angeles, New York, Berlin then Ibiza. Now I was never any good at geography, but going east in order to go west simply doesn’t make sense. Had Michael been drinking? My lips are sealed, but somehow his compass went all wrong. He flew for 20-odd hours to spend 48 hours without sleep onboard my boat, only to fly another 20 hours back. He must be a travel agent’s dream, but I’m seriously worried about his health.
Otherwise everything is hunky-dory. I am going on the wagon for three days in order to relocate my liver, wherever it is right now, will send a contribution to an old hooker’s home in Ibiza, and next year will demand all boats have sealed engines otherwise they won’t have the poor little Greek boy to kick around any more. Anchors aweigh!
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