Wednesday, 8 June 2011

Maiden voyage approaches.... fast!

Work on fitting the extras is now almost complete and within days we'll be able to take Breeze for her maiden voyage... a hop to Cowes. Our fears that the aft lockers would prove to be too small were ill founded - they swallow a surprisingly large volume of kit. All the electronic gizmos are installed - radar, AIS, autopilot, chartplotter, DSC - and the stack of instruction manuals is going to provide bedside reading for months!

Chloe's design skills have been harnessed to provide some stylish graphics for the stern and bows so all we need now is a puff of wind and a fair tide to send us into the Solent. After that; The Channel Islands, North Brittany, Atlantic France and Spain beckon. Beats gardening I can tell you!

Wednesday, 25 May 2011

I name this ship 'Breeze'.

Well, after an enormous amount of discussion we have alighted on a name. The new boat is to be called 'Breeze'. Not the most imaginative name, we accept, but we always had in mind use on the radio and what effect the name might have on a future owner. We rather liked 'Premier Crew' - wine buffs among you will appreciate that, but that got marked down for it's radio friendliness - or lack of it. 'Rum Line' (one for the navigators) was top of the charts for a while but we could see a lifetime of mis-spellings.

So Breeze it is.

Now what do we do about this blog?

Saturday, 21 May 2011

Pink Ribbon Walk

Jo and Nicola at the end of the Pink Ribbon Blenheim Walk. 10 miles around Oxfordshire countryside starting and ending at Blenheim Palace. After months and months of training in all weathers, including snow, they did the course in just over 3 hours...that was an hour faster than predicted.

Jo raised £360 for the charity, twice the target figure. She says a big thank you to all her generous sponsors - not only for your cash but also for your support.

Friday, 13 May 2011

Rum Line


Well, we've done it. After eighteen months of indecision and futile searching we have, at last, found a boat we like. Today we went on a sea trial - the last hurdle before actually finally committing. We loved it. The contract is signed, the extras are being fitted, she'll be ours in three weeks.

The sea trial was interesting. Steady winds of around 15 knots with gusts up to 25 knots. I had anticipated a lively trial with the boat being a bit of a handful in the gusts. There was no reef in either main of gib and she was quite happy. She felt solid, reacted with dignity to the gusts and gently rounded up if the gusts were sustained. A very well behaved German lady.

I suspect she'll be a bit sluggish in light airs and we may need to consider a downwind sail for those times when the wind doth not blow.

She is quite big, so there's plenty of room for extras. We are having radar and autopilot fitted. The Jacuzzi is going in next week, the helicopter pad the week after followed by the nine-hold golf course the week after that. Oh, OK I exaggerate but there is a lot of space although locker space on deck is a bit tight. Not sure yet quite how we are going to accommodate our dinghy.

Now the difficult bit - we need a name.

We quite liked JoT - "S/Y JoT", or should that be "YoT JoT"? Anyway, the observant among you will recognise the name is based on Jo and Trevor. A friend has pointed out that it could deter the next buyer - so JoT bit the dust. Current favourite is "Rum Line" - nautical pun for the navigators among you. If we had any teetotal friends they'd probably point out it would deter the entire Methodist fleet when we come to sell - but as we know no tee totalers that's not going to be a problem.


Saturday, 30 April 2011

New Boat

You would not believe how difficult it is proving to spend money! We have travelled to Fleetwood, just north of Blackpool, to view a 41 foot cat. 'Has potential' as the brokerage ads put it. 'Needs a load of bloody work' I say.

We then went off to the Algarve to look at two hot contenders. These were relatively new boats - a year or so old. Boat 1, despite being so young, had the air of neglect about it. The 3-month old milk in the fridge didn't help. Boat 2, same model and same age, was tidier but somehow had the 'smell' of shoddy. The whole galley was coming away from the bulkhead - and this in a boat that's barely left the factory. Either the galley had moved (nasty) or was never installed correctly in the first place (worrying). So, we said a polite 'no thanks' to both and enjoyed the sun as a consolation prize.

Last Thursday we went to the Hamble to see a monohull (yes, I know - traitors and all that) and although this was a solid boat built using traditional skills and materials it looked kinda dated. Well, it was 20 years old so it had every right to look a bit sedate but Mrs. T. wants a 'shiny boat'.

We now have two more boats in our sights. A brand new 36 footer (she certainly qualifies as shiny) but she may also be a bit Ikea! Also there's a 10 year old Moody - but bigger than we have been considering but potentially interesting.

Our quest for a cat has been thwarted. They either leave a lot to be desired on build quality or if you opt for older and better build quality they look dated. Of course the answer is to have one built to spec. Discovery do a nice 50-footer, bit it would empty our pockets and some!

Time is running out. The season is now underway and at this rate we'll get a boat just in time to haul her out of the water for the winter.

Maybe we should explore golf, or bowls, or ping pong. Not sure Pringle jumpers are me, don't feel quite ready to don white shirt and trousers and sup cups of tea with Derby and Joan and ping pong is far too fast.

OK, pass Yachting Monthly and let's have another look through the ads. There must be a boat somewhere with our name on it.

Saturday, 18 December 2010

Snow, Glorious Snow!

Not a lot to say that the pictures don't.

This is the 'main road' through the village. We spotted a deer attempting to get through but cars gave up long ago. Postie did make it earlier on but said we were his last drop. The paper'boy' braved the conditions to deliver today's news but we are now expecting to be cut off for a few days. Pass the wine.

Merry Christmas.

Tuesday, 7 December 2010

Dolphins galore

In July this year I helped friend Steve Sweet take his 29 foot sail boat from St. Malo to Bordeaux. Great trip, despite the two days of fog, but the highlight was being entertained by a pod of dolphins which followed us for fifteen minutes. Their skill, ability, playfulness and amazing agility had us captivated.

The Crew

The Crew
On board at Lymington