Ladies, if ever you are on a life raft with the man of your dreams – unlikely, I know, but hey – here’s a lesson in how to behave.
In June 1975, an Englishman named Anthony John Pike and his Australian girlfriend Jennifer Robyn Fairfax-Ross, arrived in Port Everglades aboard a cruise ship.
You might think that there’s nothing unusual about that, as people arrive here from cruises every day but the S.S Fairwind hadn’t originally had them as passengers. The pair had been en route from South Caicos Islands to Haiti when their schooner, Gypsy, had capsized.
On a six foot life raft, they had survived for several days living on emergency rations and – sorry about this – the raw flesh of a seagull. Yuk. Anthony told reporters that his girlfriend had wanted them to marry for quite some time but he’d had a couple of unsuccessful marriages and wasn’t about to embark on a third.
Her behaviour on the life raft had changed his opinion, however.
After being rescued by the cruise ship and getting back to dry land, Anthony explained why. “The qualities she showed on the raft convinced me” he said “She remained cheerful and never blamed me for getting her into this position. I figured, a woman like that, if I don’t marry her, someone else will”.
(Personally, I would have slapped him for being so patronizing but never mind that, I don’t want to spoil the story).
He propsed to her during their time on the raft.The couple planned to marry as soon as possible in Miami.To further the idea that the British are truly eccentric, they told reporters that they would keep the life raft in the living room of their home as a memento.
I wonder if they did?