h.m.s. absurdity’s maiden voyage: day two

right. we made it out into the Solent.

here’s a peek:

oh sure, there was laughing, mainly because we thought the worst was over.

we had slept cold, and slept wet.

it was around 6pm when we stopped filming.

Mel rang to let us know she had made beef stew and was lighting a fire – that warmed us both up.

and then we hit slack water –

with wind still on the nose.

meaning we were rocked back-and-forth,

so much, that we had to go over our ‘man overboard’ list.

‘you have less than 5 minutes to radio the coast guard’ Nick said, ‘any more than that and that’s it.’

and then – if that wasn’t enough,

slack water turned to tide.

a tide against us.

the wind against us.

only enough petrol left in the small outboard to get us in the harbor.

Nick phoned Mel and I heard him say ‘somewhere around 5am’.

this was at 8.30pm.

there would be no warm stew.

there would be no warm fire.

there would be no warm at all.

a funny thing happens when you realize that you’re in a position where nothing can be done.

I mean, if this was a car, you turn around, find a motel.

if you’re walking, you break out the credit card and find an ATM and flag down a cab.

on a plane? you order another drink.

in any other situation, there are options.

we had none.

nor could we ‘sit it out’, as we would have to fight the tide for at least 6 hours until the wind was supposed to change.

defeat doesn’t do it justice.

fear? sure. but that wasn’t it either.

shattered. I supposed that’s what I’m after – shattered.

6 more hours,

our boots were wet

you’ve seen inside the cabin.

the food, if not soaked, was cold.

and to make matters worse, we could see Portland – the island we lived on.

6. brutal. hours.

we finally pulled in around 4am.

there was no tidying up.

the sails were chucked in whatever locker was open.

the harbour master asked us about the trip, and if we had a place to go.

‘with those conditions, you’re a few hours from hypothermia’ he said.

but there was no reaction – from either of us.

no elation to be home, even though you’d think that strange.

we went to bed, because that’s what you do.


that was the word I was looking for.

we had gone into a dangerous patch of water unprepared.

we weren’t punished,

simply scolded.

and thus, the going to bed without a thought.

I was, despite the pricey champagne offered to Poseidon, given a huge dose of ‘are you sure you want to do this?’

and the funny thing was – a few days later,

I was.

a few days later.


Got something to say? Feel free, I want to hear from you! Leave a Comment

  1. Penrose says:

    So happy your blog is not blocked at work — as you are really helping me to not lose my mind; not to mention making me smile a bit in this wretchedness some call a “profession”.

    Happier still that you are alive! Cheers!

  2. Enno says:

    Poeh, you will need to upgrade this boat if you want to sail solo down south. But you’ve got plenty of time.

  3. a three hour tour… A THREE HOUR TOUR…

  4. Leslie W says:

    Aric é muito viril.

  5. tee says:

    You’re braver and crazier than I will ever be. God love ya’ for it, too:) Glad it was only cold and wet you suffered out there….

  6. excuter says:

    ok, so next time (I assume there will be a next time?) you need a 20l canister with fuel, some waterproof bags (look here, that´s what I mean: http://www.masseysoutfitters.com/shop/product.asp?pf_id=PAJIAABILNPCJMGI&mybuyscid=9909246644 )and/or tons to stuff your stuff in, to safe your stuff from getting wet (your on a boat, hello_oh)(the sleeping stuff to!).

    That probably sounded more harsh than it should, sorry!
    More luck next time and remember, all these obstacles that occure on such a trip are what make the sailors so hard and strong and that´s why captain Jack Sparrow is that cool. Also remember: “there are only two things that matter: What a man can and what a man can not do!” (- captain Jack Sparrow) ^_^

  7. excuter says:

    Before I forget: always have a set of clothes with you to change if what you wearing is wet. And a blanket (it can be a life saver in so many ways).And a knive and some Rope and…I better stop now… ^_^

  8. SD Steve says:

    A shakedown cruise in lousy weather always sucks. So… how did she sail? Now you’ve got a list of little things you need to handle before you take ‘er out again but that’s par for the course. Hopefully this will be the worst you’ll face so get all that bad luck out of the way.

    As JP might say, “If not for the courage of the fearless crew…” 🙂

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