Embarrassing Moments (A Late Entry)!! A Bit Long!!



Just found this entry I made here about a year or so ago.

At the time it was called Show me the way Home.

So if you've read it Bye Bye !!

Since then I've found the spell checker and also learned to copy and paste.

Just thought it fitted Nicks contribution.

It was late in the year and me and th-wife had set off from Plymouth for a three day cruise.We decided to go west cos the wind was from the east and it would'nt be as bumpy. To cut a long story short and try to get to the point of the story. The wind stay'd in the east we kept going west and when we ran out of land ( at Lands End ) did a right to keep on the lea shore and finished up in Stourport. (just short of Birmingham). We decided this would be a good place to leave the boat for the winter, and it now being only about 130 miles from home in Lancashire we could use it all winter. Especialy cos there was a lovely friendly club house at the marina. About this point(and some mounths later) in the proceadings. Th-wife decides to go all menopausal on me, so I spent most of the winter on the boat to keep out of the way of the dragon. I got to know many of the river and banana (narrow boat) boaties quite well. One day early spring I was asked if I would help bring a boat back from the Isle of White for the son of one of the banana boaters.

The crew was selected on the basis of, who could skip work for a few day's, with banana boat man as captain cos it was his sons boat and anyway I think he'd once been on a ferry. WE plotted course on my boats sat-nav in Stourport. Tied my dinghy on the roof of an ancient merc. (Cos it made a good roof rack) and at four in the morning, five of us squeezed into it for the trip to the Isle of White. It broke down countless times but finaly we ends up a few miles up rive from Cowes. THE BOAT. 56ft, 54 tons ex admiralty liberty boat,previously owned and lived on by a drug adict. Theres an Aga cooker chuffing away with no chimney cos drug adict has flogged it, the galley was made out of orange boxes whilst drug adict was having a bad trip! the toilet in the corner of the er---saloon was behind a curtain, held up with a washing line. The wheel house is about three feet square and consists of a wheel, gear leaver and a compass, with one screw holding it down. (so you can turn it any way round you fancy). At this time the captain takes command and slowly takes on the roll of captain Blye. Fuel is discussed and we're going to pick some up down river, before setting off for Salcolme some 80-90- miles away (this is the first time this boat has moved since the navy had it). Captain sets off a bit slowly Cos the back end's still tied up and the pontoon's comming with us. It was at this point that I started to have slight doubts about this trip!! Off we go down river, the fuel station disapearing a stern. Out into the Solent and the big stew pot on the Aga takes a tumble cos nobody on the boat has been on anything rougher than the Leeds to Liverpool canal. I've been demoted to cabin boy cos I made noises about compasses and fuel and lights and things for a fifteen hour night crossing to Salcolmbe. Anyway happily chugging down the Solent at about eight knots it's noticed that the prop shaft is wearing the stern away and water is comming in, so speed is reduced to six knots, which some what improves the situation. Captain decides to head for Poole and I get instant promotion to pilot cos I've been before and anyway I've got the charts. In poole I head for the fuel barge. Cant remember what the tank held, but we put in about twenty gallons more than full!!. So god knows how we'de have got to Salcolmbe!!! Captain takes the helm again and trys to remove the rails on an eight ton bouy. Fifty six tons meeting eight tons is quite something!! Off to the chip shop in pool for supper. Captain decides we'll set off for poole around mid night. I point out that I've never been out of Poole at night and with all the lights from cars and street lights it's hard to find the way and in any case this boat wont stop in less than two hundred yards. So lets go now whilst we can still see. Needless to say I'm back in cabin boy mode. Off captain goes totaly ignoring the fair way and heads through the middle of the moorings. Somebody rushes to the bow and franticly waves left and right as the moored craft loom into sight from the pitch black night.We did a circular tour of Poole harbour about three times before comming across the Cherbourg ferry, so captain decides to follow it out of the harbour We've got two micky mouse hand held GPS's neither of which we could get a position out of. Captain did'nt believe in all that rubbish anyway and said " You can go anywhere off a compass" The fact that this one spent most of the time rolling about on the floor and the crew put it back on it's stand in various positions, had little significance.

We plotted a course and captain went to bed. Son's wife is histerical cos she's only been on a canal boat before and it's pitch black, miles out at sea and rolling about a bit. Anyway with captain fast asleep I try to get a bit of order and make this tub a bit more sea worthy. The piece of string holding the steel cable to the rudder got fixed And I tried many times to get the captains son who was the mechanic (and had the tools) to mend the compass. But he had no interest in the compass.

Some time in the middle of the night we got one of the GPS's working and changed course a couple of times till I could see the headland Off Salcolmbe in the early morning gloom. Captain wakes up and announces "there you are. You can go anywhere off a compass". By this time I've been up most of the night. the choice for sleeping was in the fore cabin with the sons wife and the Aga cooker filling the place with smoke and not much heat or the aft cabin filled with rubbish and spare parts and freezing cold. The captain slept in the engine room which was the cleanest and warmest place on the boat. I started grumbling about breakfast and a cup of tea would be nice, About an hour later it arrived, Raw sausage butties and luke warm tea. Salcolme. Hunt round for a stove to replace the Aga. One of the crew comes back with a second hand primos. then off to the yatch club for shower and food.

Three am. and captain's ready for off. Points UP river and declares " there's the lights it's easy" I go opposite way over the bar and out to sea. Captain takes over cos I'm grumbling again cos all the smoke from the Aga is blowing into the wheel house and I cant see the channel and cant breath either. We leave him in there for a couple of hours to stew. Meanwill the crews got the primos in the saloon. and are trying to light it with the petrol for my out board. Flames five foot high and rolling about the floor.

We're heading for Falmouth, 260deg (If my memmory serves me) With the Edistone lighthouse half way across. Son and wife have had enough of miles out at sea so captain takes the scenic route around the coast. this is ok but at five-six knot's it doubles the journey time. In the mean time back at the ranch. The sea's built up to a good force six/seven and the coast is disapearing in the rain. The captain is telling the crew to steer 260deg. This might have been ok from Salcolmbe but we're now somewhere off loe!! No way can I tell him he's wrong and the crew dont know any better. We're now heading for the rocks between Fowey and Falmouth with a big following sea.

When they came into view. Captain and his now first mate ( Cos he dosent know any better so dos'nt argue) decides that you've got to ease the boat round slowly, (cos they saw it in a film somwhere) and anyway they dont like the look of the big folowing sea. An hour later. the boats still heading for the rocks and the captains still going to ease it round. Things are now getting a bit serious. Captain's wedged in the three foot square wheel house. The rest of the crew are petrifide in the saloon which dos'nt have a door but a ladder and hatch like a submarine.I've had enough, so telling the crew "it's going to bounce a bit I'm through the hatch dodge the waves coming over the deck and get into the wheel house with the captain. the compass is on the floor but there is'nt room to bend down and pick it up. I can see the day marker which is a big red and white tower off Fowey so I know where I'm heading for. Captain's face is now ash white but at least some of the arragance has gone. After screaming a bit I get him to put the wheel hard over and give the engine some stick. The boat comes round fine apart from upsetting the crew down in the hold and the chiefe mechanic complaining about the prop shaft. About hundred yards off Fowey the hand held VHF comes into range and Fowey radio asks if we are having trouble getting into harbour. "No" says the captain "we've just been fishing", "Well will you let us know when you're leaving" came the reply. I booked my self into the King of Persia for the night. and caught the train the next morning. The boat did eventualy arrive at Stourport after some arguments with another buoy, a rock, and some mud. And I think Lands End is a bit shorter than it used to be.

The End.

This story is purely ficticious and the cast bare no resemblence to any person living or dead.


Just because its long, don't think you're getting into the competition for the bottle. Its posted to the wrong thread!



Ye but the thread these days gets down the screen so fast that it gets mist. Anyway your a foriner fro Scoyland so P--- off.

What happend to the maintinance team at Hadrians wall then!! You want rapeing and piladging

or words to that efect.

Hope yr Turbo's go ftttttt and YR gear boxs go FFFFFF

Y Scotish Sorry it's---------------------------

ratialistic !!!

Anyway this is my thread not yours so take yer boat and stick it up yer bum.

All meant in the best possible tast of course!!