Monday, October 30, 2006

Summat 2 ponder upon!

To be truly challenging, a voyage, like a life, must rest on a firm foundation of financial unrest. Otherwise you are doomed to a routine traverse, the kind known to yachtsmen, who play with their boats at sea - "cruising," it is called. Voyaging belongs to seamen, and to the wanderers of the world who cannot, or will not, fit in. If you are contemplating a voyage and you have the means, abandon the venture until your fortunes change.

Only then will you know what the sea is all about."I've always wanted to sail to the South Seas, but I can't afford it." What these men can't afford is not to go. They are enmeshed in the cancerous discipline of "security." And in the worship of security we fling our lives beneath the wheels of routine - and before we know it our lives are gone.What does a man need - really need? A few pounds of food each day, heat and shelter, six feet to lie down in - and some form of working activity that will yield a sense of accomplishment. That's all - in the material sense. And we know it. But we are brainwashed by our economic system until we end up in a tomb beneath a pyramid of time payments, mortgages, preposterous gadgetry, playthings that divert our attention from the sheer idiocy of the charade.

The years thunder by. The dreams of youth grow dim where they lie caked in dust on the shelves of patience. Before we know it the tomb is sealed.Where, then, lies the answer? In choice. Which shall it be: bankruptcy of purse or bankruptcy of life?-

Sterling Hayden

Friday, October 27, 2006

Don`t know what his dvd is like but!

His site is worth a read and, inavertantly, contains some very good tips that Mmmmmmm might concider using for funding her world cruise? costs nothing to join but you might like to contribute by purchasing a dvd of his cruise so far? having availed yourselves of his daily log entries. (fousands of them)

Wednesday, October 25, 2006

What a well thought out statement

"I have always had the feeling that these long journeys act upon my system as a thorough cleansing of all the nastiness that accumulates during a period on shore. Once out of sight of the coast, a man is all alone in the presence of his Creator, and he cannot remain a stranger to the forces of nature that surround him. Soon he will be part of these himself, regaining his simplicity and refining himself in contact with the brute forces that embrace him and swallow him up.
And it is this, I believe, this need not simply for novelty, but for physical and spiritual cleanliness which drives the lone sailor towards other shores; there, his body and mind are freed from their terrestrial ties and bondage, and can regain their essence and integrity in the natural elements which the ancients deified. Wind, Sun and Sea: the seaman's triune god!"

Bernard Moitessier

Written before there were as many Woman sailors evident

Tuesday, October 24, 2006

Good Man is RKJ

Here he is pictured at the Dinkirk little ships meet ( in guess where!) Dunkirk on an old diesel powered steam Tug.

Thursday, October 19, 2006

Piccie for Mmmmmmmm !

Notice how straight it is too, except for the "designer" kink in the end! that is :o))

Tuesday, October 17, 2006

Are those seagulls swimming or walking number one?

They appear to be walking Captain! "Oh Shite! full astearn number one"

Sunday, October 15, 2006

Dancing on Tables this weekend!

Well I crossed the solent (both ways this weekend) to the Isle of wight and stayed with a mate on his boat (you know the one whose landing stage we rebuilt). I had a great time and ended up on the Saturday night at a certain hostilery where dancing on the tables is not ony condoned its encouraged. We ended up finally going to sleep at 02.30 Sunday morning Wow!! very late for me. I enclose a photo of the place so those of you who can recognise it might comment as to what its name is (Fuff??)

Monday, October 02, 2006

And the amount left in the dingy

look at the size of that compared to the power plug

Am I a Jonah!

I delivered a 45 foot princess from Brighton to Shepperton last week. We left brighton at 22.00 hours arriving at Hammersmith bridge at 16.00 approximately. As we were about to pass under the bridge we picked up a rope on the starboard engine, stopping it dead and refusing to operate in gear, this caused the boat to turn broadside, I tried to correct this by going astearn on the only operational engine and picked up the rest of the rope causing that engine to stop too. I announced that we had a problem and immediately headed for the anchor to stop the boat from continuing with the tide and impacting with other moored boats close by, whilst the owner and friend who were lowing the radar arch at the time, tried to regain control of the engines ( without any luck).

The pin that released the anchor was firmly stuckin in and no amount of my cursing and pulling would let it free, so I called to the owner, that we would need plenty of fenders to prevent damage in the impact with the by now fast closing moored vessels. I grabbed a large ball fender and fitted it to the most advantageous point and then instructed him to to throw me a long mooring line which he kept on the fly bridge and made my way to the bow (we passed under the bridge broadside with 300 mm to spare and were now able to straighten up the vessel with the use of the bow thruster only, but were travelling astearn in the current of about three knots) I fixed the line to the Anchor winch via the port fairlead and as we were about five metres off the first lot of passing boats, but heading straight for a group of plastic small boats (moored to a footbridge type pier) I instructed the owners friend to take the wheel and the owner who had by now lined the rest of the boat with fenders, to get another long rope ( all though this was unneccery as he was on the case already) and deal with the stearn should he get along side first. I spotted a large mooring ring on the roof, of a soon to pass, canal boat and instructed the owners friend to forget our attitude and just get the boat as close to canal boat as he could with the use of the bow thruster, which he did. We were just about to pass the canal boat when I jumped onto the roof and ran for the ring passing the rope through it with two turns. The flimsyg ring (about 8 mill in diameter) didnt seem strong enough but that was all we had for the moment, I took a quick look around as the rope took the strain, and the boat pulled around to face into the stream. and spotted a stronger cleat on the bopw of the canal boat should I need it in an "emergency". The fenders did their job and the owner jumped off the stearn onto another vessel.

After a few ajustments we breathed again, and our pulse rates returned to normal. The pier "superintendant" immediately appeared (as they do, looking for fees) and asked how long we were intending to stay as we couldnt moor where we were. He was dispached with a king size hornet in his ear as out plight was pointed out to him. we checked the depth of the water and found that it was reducing rapidly which would mean that the vessel would ground in about an hour (something that Princess 45`s cannot do as the rudders are forced through the hull and the integrity of the hull is breached. We called the coastguard explaining our plight and that the vessel was in imminent danger of being holed who dispached the RNLI river rescue to our aid.

Within about four minutes of the call the sirens were heard and the blue light was approaching fast. they pulled along side assesed the problem and we affixed our lines to them for a tow to their station at Chiswick pier, where we could sit quite happily until we fixed the problem (as it didn`t dry out) I have to say that the Lifeboat crew acted with the greatest of proffessionalism, they were well trained and cheerful and their equipment was of the highest standard, they did however pickup a blockage to their port water jet whilst they were towing us and were forced to reduce speed to barely more than the surging current, we all looked at each other with a single thought, would we and they now be sent off down river ajoined, without any control power? It didn`t happen and with good spirits we arrived at the pier where two of the crew were waiting for us, to take lines etc. They (the lifeboat) went alongside inbetween us and the pier and acted as an actual buffer to the pier and lines were exchanged. They then went out astearn and down the pier to their berth, where they commenced the clearing of their jet drive.

We telephoned for the services of a Diver as the owner refused to let me have a go at clearing the blockage when the tide was slack, the current was by now running well. He arrived at slack water the next day and managed to clear the port prop and shaft, but the tide beat him and he wasn`t able to clear the starboard one. We waited for the tide to be suitable ( draft wise) for passage along Sion reach and on to Richmond half tide lock where the barrier would be open and progressed up river on one engine and entered the non tidal waters above Teddington lock where the diver could work with impunity having little worries about the tide.

The diver returned at 08.30 the next day and cleared the rest of the rope ( which was 9 inch circumference, green and white barge rope, about thirty feet of it, Ouch! Thankyou Mr Cory) We returned up river to Shepperton where the owner was supposed to be attending a Commodores sail past and was by now a couple of hours late he did however make a run past the other moored boats whith the commodore aboard and we dipped our ensign in salute, whereupon the commodore replied with his own salute. God only knows what they all thought of the ragamuffing crew in heavy weather gear, no blazers and white slacks for us that day. We settled on the owners mooring about ten minutes later as the torrential rain stopped. The boat will be lifted out for drive train inspection, on Tuesday and the gearbox integrity investigated for damage.

As a "govenor", and full supporter of all things to do with the RNLI and having now had to call them twice in my boating life ( the first time whilst diving off Selsey Bill and watching the boat sink past me in mid water) I have to say that they provide a brilliant service, their crews are fully dedicated and professional, and their tea is brilliant! thanks again Guys for a job well done.

Lifes never dull is it?
"Am I really a Jonah?"