On Wednesday, we docked at Pomene. The first boat transfer to the island was at 7.45am. Despite still being in bed, the buzz around disembarkation was so infectious that my mum and I ended up getting ready sooner than we had planned.
It was a scorching hot day and as soon as we were seated on the transfer boat, we draped the beach towel around our exposed skin. As it drew closer to the shoreline, where the fine-grained white sand met the azure ocean, the desire to get off grew stronger. Thankfully, it wasn’t a long ride. But we kept our sandals on as the sand was like a furnace. Following the signage boards, we got to our booked beach cabana for the day.
I plonked myself on a deck chair and pulled out my novel while my mother, changing at the speed of a flash, got into her shorts and made a beeline for the beach. That she forgot her cruise card or to put on sunblock mattered little to her. It was three hours later when she returned with a friend, wearing the biggest smile, oblivious to the scowl on my face, which quickly dissipated at the sight of her joy.
She was having a blast and went on to rave about how she had made some new friends and joined them for the braai lunch. She wasn’t the only one having a blast. Other holidaymakers were snorkelling, doing the mangrove tour, kayaking or shopping at the small market run by the locals.
There is plenty to do - or not - depending on how you want to spend your day on Pomene. I preferred to be a beach bum. The day before we returned to Durban, members of the media were invited to a gastronomic five-course luncheon with Captain Ciro Pinto and the crew. I was seated next to hotel director Luigi Tronfo and chief engineer Antonino Coppola and within earshot of the captain, who regaled us with interesting tales of his travels.
Tronfo shared his career journey and spoke about his family back home. None of us fully recovered from lunch, but the Italian-themed dinner night was an unmissable affair. And it was our last night to bond with our fellow travellers before sailing back to the continuum of our fast-paced lives. Oh well, the island break was fabulous while it lasted!