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You can tell a skipper who has been in port awhile for as surely as night succeeds day, at some point his washing will be festooned along the guard wires, flapping gently in the breeze and occasionally escaping in a gust. This is when you wish you had Kalvin Klein smalls and matching socks. So it was that I dressed A-Jay overall with my eclectic washing on my return from days of Birthday celebrations in Dublin, though the dearth of sunlight and warmth meant it flew noisily for 2 days before it dried.
A fashion conscious skipper should therefore select his wardrobe with care, just as a sensible skipper will choose his boat name with care as it may well be used during a VHF conversation particularly in an emergency. Can you imagine calling; “Mayday! Mayday! This is yacht Cirrhosis of the River …” (yes, it really is the name of a boat…)
I find it takes a little while to get back into gear so I adopted the usual Willis Saga mode and decided to make a little list, which is not a natural thing for me to do. However, as the passage of anno domini inevitably brings forgetfulness, a list becomes essential though two copies are best as you are sure to lose one.
Billy the Bilge pump needed finishing, Harry the autopilot Mk3 needed a new plug, the main sail needed to be changed at some point, the nose bag needed preparing, all the usual system checks needed doing and of course, I had to decide on the next destination and then do the passage planning. There were many other things to do, but at that moment, they eluded me. Embracing all this is always the weather, which will ultimately dictate the final shape of any Willis master plan. Currently it is blowing Force 8…..
If you tarry awhile in Poolbeg, you will eventually discover hidden beauty in Sandymount, a wide sweeping shallow bay and village, which softens the harsh industrial aspect that is Poolbeg and the docks. For a while you can lose yourself in a park and enjoy views out to sea as you march to Sandymount’s Tesco 1 ½ miles off. I headed that way because refreshments were required as Cousin Sarah and travelling companion were in Town, en route back from Iceland ……..
It had been mentioned that my master plan included no more stops on the English West coast so I spread the chart out and looked across the Irish Sea to see how this might be rectified. I decided to avoid the IOM as the TT was in full flow, so Holyhead it will be, which is about 58 nautical miles to the East. If the forecast is to be believed, we might even be able to sail there ………