Farewell Emerald Isle

It’s the people you meet, not the personal triumphs you achieve that make a journey special ….. Nigel was from Poolbeg, now lived in Arklow and was the proud owner of CoCo, all 38 feet of her. No mean sailor he had done a leg of the BT Global Challenge, through which he had met Pete Goss.

He handed the keys of his car to Pete and so began a memorable day out in the mountains inland from Wicklow. Fortunately more pub lunch and cream tea than yomping, I was pleased to note. It was nice to be able to actually see the scenery for once, though Irish rain could not leave us entirely alone.

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Looking Down from Sally’s Gap

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Look Closely, the Bath Plug is a Joke☺

Sipping a Coke that evening, I listened to the proprietor’s story. Made redundant when times were hard he declined to take his company pension, trusting that things would remain as they were, but things worsened and what he expected would be his monthly income became his annual income. Time to put bad luck aside and find work again, which he did with resolution and a smile.

This will be the last notes written here for some time as I sense Team A-Jay will be at sea awhile, so the rest of this blog will be born from scruffy notes along the way. Meanwhile the sun is my friend, Fair winds are expected, so tomorrow we leave though I expect to see little of Pete and Tracey Goss, except the fast disappearing, elegant stern of Pippin for I suspect Pete is a tad competitive!☺

Toot toot

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By ajay290

Arklow and Beyond

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Cormorant Island

There’s a floating platform in Avoca River whose purpose I know not, but the cormorants do: each has his own spot, a perfect place to dry wings and have a nap. They are surprisingly big birds out of the water, well fed too as none batted an eyelid when a trout jumped a metre out of the water in front of them.

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Pete Goss aboard Pippin

I’ve long been a fan of the Vancouver 34 Pilothouse, just like the one moored ahead of me here. Well you could have knocked me down with a feather when I discovered the skipper of ‘Pippin’ to be none other than Pete Goss, ably assisted by his First Mate and wife Tracey. I met him admiring ‘Smiley’ and it was a real privilege to meet the great man and to steal one of his custard creams.

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Pete Goss’ Pippin

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Over dinner aboard Pippin, I felt very much in the ‘junior dorm’, especially as I have not the courage or skill to beat into a Southern Ocean F12 – Wicklow Head on a bad day is enough for this skipper.  Pete and Tracey plan to go cruising gently, though I daresay he would relish any new challenge, so they will depart at the weekend when the weather should have relaxed a little – Sound plan …….

No plan is any good unless it is designed to be rewritten as necessary; the current Master Plan is being redrafted for the nth time as Pete’s friend and skipper of the Rosslare Milford Haven ferry reported 30 knots and 2.5 metre waves in St. George’s Channel earlier, so Team A-Jay will tarry a while. Time to put the skipper’s steak and kidney stew on hold and enjoy a bowl of chowder, accompanied by a modest mal de tete, the lingering after effects of Shell’s finest, or perhaps the Goss’ hair restorer from the night before.  Talking of stew, I gather Sir Robin Knox Johnston is famous for his 70 day curry, so I have a little way to go yet.

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Arklow for the Second Time

Ray the Radar has water on the brain and can no longer focus on detail, a bit like the Skipper so Binny the Binos and the paper chart will have to do – after all, sailors managed before without electronics. Checking him out was all part of Team A-Jay’s ship board routine, to which others such as Espresso prep have been added. I hung the Polish flag, a gift from Marek, in the little saloon and touch it to wish the Team luck before sailing. Daft but fun.

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On Avoca River

Senior moments are very much part of this Skipper’s repertoire and I confess to rather enjoying the occasional one, especially as I like a good cuss and a pause to regain lost thoughts or bearings. As the great Pooh said – or was it Eeeyore? – “Sometimes I sits and thinks, and sometimes I just sits.”

At least I am still capable of recognising Senior moments, which must be a positive sign, so there’s life left in this old brain yet. But then there is no one around to notice if I have missed one and Team A-Jay are far too loyal to say, even if they could.

 

Toot toot from Arklow, a proper unpretentious little town.

By ajay290

In Irish Rain Again

As a dear friend has just reminded me, I have yet to mention Herbie the Heads, but that’s really because he has been temporarily replaced by Chuck, the Bucket. Needless to say Herbie remains a valuable member …. Er where was I?

Ah yes, chasing down the diamond road in the early morning, senses dangerously dulled, so the skipper had to get a grip as the temptation to go for’ard to sort fenders and warps whilst Harry drove was overwhelming, something that HAD to be resisted. One slip would be enough, so back into trusty Saga Mode; “pause ..2 .. 3 .. Think .. 2 .. 3 .. Slow down .. 2 .. 3 .. Don’t cut corners ..2. .. 3 etc.”

Terns exploded into the sea in Dalkey Sound as a VHF Small Craft Warning promised a tedious trip. Fisherman on the dark rocks, their tent like a black limpet, the sun a weak halo above the Island’s ruined church, goodwill tide through the Sound, now behind, deja vu.

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Ah Espresso!

I am not great at self restraint, but do try to hold back so treats don’t all come at once. Take the most important morning galley ritual, whether in port or at sea, the preparation of Espresso. Get the percolator sorted the night before but DON’T put the coffee in until morning. Prepare for sea and settle Team A-Jay en route. Resist the temptation for as long as possible – 15 minutes, 2 hours, whatever – then set to and await the rich, heady aroma announced by chortling steam and enjoy. Yes, I have become very attached to the little percolator and whilst he is no life saver, he is right up their with Binny the Binos.

Porridge with dried fruit is supposed to be a slow release food, but I am not a slow burn skipper, as thoughts of snackettes pestered barely an hour later.

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Maelstrom 15 minutes later

The day’s master plan was to get to the Avoca River by little Arklow before the worst of the weather moved in from the South, bringing strong winds and torrential rain. Close to the coast to get the view; the Dublin train chugged South, through Bray Head like a bright green caterpillar in and out of the ground. The sea was shallow, never more than 15 metres beneath the keel, sometimes 2.

Ahead the front crept North bringing predictable, tedious, familiar weather. A-Jay was alone, but for a couple of steamers ploughing North, as she had been since leaving Craobh. She had been the only visitor in huge Dun Laoghaire Marina.

0950 and the front arrived, rather like sitting waiting for a filling at the the dentist – nice magazine in the waiting room then that needle ….. From oily calm pewter sea, to boiling white horses off Wicklow Head with gusts of 26 knots fighting tide, all inside 20 minutes. Don’t believe those who say their yacht doesn’t slam – in such short steep seas as those, ALL yachts slam as A-Jay did, ever so politely. The sun laughed and played peek a boo through holes in the dirty grey sky, as the wind sang mournfully in the rigging of better days.

Dipping deep into the back of a wave, A-Jay would toss her head like a stallion, sweeping foamy sea water up and over the boat, leaving three inches of water sluicing through the leeward scuppers. At times like these the skipper has a simple mantra: “clip on and hang on!”

Three miles out from Arklow, carried on the dying remains of the ebb tide, the wind eased a little in the lee to a steady 19 knots  as the rain commenced its torrential solo, just as Ray the Radar went blank, all memory of where we were gone. Time for Binny theBinos, who quickly found the pier heads, behind which the skipper prepared for port in the dark brown sea of the local outfall.

A-Jay swept on in, remembering to avoid the groynes to port, on past the Fish Dock in which 3 ocean heavyweights sheltered, downstream to turn in the Narrows, to crash land alongside pushed awkwardly by the ebb tide. It was pouring, real Irish stuff – not cats and dogs, but elephants.

Mature stew sharpened with chorizo and beans pole axed the skipper as he pondered lessons learned. The most important were;

Don’t leave the skylight open when in seas that sweep over the boat.

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Pillow dries on engine block

Yanny is very good at drying bedding.

Electronics, particularly old and temperamental Electronics don’t like water. I fear Ray may only ever be half the man he once was, which will make the final legs a little more challenging.

By ajay290

In Irish Rain

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Lighthouse North of Carlingford

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Harry Three on Duty

Sitting here in the Irish rain, one has time to think and so I have been considering kit ….. take an as yet unmentioned crew member, Binny the binoculars. He isn’t special and is of unknown vintage; certainly he is more than 25 years old. But if I had to single out an essential item for a Saga sailor, this would be one of the top dogs. Able to sharpen tired old eyesight, spot a rock at dusk or assist in the identification of the correct landfall day or night, Binny is your man – or woman.

I recalled approaching Arklow, late at night with no autopilot after a rough lengthy, wet trip; Binny brought my scruffy sketch to life and identified the narrow entrance and the fierce cross current. Genuinely a life saver. Thank you Binny.

I have surprised myself by becoming passionate with Ray the Radar/GPS. Late at night, en route for Padstow, he drew an otherwise invisible fishing boat to my attention – just as well, for she was but a few cables hence. True he spluttered entering Dun Laoghaire in a downpour but that was because someone – ah hem! – had left his door open to the Irish Rain, a particularly penetrating species. Kitchen towel, ACF 50 and a few kind words sorted him. I’ll mention other team members another time ….

Stiff is good, everyone knows that and I like Dun Laoghaire mainly because there are many yachts, so plenty for this Saga anorak to see on an evening stroll. I like to seek out the cousins of A-Jay, yachts around 30 feet and step up onto the side deck. I then note the tip and will tell you that I cannot find a yacht so unperturbed by such an exercise as the Sadler 290.

This is just as well, because it means she is able to tolerate my heavy handed seamanship, which leads me neatly on to breakages of which there have been many. Looking back, its interesting to note the cause(s) of each breakage.

First leg – first breakage of stack pack. Cause – age/UV damage.

Tiller pin (for autopilot) twice – age/heavy use.

Shore power failure – poor cable quality.

Smiley the Windvane – inadequate joint (prototype).

Billy the Bilge pump – neglect.

Various legs – further stack pack failures – age and Skipper’s clumsiness.

Harry One (Autopilot) – Arklow leg – electronic failure but perhaps also hard labour demanded by the skipper.

Engine failure (fuel blockage) – fuel tank issue.

Engine failure (water pump) – c’est la vie.

Harry Two (autopilot failure) – electronic failure.

Mainsail failure – skipper, age, over exposure to UV and heavy weather.

Water tank leak – TBC.

Significantly there have been no structural issues and the cabin remains a cosy, warm and dry environment, which is just as well. Pity the WiFi here is rubbish – “depends on the tide” said the Marina lady helpfully.

The forecast is awful, even by this season’s standards, particularly if I opt to head direct to Milford Haven, a definite possibility. Team A-Jay may have to tarry here awhile. All part of growing up and being British☺

By ajay290

22nd August – Dublin Bound

Too True!!!

Too True!!!

Twice Team A-Jay has lain in Bangor, each time for repairs and replacements: last time a new water pump, this time a new mainsail. Still, the sun had largely banished the rain, England was collapsing again in the cricket and the excited sounds of children at the fairground carried across the water: typical summer events.

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Team A-Jay back in Bangor

The master plan was to head South across 3 tides for Dublin, to dock perhaps at Howth or Dun Laoghaire or somewhere in between.The logic, to take edvantage of the slack tidal conditions that seem to pertain for much of the tide in the bight off Carlingford, the lighter Southerlies and near neap tides whilst the weather window lasted. It would be good to escape from the clutches of the Irish Sea.

Meanwhile Barry had perked up a little, the bubble and squeak was delicious and the new mainsail rose and fell like a dream, all reefing lines properly refitted. Harry Three needed a compass reset and hopefully would then be a contented member of the team.

The Bangor seagulls have a clever modus operandi when it comes to handling mussels, a gull delicacy. Hover 10 metres above pontoon, drop mussel, land and stamp on mussel, peck, repeat …. again and again. The success rate sseemed variable but I never saw a skinny Bangor Gull.

Next morning temporary sunshine, smooth sea with the promise of thundery showers and Force 5-7 later. Through Donaghee Sound South of Copeland Island across Team A-Jay’s Northbound track, espresso to clear sloth from the brain, a well stocked nosebag to hand a hot meal for later. It felt appropriate to be reading- or battling – James Joyce’s Ulysses as we headed for Dublin.

Again heavy bovine air fell off the headland, enveloping Team A-Jay, so rich and full it seemed to hang, heavy like udders. Weak sun poked a finger through the cloud and the IOM beckoned a perfect sail West. A 2 mile line of caravans, black eyes seawards mocked from the shore whilst somewhere up ahead the front lurked.

Inside Skulmartin outside Burial Rock and past the Paddys, deadly zigzag, the shore stolen by rain. Strangford Buoy and little Ardglass, torrential rain, millpond sea, calm before the storm. The Mourne Mountains deep in the wet embrace of bloated grey rain cloud dark beneath and the busy mouth of Carlingford Lough. On on.

Barry the Barometer was still not panicking so thoughts turned to supper as dusk fell, though not before the skipper had tucked a reef in the mainsail.

There are benefits to being solo, I mused over hot pie: no one to nick your glasses, no pills to mix up, no one to spot your gaffs or see you enter the cabin and forget why, no one to hear your curses or wake when you pee at 3. Still it would be nice to have someone to share the skipper’s bubble and squeak, which would sink a gannet.

Gold dots along the coastline through the black night like ethereal stitching between Heaven and Earth. Rockabill Light the target up ahead, pass between the light and the Skerries, weather changing as A-Jay continued to slip South on a goodwill tide. Head torch on red, log and chart to update, head torch ditty to mind

Close East of Lambay Island lying like a somnolent monster at midnight, as the rain beat in earnest and Barry skulked in the dark above the chart table, down 4 milibars in 4 hours and falling. Off Ben of Howth A-Jay surfed on little white horses, white foam hissing in the darkness, wind in the North pushing towards Dublin ahead somewhere amongst the confusion of lights. Being a bear with simple brain the skipper had selected just 2 and there they were, amongst a host of unknowns. Harry Three’s pretty blue nightface remained resolute in direction, now a fully fledged member of the team.

Fighting a fierce Cross current Team A-Jay stopped ouride Dun Laoghaire Marina entrance for the second time rolling heavily in pouring rain as the skipper cussed and cursed the mainsail to order. 0245, alongside, 18 hours and 103 nautical miles out. Hot chocolate with a dram,  clothing steaming on the engine block.

Head torch ditty:

We’ve had our fair share of troubles

As we battled North last June

Maybe we’ll be friends one day

Wicked Irish Sea and me

From Milford Haven to Arklow

Harry Two died in big seas

Maybe we’ll be friends one day

Wicked Irish Sea and me

 

Engine failure off Calf of Man

To little Ardglass we fled

Maybe we’ll be friends one day

Wicked Irish Sea and me

Fairwell to the Mull of Kintyre

Hello to strong wind and waves

Maybe we’ll be friends from today

Wicked Irish Sea and me

To Dublin’s Fair city in rain

A peace we seem to have made

Maybe we are friends from today

Wicked Irish Sea and me.”

 

 

 

 

By ajay290

18th August Goodbye Scotland

Saga Mode, no rush, all preparations made, lists checked off … can’t have forgotten anything surely? Time in Craobh Bay to welcome Harry Three to the team … a little fine tuning required later no doubt. Trickling along, one reef in the main, a sensible solo pre-nightfall precaution.  The wind barrelled playfully up the Loch between Luing and Scarba and up from Jura at 18-20 knots, engine on tick over, sails and tide helping, 5 knots over the ground.

Soon the sun reluctantly began to set over the chilly, choppy Sound, up ahead the Paps of Jura clear to starboard not yet abed. By 2035 the sun finally sank behind the soft curves of the Island, the scene slipping from cheerful day to sinister dusk, the previously jolly Paps now more like the dark heights of Mordor.

Dark in the Sound, rocks around, diamond studded canopy above, wind elsewhere for now, lights to identify one by one from the planning list, head torch aglow, plots to make, hot drinks, skipper’s stew at two; gently through the night.

From 0400, a juvenile dawn began to chase the stars away and by breakfast Team A-Jay waved goodbye to the Mull of Kintyre heel of Scotland, and crabbed across the North Channel shipping lane, leeway 28° Northwards, just one ship for company.

“There is a place I’d rather not be

That is, of course, the Irish Sea

It always turns to fight hard with me

Makes me detest this Irish Sea”.

Yup every word is true. As Team A-Jay swung South, the Irish Sea embraced us with 25 knots on the nose, playing its mocking tune in the rigging, fighting with the sweeping tide and piling up irritable, steep seas.

“I’ll stop you, just you see”, it seemed to say, then put its hand in its pocket to pull out Irish rain, heavy, blinding. No-one does rain like the Irish, I’ll give them that; ought to be a national treasure with its own museum.

The North Irish coast was so close, Glenarm a lovely little refuge, just a few tempting miles South, but Bangor it would be, as the wind gusted to a nasty 30 knots, like a fist in the face. I had put a precautionary second reef in awhile back and, together with a push from Yanny, reasonable progress was possible by slaloming either side of the rhumb line, choosing an angle each side of the line, to make best speed across the steep, ugly little seas.

Things eased as Team A-Jay crossed Belfast Lough and tied up in Bangor Marina, 110 nautical miles and 21 hours out. To think you could do such a distance in 2 hours in a car – didn’t bear thinking about!!

There are always positives, no matter how horrible the situation; for me, one was realising yet again what a good sea boat A-Jay is. She had been completely unperturbed by anything that had been thrown at her, unlike her skipper. There is no doubt that some of that is due to her healthy ballast ratio – ‘nowt so good as a nice lump of lead slung far below I always say. I like to think that her skipper was beginning to get the hang of it too.

Thoughts on the North Scottish part of this journey?

Subarus are not extinct, unlike in other parts of the UK …..

You need sunshine to see, never mind enjoy the Western Isles …..

Despite the weather there are 2 VERY special places I would put in my pocket to take away if I could … (avid readers will know☺) ….

Expect not to pick up Radio 5 Live, or much else in many places …

The people are wonderful; Barry 2 Boats, Willy the Rig, Biker John, and the travellers you meet … Lief, Iwona, Marek and all …. I salute and thank you ..

Expect a good chat and a more laid back approach ….

Don’t expect a good glass of hair restorer unless you like what is contained in those cl. 175 bottles …

Don’t believe all you read about midges … they only like some people ..

Will I go back? Most definitely if only to actually see it.

The mainsail had received terminal damage so had to be changed, an operation that required 2 hours next day, in the strong wind, most of that controlling 275 square feet of flailing Dacron, with much muttering and cussing from the skipper. That’s a big sail for a small boat.

Chart on the table, wind singing in the rigging, boat tugging at at her warps, where to next? Dublin for sure with luck. But afore we go there are things to do…..

 

By ajay290

In Search of Harry Part Two

The sun contains 99.8% of the entire mass of the solar system, according to Wikipedia – yup, its a ‘biggie’. So big, it is incredible that it has barely been seen during the 4 months of this voyage. Today was different – I saw it all afternoon!

This prompted a modest celebratory hike, during which I probably saw more of the Firth of Lorn and the islands in an hour than on the trek North. Tea and a zzz in the cockpit? Yup☺

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Craobh 1

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Craobh 2

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Craobh 3

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Craobh 4

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Craobh 5

Lovely though this place is, it is not the main reason Team A-Jay is holed up in Craobh….

Robert from Boat Electrics and Electronics was an ex-submariner, so probably a bottle short of a six pack, but he was a great bloke and disappeared inside the innards of A-Jay before you could say “Dive!! Dive!! Dive”.

Harry the Third went in with a struggle and is no doubt vastly more intelligent than the skipper – I certainly shan’t challenge his fertile electronic brain, but I am sure Team A-Jay will push him physically. Let’s hope he is up to the Irish Sea in a bad mood, particularly as the gyro compass is perhaps not ideally located.

Robert dragged Ray the Radar into the 20th century with a software upgrade too, so I hope he doesn’t show off and surprise me 😀

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Harry Three

Robert was the first Serviceman I had ever met who didn’t like curry, though it might just have been the aroma of the skipper’s 3 day old curry which, I proudly confess, would have given a killer whale indigestion. Ancient Mariner next door asked if I had burned my lunch!!!

I covered myself in shame the previous evening, when same Ancient Mariner, who clearly was not a fan of Blur, asked me to turn down the stereo. This was odd as he hadn’t heard my loud “good afternoon” earlier and it was on low volume, but I had forgotten there are speakers on the poop deck.

One comes across ‘Elf & Safety’ in many forms whilst sailing, such as warning notices in the boat. A-Jay isn’t too bad, having just one that sensibly advises me to ” …. avoid asphyxiation ” which I generally manage to do. American boats have them all over the place – reminders such as “Don’t forget to pump out your toilet” or “Remember to be nice to the First Mate”, helpful I suppose when one is of a certain age and has mislaid the check list. An ‘elf & Safety notice in an Oban chippie caught my eye:

” More thin people than fat people get kidnapped. Stay safe – eat chips!”

The Master Plan is to try and make Bangor, the Northern Irish version, in one hop of about 20 hours, across my least favorite Sea. The weather is due to blow up so Glenarm would do if things get out of hand. Plans are after all no more than intentions, to be modified to suit.

Saga Mode dictates a pre-departure list be prepared, which set me thinking about the kit failures this trip which now, I am sure, includes a leaking water tank. Anyway a most important pre-departure task is the creation of a skipper’s stew ….. so toot toot!!!

By ajay290

In Search of Harry Three Part 1

Something nasty was annoying me … I wanted to dig deep into the darkness to find it and hurl it far away, but that would have meant yet another new phone  …. fresh raspberries with pineapple and tea, not a dream .. sharp bows cutting the pre dawn gloom in Oban Bay … Col ‘Polish’ waving farewell from the pontoon .. on towards the safe, welcoming glow of the green channel markers … 2 cables off Sgeirean Deiha – I would never get these Scottish names, though the magic of the place was growing; farewell Kerrera Sound.

Hand on tiller drinking Espresso; looking pretty damn cool in a new, red Musto BR2 space suit, last years stock, a little large, more Capt Mainwaring than Richard Gere I thought, now that Mrs Polish was not there to tell me otherwise. Grasping headland close, mastheads thrusted from Clachan Sound, marmalade and cheese rolls in the cold early grey dawn.

Mull hunched large across Firth of Lorn, Eilean Musdile and Lady’s Rock lights the Sound to guide, deadly Gulf of Corryvreckan slumbered a few leagues South at the top of the tide.

Paths Cross

Paths Cross

Pylons guarded the gate to Cuan Sound, 9.3 knots beneath the lines, skidded round Rhuba Breac, slicing through eddies and whorls, out at 8 knots, twice veteran of the awesome Sound. We had truly crossed our outward track, a wave to North bound ghost of Team A-Jay long gone.

In Craobh

In Craobh

“Pontoon B, Berth 30”, VHF 80 informed me and soon Team A-Jay stopped neatly alongside, 3 hours and 18 miles out. The sun would lose the war against the cloud’s embrace, but looked set to win a skirmish or two that day.  All was good.

Craobh Yacht Haven Entrance

Craobh Yacht Haven Entrance

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!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

WOW!!!! A Dragonfly 32 Touring!!!!! Boy oh boy oh boy!!!! Poooop poop!!

By ajay290

Oban Marina, Kerrera

DOUBLE CLICK PICTURES FOR A CLOSER LOOK

I found Fred the Norwegian’s letter in the cockpit next morning – he’d wanted to say goodbye, but had to catch the tide South, to be in Spain by October. It will be nice to see him again.

On Kerrera Island

On Kerrera Island

Kerrera, across the bay from Oban, a trek through ‘animal farm’, good morning to the turkey, chickens, rabbits, peacock, the farm cat and of course, the Border Collies.

The Fender Game

The Fender Game

“Game! Game! Game! Gi’us a GAME!!!!!!” shouted the dogs, producing a large orange fender, which the skipper dutifully threw … again, and again and again and….. whilst the farm cat looked on with patient derision.

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Bored Farm Cat

Then on into a field, good morning to the Highland Longhorn, goats and sheep; views North to Lismore, NW up the Sound of Mull through which Team A-Jay had sailed on 27th June.

Kerrera Highland Longhorn

Kerrera Highland Longhorn

The ground squelchy, paths deeply awash, lava rock, lush greens contrasting with the ever grey canopy above, the wind stirring enough to tempt a few sails out to sea. A yacht eased into the bay and dropped anchor, lying still off the sheltered rocky beach.

Kerrera Oyster Beds

Kerrera Oyster Beds

Looking NW from Kerrera

Looking NW from Kerrera

Kerrera towards Sound of Mull

Kerrera towards Sound of Mull

‘Mrs Polish’, as tiny as a wren, only had one volume – LOUD!!! – so we shared our conversation with the rest of the pontoon. They too were confined to barracks awaiting spares; they are very special people. Easy to ignore as they look even smaller and less significant than the skipper, but don’t be deceived.

This little old couple, all smiles and warm hearts, with their small red boat and tiny resources, sailed from Poland calling at Sweden, Faroes, Iceland and then back via Shetland and the Orkneys!! I can only assume that they had wanted to follow Team A-Jay out of curiosity.

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Iwona and Marek Tarczynsky

These gracious, modest people responded to a gift of an old Channel Pilot and chart of the Channel with a shouted invitation to dinner aboard their tiny red boat. Google Translate helped a bit though I began to get some of Mrs Polish’s shouted ‘Pol-english’ by the end of a lovely evening.  Spotting a holstered weapon on the bulkhead, it was no surprise to learn Marek was a Colonel with 35 years service in the Polish Army.

Iwona’s written thank you message read;

Dear John, you be similar to American actor Richard Gere. We admired your mastery sailing during storm to Oban. Thank you for pilotage our yacht Cerberyna-Mila 3 in this storm.”

It doesn’t look like a new autopilot system can be fitted for another 5 or 6 days, very frustrating but an opportunity to explore, which of course is the signal for Barry the Barometer to sulk…

Toot toot

 

By ajay290