Patients Please


Well-known member
18 Sep 2003
Dorset/ Hampshire. south coast
Why does it happen to me.

Being only human and a female variation too, I sometimes think that it may be the female bit that enhances the things that happen to me.

It could be the almost blond bit that aggravates it too.
Well to get on with the point, I am crap at long bits of writing unless I have a week to write it again and again, so your getting extracts.

On a Large Flybridge in some marina in Wales.
Ooo just remembered another thing from that trip too, so will start there,

I took a hire car up to said marina and arrived about 10.30 at night, expecting to get on the boat for the night so we could get an early start back the next day, my crew was coming up by train and would be arriving about 11.30. Plan A
Now we have a saying “ If it all goes according to plan A” You will see what this means as I go on.

First hitch, I can see the boat but can’t get to it, pontoon access gate need a key, Off I go to find someone with a key, I can’t find anyone, anywhere and the guy I asked walking by, though I was a mad person., so I look up the marina in the almanac and phone them, ring ring…….ring ring…..etc …… no reply…………., so I phone the harbour authority, he can’t help and did I know whole marina closes at 9.oopm, Ok Plan B

My crew turns up, Ok, so I have crew, now we need sleep, Car may be an option, no way to small, crew is a tall guy!!! So off we go to find beds, we book into a travel something or other, sleep time .

On boat for 8,00am after going to tesco to grab supplies and breakfast, need my breakfast I do even if it is pots of fruit and bread rolls.
Now it should have been a quick run though boat to check thing as she was coming back for some warranty work. Guys who look after the boat for the owners are on board, Plan C……………!!

She had been run up the day before with no problems.!!!!!! well not really a problem the port engine had needed the link switch to start. They said,

So we stow are gear and they go to start her. Starboard starts fine, then hear Port start, ………. Then port stops………..port starts…………………port stops.

I am not running 350 odd miles on one engine so go to see what’s wrong.

The port engine will start and run as long as you hold the link switch down. as soon as you take your finger off, it’s a rocking switch, it stops. OK Plan D

I suspect dead, totally dead batteries!!

I phone my friendly helpful engineer friend, yup , he confirms what I thought, So new batteries are needed, So A FEW PHONE CALLS LATER, I have possible found some, but they can’t get hold of owner, and they are not available until 3 days time,
Back on phone now this is 5th time I have phone my friendly engineer, he is now answering the phone the “Julie help line”.
A plan is hatched; we will take 2 batteries from the bank of good 4 and use them to replace the 2 dead start batteries, so out come my limited tool kit, wonderful things adjustable spanners.
My now long suffering Crew disconnects 2 good batteries, hands me the spanner and I disconnect the dead ones. I try to lift the dead ones out, bugger they are heavy, Not quite sure to this day How I did it but managed, I was getting a bit fed up with this boat now!!!!
We swapped them over , I was on the Julie help line again to check something, when my crew managed to touch bits with the spanner that he should not have, and I screamed at the sparks flying everywhere right down the phone., My very very nice engineer friend I think may still be a bit deaf in that ear. …………….

Sorted, Plan E, started her and can run her but with minimum electric, Nav only and minimum lights at night.
Thank goodness I carry torches with me.
So off the berth, easy starboard reverse turn and potter out to wait for lock. Just running with helm over and one engine.
Get to lock and start maneuvering her in, put port ahead, in , out, then starboard, in out, she does a positive turn to port. Is helm over, NO!!!!.

Try again, port only goes into gear when she seems to want to, had to put her, in, and out a few times to get it engaged, once engaged no problems.

So ok made it interesting close quarter but ok, so off we head out the lock,
It’s a bit lumpy and we here 2 or 3 thuds down below as we get tossed about a bit, So crew goes to see, comes back up and says 2 of the 3 cabin doors have fallen off, So that will be on the warranty list then, so he put them on the floor in one of the cabins.

And he nicked the cabin with the door that night, lol.

That is the most interesting bits of that trip, did not realise I had waffled so much. Hope you enjoyed it.


Well-known member
18 Sep 2003
Dorset/ Hampshire. south coast

Now I will not say what make of boat but it was about 50 something ft flybridge.

Bonuses, naa,. Not heard of much in the boating world.

I shall continue, well the journey did so I will.
So After the door were secured on the floor, we continued,
It was quite a nice day at that point , but then we got further out into Bristol channel and the hills got bigger with a few deep valleys too [ Sea got up] , We retired to the lower helm with the wipers going. So imagen it was up the hill OOO see some land down the hill , now just water, then it was up the hill OOOOO aaahhh No land , down the hill, now just water. This went on for an hour or so.
Then it started to calm down and the sun came out , so we went back up on the Flybridge, I let crew take the helm for a while, now he is a lovely guy , was a coastal skipper I taught who needed miles for his YM. But , well its not a bad thing , he keeps tidying up and wiping down things, when we got back he had wiped out every cupboard and work top in the saloon, the owner had just emptied everything out with no cleaning involved at all. So BONUS, He also did not eat bread and only had 2 cups of coffee a day, now that’s great, I have no problems with that at all, he would have hot water when I brewed up, but he tried me on a cup of hot water only, now I am happy to try anything once, even twice has been known , but hot water that has been kept hot in a flask for a few hours does not taste good.
Back to boaty bit.
So heading towards Land end now, more miles covered than have left to cover, so a Happy bunny, when vis starts to drop, then drop some more so we are slowing down, and vis drops even more, now looks like we can only see a couple of feet off the bow, I swing a bit further off shore to see if it clears, Plan F, no it does not, so we continue on, slowly, Its Foggy for about 15 miles then vis improves and We see land end, So I wave at it as we pass it.
We make Falmouth just as it is getting dark, we trundle up the river for fuel as she has a dirty bum and is using a bit more than expected. Avoid that nasty mud lump just by the fuel berth and tie up, start to fuel, chatting away to guy as I always do and one side filled with amount required, other side seems to be taking ages, check it, mmmm pump not pumping, try other pump, no its not either, OH dear we drank him dry and I still need a couple hundred to be safe on one side. Think this is plan G now,

So tomorrow we will pop into Dartmouth, love that place got the most beautiful entrance. And we can get fuel we need.
So off the fuel berth, avoiding the mud lump again and pop down to the marina in the town,
The BIG black cloud that had been following us for a little while along the coast chooses now to let us, well me feel its present, Driving rain, almost hail, directly into your face is not fun, even if you are only going at 6 knots. My crew had disappeared, did not reappears until just before we berthed up.

Fish and chips for supper and did you know that at that time Woolworth’s in Falmouth sold tea and coffee, Oh I will miss the wonder of woollys.

Sleep, snore, well after I have gone round turning lights off as fast as my crew is turning them on, and killed the batteries over night, with instructions that if we needed the loo, use torch on stairs out side cabins to turn on master for domestic and loo/water then turn all off when done, This boat was not going to have a girly I don’t want to go in the morning with me!!!!.

So next morning about 8 ish we left Falmouth, out the entrance and turned left along the coast,
On the way in to Falmouth the day before we had been monitoring 16 and heard a war ship was playing with a submarine in the area we were heading for , I was commenting to crew it would have been fun to see one out here, when we spy A grey militarily type vessel ahead, I get the binoculars, mmmm I think; sure she has something in her rigging, as we get closers she turns head on to us, mmmmm run , run very fast, she is actively mine sweeping.

So we turn hard away and run a few miles further off shore. We fuel up at Dartmouth, with the tide running hard, and guess who forgot about the port being temperamental when we left, well I was distracted for a while as the fuel barge had a puppy on it, and we play happily for half an hour while my crew did all the work and we persuaded the guy to refill our thermoses. Meant we had a little shiny blue bit of their newly painted barge paint on the rubbing strip, The rubbing strip was needing replaced as half of it was falling out, another warranty issue. By the time we left Dartmouth the blue was gone. Thanks crew.
The rest of the trip was fairly ordinary, we got back to bases about 5.30 ish I think.

So that’s the rest of that trip told, hope you enjoyed it.


New member
7 Jun 2007
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Re: PART 2

Nice story, Julie. Makes me keen to get some sea time in. I took a couple of friends out on my boat a few years ago and my friend's girlfriend never stopped spring cleaning the boat.
I couldn't find anything but the boat was never cleaner before or since. Tidy crew are a real bonus.


New member
13 Apr 2005
Visit site
Re: PART 2

"So that’s the rest of that trip told, hope you enjoyed it. "

Great read Julie - just what the forum needs just now /forums/images/graemlins/wink.gif