What a wonderful day it was yesterday on the Barge, good company, nice weather be it a bit cold and lovely hospitality from the crew.
Pennant at the top of the mast.
As you can see the day started off really nice and after we turned at Sun Pier Captain Geoff, ordered the sails up.
Upnor Castle as I have never seen it before, this close and also bathed in sunshine.
It was quite an operation to get the Edith May in full sail but eventually we were cruising down the river without a sound, no noise, no engine, was earely quite as we sailed on down the river.
Here is a friend John at the wheel, we all had a go and it was very strange as you turned it right around and nothing happened then all of a sudden she started to move across the river.
Main sails aloft, at the end of the sail there was a large ring which travelled across the deck of the boat in a wooden cylindrical beam fixed across the deck. As the boat tacked you had to have your wits about you otherwise you would get knocked over by the sail and worst still pushed into the river.
We passed this rusty old hulk which was waiting to be restored. Old and new came to mind.
Looking down river the clouds were gathering but the rain held off.
Another Michael, one of the crew adjusting the sail.
As you can see the Barge is steered with a conventional wheel. If you look carefully you can see the beam across the boat which held the main sail, as the Barge tacked the ring on the left hand side would shoot across to the right.
Now I had to put this wonderful landmark in, (sorry Eileen), I did hear a rumour that it is soon to be decommissioned so it may not be there much longer.
The Vestanhav being unloaded at the Power Station. The cloud formations were changing all the time.
Back under way one of the crew was doing some restoration work, can you see him? See the sail out to the left fixed to the movable beam.
Well that's one way of repairing the dingy.
As it was 1pm we went below for our lunch lovely Steak and Kidney pie was on order and very nice it was too, all washed down with a pint of Beer. It was nice and cosy below whilst we ate our lunch and nice and warm too.
One thing to add, I went to the Loo and noticed that although we were travelling along it was almost silent apart from the occasional groan of the wooden hull as we were under sail. A wonderful experience in this day and age with all the noise of the twenty-first century that is usually around us.
There is a lot more to tell so I will continue tomorrow.
Thanks for looking.
Nite nite, luv Mike XX