Friday, March 31, 2006

Whats to do today? April first

Whoa....... thats self answering!!!!!!!!!!! Mebee a Prank? but before 12-00 or 11-00 in the UK because of BST. Now whats to do? I shall be visiting the office and meet up with the world best "close up magician" (paddy) and now of late, computer "sorterouter". I reckon that as Evadne is always giving me grief and terrified of Mice I will make a small cardboard box with a few air holes in it and a large chewed looking hole in the bottom and sit it on the table whilst I wait for my meal. being nosey she will ask what it is and will be (finally) told at about 10-50. As I wouldn`t have touched it for a while I will pick it up discover the hole in the bottom and upon opening the top find a note that says "I have gone home to my mum signed Mr mouse". I guess that she will climb down from the ceiling and ban me yet again from the A1. What do you think? (dont ask questions "M" doesn`t like it :o)) ) I may seem a little cruel to Evadne but she does keep taking the micky out of anything that I do or eat or say, my very being even, so I think its time to wind her up a little. Now wheres the cardboard? te he!

Tonight we are having dinner with some of our oldest friends one pair have just returned yet again from an around the world trip and are the hosts and the other pair are down here from the midlands to visit yet another friend who isn`t very well at the moment so they are staying at the hosts house. Both sets of friends have made their living in sales (and in fact are still doing so even from the other side of the world) our visiting friends have many properties as well, both at home and abroad along with a private airplane which I hired for an emergency meeting in wales a while back.

We first met as members of a spear fishing/diving club in the days when I had already been playing at diving using a re-manufactured "Calor gas" valve with a single stage high pressure valve. I had made it from a drawing in popular mechanics and it was actuated by a diaphram fabricated from an old lorry tyre with an old "English"penny stuck to it, using the new (then) Araldite adhesive. Phew!!!!! that was a long and booring sentence? it was great to be able to free swim at depth (I had no idea how deep I could go but soon found out that with a Siebe Gorman mark one "demand valve as it became known as, I was a lot safer and the penny didn`t drop off causing the valve try to blow me up like the Mitchelen man. Perhaps thats where the origin of "then the penny dropped" Nah it couldn`t be....... could it?

I am looking forward to tonight and as they live about 60 houses down the road from me and it will be good to walk( lazy s*d) to them, unless its raining. We have a lot to cover in our discussions tonight, all having kids, that grew up togeather, sitting on the beaches in the cold whilst their fathers chased such quarry as Rays, conger, cod and anything edible, scollops crab and the odd Lobster thrown in. I remember a couple of occasions from way back, one of being left out at the Edistone light and having to swim back, fortunately I was picked up within less than a mile of the light itself a fellow expedition member asking where I was on the teams journey back to Milbay dock ( Plymouth) and another occasion being engulfed in a squall about a mile off Selsey bill and being almost swept around the Nab Tower as we drifted helplessly up and down the channel finally to land at Pagham harbour some 8 hours later unable to walk as I was so frozen! Happy daze eh? Where waz I? Oh yes! I am really looking forward to the meal and will let you know how it went tomorrow! ( excert taken from an Old mans dwindling mind)

Different clubhouse

Well tonight we used a different club house for out boat club meet(Our, Weybridge mariners, original one, having burnt down some three weeks ago) the "Walton Jester" was seconded into use as a temporary venue for friday from now on until the club is rebuilt. The walton Jester (lives up to its name with diet coke from 2 litre plastic bottles at £3.00 per pint) is a pleasure boat by day and discos and sight seeing trips are its Forte. I arrived at 20-00 and left at 21-00 the smoky atmosphere was making even the smokers uncomfortable (I am a smoker but I haven`t done it for 20 years so I do believe in live and let live), but tonight was just too bad. It does however make a difference to see some sixty or so people in attendance when there would normally be only maybe 10, pity the club bar wasnt picking up the profit , still never mind I`m not really a grouch, Oh! go on then, maybe I am. At the "Office" today I met a guy that I used to employ to install large rides for me, I havent seen him for at least 10 years . he is Eton and Oxford and his family used to own a very large estate in the midlands until they lost it. He`s a really nice guy and through the last thirty years of his life his main business has been to dredge out lakes "ecologically" with the least damage to the surrounding area. This he does with two Fowler Ploughing engines, ( Traction Engines). Well we jawed a bit and he went back to his car to "get someting" and presented me with a DVD of his business conquests. it does feel strange watching Traction engines dredging lakes on a DVD it just doesnt seem right and such a distance between the technologies, but I guess its the way to go. While I was there I met my old mate Paddy and ex entertainer and another friend Tom the guy currently in the "Ringo" pilot advert, gosh! I mix with the ritch and famous dont I.

I was told by a very good friend that she thought that " we are all in control of our own destiny" well if that is the case? I must try harder, I am really getting P*ssed of with life as I know it, I am missing my boat, which is my own fault as I haven`t got round to finishing the engine and anyway the weather has been cold, so not entirely my fault. When its finished I want to sell it and go back to sail and I have had some opposition from "Swimbo" I need some sun and really feel like dissapearing for a couple of weeks on "walkabout"which I may verywell do,pistorf pistorf! I guess that if I tell myself how lucky I am enough times I will get over it. I guess the next June delivery job in Greece will make me feel a bit better if it happens, the trouble these days is that you get a mail asking you to keep such and such a date free and as the date gets nearer you are finally told that they have changed their mind or sold the boat locally so one can never be certain, the non returnable deposit is never really enough to warrant the hastle, Ho hum!

Wednesday, March 29, 2006

Isn`t it amazing, this blogger lark?

Ive posted about four posts and not one has got to my blog, this is by way of an experiment just to see if it too, doesn`t get there .
I went a shopping yesterday into Kingstom upon Thames and found a shop called Primart where I purchased (for use as overalls on the boat) four pairs of combat trousers. two blue and two a sort of brab olive, for £32, cheap or what I pay more for washed rags! Or have I just done so?. There are so many pockets that I won`t have any trouble getting caught up on my engines, when I eventually squeeze down into the engine "room", this happened to me on another boat and I lay upside down for over an hour until I finally managed to get out. It was quite a nice day, with only a few clouds and the sun was warm. I heard a beautiful singing voice coming from a busker and so wandered to see who it was (why? I really haven`t a clue! I guess that as it was so good, I just wanted to see who the owner was and maybe contribute, no not sing along!) when eventually I got there the owner was an old gentleman of about seventy (certainly ten years older than me) or perhaps he had just suffered a hard life and was ten years younger? he was quite scruffy, and really could have done with some smart new Cargo pants like me :o)). He was very organised though with invertor, "karioki" ( spelling) machine, speakers and batteries, all mounted on a trolley that he could push about. I listened to his selection from the musicals ( his rendition of the Mario Lanza "Be my love" saw him hitting all the high notes and sounding like the man him self, he was really worth the quid I dropped into his pot, (Yea! yea! I know "cheapskate", I didn`t have any more change! alright?!) . I stood in wonderment for about twenty minutes, listening and thinking about how he was once a star of the stage and that the possibility of all that grease paint had ruined his skin (he was, indeed, very lined) or perhaps he was down to his last penny and had to do this to raise food money instead of going on the dole ( pride ) etc, strange how ones mind runs riot when its inactive ( and lets face it mine has been like that for the winter, thank "Your" God for Blogger) I wandered on to starbucks where I purchased a Venti Latti and sat reading the paper for a further half an hour until my wife came and collected me. I`m really getting fed up with her when she arrives late, and says in a loud voice so everyone can hear (Starbucks was heaving), " there you are? thank goodness I found you, where have you been? Ok Mr "my name"! lets get you back to the asylum". although its quite amusing to watch the reaction of the shoppers as I shuffle out of the shop along beside her, possibly tempting fate I guess! sad or what?

Tuesday, March 28, 2006

I met up with..................

An old boating friend of mine yesterday lunchtime, who split from his partner and the boating life two ish years ago. He`s a funny little character (in the same veign that I`m a funny, big, fat, bald, old character!) we had lunch at the "Office" ( A1 cafe) meeting up at 12-00 he has now retired and lives back at home whith his wife (can you believe it?) and still won`t admit to me, his only friend, that at the wekends when he supposedly went to see/stay with his daughter he was actually going home to stay with his wife! he did this for ten years without his partner knowing, Little sh1t, oh ! well it take all sorts I suppose. His ex partner and her new partner are still our good friends too, so you can imagine the position that we found ourselves in when the split "sounded off" but in spite of all the heartbreak she is much better off on her boat with her new man and he is better off in his marital home without the best of both worlds (which is what he wanted "to have his cake and eat it" which I don`t condone). he has inherited money now from the death of his Mother and so is set for life (or is it death?) we jawed about old times and "this time" and "that time" and I felt quite sad for him, not in a patronising way but the sort of a sadness that comes from caring for a person as a friend but feeling that you could never really help them. He is still looking for something out of life that I don`t think he will ever find (don`t we all? lifes a compromise after all or is that only if you accept that it is?) he is a kind and very generous man with his time, I just wish he was truly happy at home. I think he sees it as a temporary thing until he sorts his life out and I think that its a pity he doesn`t expend some of his generosity to his wife, and her feelings. Who am I to talk like this "I aint no saint"! I just felt sad for him and her and hoped that things would be alright in the long run! We parted at about 14-30 and went our seperate ways. I enjoyed our meet but it made me sad too and in fact affected me quite a bit. ( silly old S*d! )

Monday, March 27, 2006

Things to do!

Get the boat back togeather, get it on the market and get back to sail. :o))


My daughters partner has just become a director in a company that owns a 55+ foot charter motor yacht and is going on holiday on it in July. Perhaps she will make her mother look more kindly upon my ownership of a similar vessel, after she has had great holiday on it?

Saturday, March 25, 2006

Sitting boored.........

In Starbucks the other day having read my paper, I picked up my hot chocolate and looking at the family across the tables ( as one often does at the point of contact with ones cofee etc?) I noticed that the kids were watching me intently and giggling to each other, they were about eight and ten and their parents had their backs to me. I realised that they wanted to see what happened to me when I tried to drink the chocolate from under the enormous lump of cream that the proprietor had fitted to the top (yummy) Soooo.... ignoring them I continued and carefully drank my first mouthfull, planting the cream squarley on my nose and then putting the glass down on the table. The kids fell about and laughed and laughed until the parents (with a rather grumpy air about them) turned around to see what the item of amusement was. when they saw me (by now wiping the cream off my nose) they gathered the kids up and left muttering something about old pervert!! I was mortified really mortified, all I had done was make a couple of kids laugh! I really didn`t know what to do or think, Yes I know that in this world there are such people and I know that parents have to be careful, but not to give me the benefit of the doubt and even mentioning what they actually thought, out loud to the kids. I was quite ashamed! I won`t do that again! when my wife finally arrived she asked me what was the matter as It was obyious to her that I was a bit "different" I said "nothing" and we left I knew that if I had told her, she would berated me for not "knowing better" and "Ive told you before about speaking to children and how parents don`t like it" Which really helped me, a lot! not! What a shame that we may have come to this in life! or am I just just being silly?

Friday, March 24, 2006

I have just realised that..........

My last post was really quite M.C.P. (Male chauvenistic piggish!) and I am not like that at all. I have cleaned the house ( a little ) and cut the grass, even though it was wet and I am afraid it looks like a goat has been grazing on green shagpile carpet, with bare lumps of soil all over it. The regular fox runs now stands out even more, as do the holes they dig in the lawn to bury food, (what a pain) I guess if I repair the holes in the fence they will chew others so I leave them to run riot, they are even less aftaid than last year taking it as quite an affront should I make a noise in their garden, poking their heads out from under the shed and looking quite annoyed that I should be in their garden. Its not too cold here at the moment and the rain is slight, I am awaiting a summons from SWMBO to collect her all greasy and "luberly" looking in her new track suit bottoms, suitably rejuvenated and ready to take on the world yet again. Just the right candidate for a babysitting evening at my Sons. I will nip to the indian for a take away on the way. Gosh I really know how to treat a girl. first the Isle of Wight and now an indian takeaway, Whetever next? maybe a week in Madrid and six months on the boat? ????????probably!!!!!!!..............

Think I`ve just missed summer

Well today I am going to watch the Games, I have just finished my Beetroot smoothy, eugh!!!! thanks "Livvie" I don`t reccomend it to anybody. I thought I would have a fasting ish day today started with the beetroot thingy but I guess that the Cafe calls as usual at around 12. 00.

Swimbo has gone to Champneys for a day, so I thought that I should also make an effort. Last night I took Swimbo to my daughters so she would be ready for the "off" today I don`t envy her staying there and having to sleep under my daughters duvet in the guest room which is like weetabix and weighs a ton. I got home about 22-30 and woke this morning at 09- 30 something that I never do when my wife is home. I have about three missed messages from my wife and daughter who can`t understand why I have slept in! I can I have the house to myself and love it! not too sure about the cleaning and domestic stuff but then I won`t have to do any as she is back tonight and we are babysitting for My son and his wife. I am getting worried with all this homey stuff as the boating season is nearly upon us and I need the six months plus to wind down after the inactivity of winter :o))

Wednesday, March 22, 2006

Monday, March 20, 2006

Has it really been 41 years?

I cant believe that yesterday, I have been hapily married for 41 years. I think my wife has been as happy as I have ? but I daren`t ask her in case I am told "actually no I havent been" Oh well! I won`t ask then!
When we married a friend suggested that we spent out honeymoon at Butlins in Cliftonville so we did. I guess that our jaunt to the IOW was, in a way, to reinact the same drab, booring, grubby stay we had then but we were pleasantly surprised. The weather was (as always) crap and cold but the brisk walks and fraternising were the real highlight. Breakfast was like something out of the muppets, (I don`t see us as old) and we were surrounded by many old people and many young too so the mix was OK I felt sorry for an obviously newly married young couple who walked into breakfast on the first day to be greeted (at that time) mostly by "old folks" hand in hand they skurried into a far away corner and weren`t seen again for the rest of the weekend! Ah memories!
I have never really explored the Island and was surprised that I quite enjoyed it, to some degree, even to the extent of looking at a building plot with a mooring at the end of the garden, but It had a few problems, close to a road and with boat access over the mooring from a Marina style encampment to one side! so I won`t go ahead although it was the right price. Shall I go back? maybe to visit my friend but as anything more than a boating stopover on the way back home from Falmouth to Brighton, Maybe not!!

Little fellas holding up the handrail on the five story circular staircase!

I bet it was great in its day

Welcome to Mud Island!

No Doggies Doo on this beach! No beach only Mud! welcome to Mud Island

Tuesday, March 14, 2006

Blogger problem????? seems a lot of them lately

It seems that every time I try to post a photograph I am told that Blogger has a problem and that the engineer has been called so I write a post, and eventually by the time I have finished its sorted, sometines. So I will blog about my old moody 29. I loved that boat and it saw us safely from Dartmouth to guernsey in the worst weather that I have ever experienced in a boat so small, at one time we had 48kt gusts over the deck in a wind over tide situation and we hove to for an hour or so. finally making it behind guernsey some 18 hours later accompanied by a pod of what looked like pilot whales, certainly were large for dolphins. She was a bilge keeler and quite lively in a sea (as you can imagine) whith some slamming but great at antifoul time I just settled her on the small sandy shore in Brixham harbout (with the permission of theHM) and got on with it.

I had her for about three years, and my Jaguar 25 for the preceeding 5 years. My wife who hates sailing, (much preferring not to go to sea in anything other than a Marks and spencers shop) preferred the Jag, with its low headroom and fin keel, ho hum! I sailed the moody mainly single handed as I did the jag, and as far as I can remember only had two real family holidays on any boat that I owned once with my kids when they were young and once (to Guernsey) with my wife. I did however have many weekends and bank holidays. Prehaps my memory is fading and I`m being unkind but it seemed that way, as I spent an awful lot of time on my own on the sail boats.

I have had several good mooring spots for my boats not the least Brixham, on the trots and laterly in the marina for the same price, which I let go, pillock!! where I am still a member of the yach club, Dartmouth at Phillips yard now a development of houses and flats? and Beauleiu opposite the sailing club on a swing mooring. (I have booked a stall at the boat jumble 23rd April to get rid of some bits) I really enjoyed bealieu and its serene charm I can remember sitting on the boat in the misty late evening drinking a glass or chardonnay,and hearing the faint sound or the song two little boys (Rolph Harris) being sung by what sounded like a couple of children and a pair of addults, it was very quiet and as they got nearer it got a little louder until out of the mist a beautiful traditional pilot boat appeared with a small family singing away (still quietly) waving as they past, whith their small single cylinder engine chonking away. Great memories! I loved sailing and still take any oportunity that I get to sail, my last moderate trip was as skipper on a steel, seventy foot ketch to Portugal with two very sick (owner and friend) passengers starting at Brighton via Dover and then biscay to Lisbon. Nice trip, crap weather in Biscay for two days but great after that. Had its moments, we were requested to look for a life raft some twenty miles back from where we had passed that day, in crap weather, to find out that it was a two meter red fishing bouy, and sailing out of lexoes marina in a moderate wind ( engineless) . made me realise that the entrance to the marina is quite narrow for a yacht that size.
I will go back to sailing eventually I think, as it is my main love, but it will have to be a comfortable boat I fancied a 61 roberts but missed it and now have seen a 50 something so I am alert to the options. I still have to fix my port engine ( a month) and get the boat on the market so that could take a while, who knows what the future will bring?

My old Moody moored up river in Dartmouth

I would like to post but!

I have no creative thoughts. as nobody reads my site I will ask for a subject to be donated and see how long it takes to get a reply :o))

Wednesday, March 08, 2006

A House Guest

A friend of ours came to stay whilst we were decorating the lounge and brought her two Cats with her. She loves decorating with a passion as much as I dislike it, so she helped us ( well did most of it actually) As I`m sure you have all deduce in the past I hated small cats but put up with these two.

I have to say that Fergus the ginger one has really got to me, in as much as we have become great friends and I (and my wife) are truly amazed at the bond formed during such a brief visit. I quite like the old sod! They are both , Norwegian forest cats neutered Toms and weigh in at about two stone and very big (for house cats) although a lot of it is hair. Tiger, Lions, Lynx, Jaguars, Pumas, clouded leopards etc , I have known in the past but a ginger tom???? well life changes doesnt it. No I wont be getting one but they are now always welcome at my house.

A Sad day for the weybridge mariners cruising club

Sunday, March 05, 2006

What a strange world I live in?

Things I find tiresome are many and this morning at 02.00 I find lying awake tiresome, particularily as I had no Idea why it had happened, so here I sit Blogging. Usually this phenomina occurs when I turn over and accidently switch on the main room light (placed so conveniently as to require little or no movement to activate it) it does however take a little more than a "bottom clench" and then in my hurry to switch it off I usually hit the tablelight switch and so the words " whats this the Blackpoole illuminations" is heard eminating from the "grumpy one" (who wouldn`t be waken up in such an alarming manner) Oh! I forgot to mention that by now, I have usually uttered a dozen swear words and stubbed my fingers on the switches. All returns to a peacefull state when the lights finally go out but the awakened state remains, well at least for me, Grumpy however goes straight back to sleep, only berating me when the children visit, with the comments "you will never guess what the silly old sod did last week, etc.

But that didn`t happen this time and so here I sit with time on my hands, its too cold to work on my engine in the garage and I could offend the neighbours with the noise so I blog, I could really enjoy blogging if I could post a photo, but A,O,hell and Picashole in their wisdom have decided that I shouldn`t be able to post anymore pictures, so thats another thing I find tiresome P*ssing about with the compbox trying to find out how to overcome the problem,

Unperforated cheap toilet paper, I find tiresome and a really upsetting experience for me and should be sold with a health warning, you waste half your time trying to tear it straight, getting it the wrong size and then in the act you perforate it with your nails, Eugh! definately a health warning should be included.

Today I am about to decorate my lounge and dining room and I hate doing it, I will build a house with pleasure, but decorate it Nah! I hate it. My house has only ever seen emulsion paint and wall paper to me is like a cross to a vampire, I hate it!, you spend days choosing it days hanging it and many days stripping it and then you don`t like it when its hung (well maybe for a few minutes until it went out of fashion) Waste of time, Bah humbug!

I find Drivers along side at the traffic lights looking at me, revving their engines and getting ready for the "off" usually in a sports car or "macroejaculatory ford" with big exhaust are tiresome. I entertain myself whilst stopped, by doing the same and lurching forward a foot, long before the lights have changed to "go" and watch the resultant embarrassment of the rocket jockey as he shoots off trying to beat me only to find himself in the middle of the cross traffic on a still red light. Irresponsible! do I hear you say, yes I reply, but fun, and they deserve everthing they get, which is usually little more that the horn or a minor scrape, but feeling silly whoa! that really is worth seeing, as I drive sedately past, while they back off or around the closely impacted car, and its angry occupant.

Sitting in a friends car travelling across france to fit an engine in a boat for another associate I got bored so I painted a face on and onion with a "magic marker pen"and sitting looking to the front I commenced to do a puppet show for a French lorry driver as we pulled alongside him at sixty K s per hour, I continued to look to the front as if it was nothing to do with me , as "Oliver the onion" was going through his routine when the driver spotted what was going on, out of the corner of my eye I saw him laughing and the next thing a lady, also travelling in the lorry was peering down at Oliver, whilst laying across the driver (you have to remember that I was sitting on the left the lorry driver was driving on the right and we were passing on his right)this went on for a couple of minutes and we finally turned off with the driver and his ladylaughing and waving frantically in appreciation of Olivers act, or so I thought but suddenly the road came to an end with road works and now we had the problem of getting back onto the motorway, I found that tiresome, not having the "road closed" sign in engblishand my friends insistance that I grow up and behave myself. On our way back and whilst Oliver was waving at a couple of Gendarms my mate lost it and Oliver was discharged from duties via the drivers window, as having "done enough damage"and he was not going to have the drivers license take away as part of it. so I sat quietly for a few minutes to demonstrate my "Upsettedness" until I realised that the driver was enjoying the silence so I started againonly this time my puppet was going to be a lady and I was platting her hair into a squirly "Frauline mit motor" style, when the car pulled to a halt and it was explained to me that England was a long walk!

Friday, March 03, 2006

Sad Day!!

Yesterday I received a sad Phone call from the past Commodores wife of our Boat club at Shepperton in surrey. The club house had burnt down to the ground she sadly related. Apparently in the early hours of the morning it was spotted burning and by the time the fire brigade had been called it was too late. The Clubhouse was originally a Boat house and is situated on an Island in the Thames, it is partially built from wood probably in the late nineteenth century. The Lock gates over which we gain access to it were being repaired and so access was a little restricted too. The cause of the fire is as yet unknown and as soon as the fire investigation authorities locate the seat of the fire we shall be told, of that I have no doubt.

Some of the founder members, although aged (older than me) are still around, and I guess that they will be extremely sad. Particularly as we have just renegotiated a further twenty five year lease for it. We are insured and it will be rebuilt but the club as a unit will suffer as a result. Each year we host the ever decreasing numbers of Dunkirk veterans and their boats so I hope we can get up and running by then
So sad! So very sad!!!!