As we've traveled through piracy country we've had to keep the decks clear at night and the drapes are drawn in the large gathering rooms. We heard today that this ship, the Nautica, was tracked and chased by pirates in this area a few years ago.
Our enrichment lecture today was appropriately on piracy. Dr. Roger, the lecturer, is rather a Jack of all Trades and give talks on history and culture with particular emphasis on things naval. He began by saying that should we be pirated, the British government would be willing to give the pirates three million pounds to keep us - the amount the government would save on pills once a boatload of old farts were removed from British Health.
He spoke about many of the famous pirates including a few females who were particularly vicious. We laughed at his suggestion that the famous pirate saying: "Yo hoho and a bottle of rum," might be changed to "Yo hoho and a bag of knitting." Grace OMalley, as one example, was an Irish pirate with a number of children. One fell overboard. He attempted to reboard the Mother Ship, getting his hands over the sides to hoist himself up. Grace used her scabbard to cut off both of his hands, stating that a son of hers stupid enough to fall overboard wasn't getting back on. So there! As Dr. Roger pointed out parenting is quite different now.
Some merchant ships in the Indian Ocean took aboard Ghurkas for protection. The Ghurkas had to draw blood if they pulled out a knife. If it wasn't an enemies blood it was their own. They were serious.
A couple of my personal pirate myths were shattered. Dr. Roger says there is a record of only one instance of "walking the plank" executed by a female pirate known as "Sadie the Goat." There is record of only one skull and crossbones flag. You'd have to be pretty stupid to announce to the world that you were a pirate ship.