Saturday, 24 November 2012

Looking for a home

Today was another perfect day sailing and at the weekend. Wow! It seems the winter months have been the best for conditions since september we have had great days every weekend. Freyja had a wee friend dougal and his mum. Despite the very cold 3 deg wind the skipper managed to convince the crew to so many cloths it was to hot in the harbour but out on the seaway smiles all round taking in the view and having lunch in cosy apparel.

Below is a boat for sale next to ours a little smaller and in need of a clean but the advert says cheap as chips a fellow sailer suggested £50 might win the deal.

Saturday, 17 November 2012

Company this time

Well it was not a piece of string on the helm this weekend. Freyja in her new cold wether suit, Fergus grumpy because he has no new suit, bt the dog squeezed in the middle for additional warmth dispute her new waterproof and insulated new coat too and dad Tom getting especially squashed smiling even with a num bum.

Saturday, 10 November 2012

Smug sailer

Sorry, I just could not take the grin off my face, 6 knots, sunshine and short handed but for the dog. It was heaven. There is no more sense of peace than on the water silently hissing along with the wind. I feel very lucky, having said that it did take a great leap of imagination, hard work and considerable prior experience that has got me this far. So much thanks goes to my dad in sowing the seed of wind and jenny my wife for housing and feeding the craft bum that I am danger of becoming.

Wednesday, 1 August 2012


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Thursday, 19 July 2012

Family trips

Since my last post to this blog we have been out on two family sails. The first last week in rough conditions to help Freyja understand that we can come straight back in when it's too much for her while see grows her sea legs. We left the harbour and turned around and came back in, it was a good lesson. Jenny was amazed that the sea jumped about so much and chuckle just bob about so easily ontop of it! On Tuesday we went out in calm sea and light wind, it was bliss, Freyja was a bit shocked to see it so flat after last week and we all had big grins. Jenny was happy on the helm trying to predict where the confused wind was coming from, there appered to be a sea breezing coming in under the off shore northwesterly. It was easy for Freyja and Fergus to explore the deck hanging there feet over the bow, and moving at only 2 knots it was easy for me captain daddy to fish mackerel over the stern, 8 big ones went in the bucket. After 3.5 hrs and a slow 5 NM we came in. On this short passage we saw two dolphines, some seals up close, puffins diving and low flying scewers. In harbour we had arranged to sleep on board, we let Fergus and Freyja get the dingy inflated and while tied to the mother ship they messed about practicing there rowing skills with BT our dog as passenger. Our nabourghing fishing boat gave us some boiled prawns and I cooked the tea. It was along time before the wee ones settled down 9:45pm, mum and dad crashed out shortly after a bear in the cockpit and quietly watching an otter.

Monday, 25 June 2012

Busy day

It was a busy day on Sunday, after clearing up the aftermath of the small gathering we had the day before for our tenth wedding anniversary, we packed all we needed for a few hours family sail and left the house at 11am. Packing was no lightweight task considering the expected weather, these were the first slight seas to be had at the weekend but the forecast was for strong wind heavy showers and sunshine. We took everything. After a very relaxing lunch on the boat we all took great pleasure in rigging the sails, a jib and putting a reef in the main. Fergus and Freyja loved hooking on the jib to the forstay and putting on shackles. The sun had all made us very hot in our thermals sat having lunch and when dad suggested putting on waterproofs it fell on deaf ears. So he said it again as we gently put-putted under power out the shelter of the harbour into the cold NNW wind and the large dark clouds came into view with obvious rain coming our way. The waterproofs went on faster than I had seen before. The initial gentle heaving of the sea reminded Fergus and Freyja they were at sea and Fergus panicked and then calmed down when he saw mum and dad grinning, and Freyja just never stopped taking in the big grin on dads face so saw nothing to be afraid of. Clear of all shore line Jenny took the helm and dad lifted and set the sails for a reach, but not close to wind, just to keep things moving along gentle. At the point the boat healed over slightly Fergus took the fear as he had the first time he experienced this with grandad on the Caladonian Canal. After a few minutes of reassurance Fergus calmed down and after a tack or two heading past St Abbs he jumped on to his feet and announced "I have grown new legs, I have grown my sea legs", much hilarity and relief all round. After a jibe and a second go at heaving too and fishing, Freyja announced her tummy hurt, and with my immediate response in turning Chuckle home Freyja was quite happy studying the coastline finding the spot where we like to picnic at Coldingham Bay. Fergus 7 years and Freyja 4 had been waiting a long time to go out in Chuckle and a good deal of nervous energy had been spent in the brief 2 hours we were out. Jenny noted a considerable adventurers pride and triumphant, and quiet sense of excitement from them. Hot soup and cheese rolls all round, came from the galley, we had a much deserved supper aboard in the harbour. Fergus insisted in getting another shot at fishing in before we left. While the boat was made good to leave he stood in a heavy rain shower fishing for flat fish. Hopefully this is the beginning of future summer excursions on Chuckle, and acclimatisation to the trials of the seaway in good time for a few days up the coast on a mini cruise. We can but try.

Saturday, 23 June 2012

Made a new reel and fitted new rod hardware

Seems I have got stuck on fixing up old broken stuff of late. This rod I snapped in two on Tuesday afternoon. My friend gave me his newish unwanted rod so I had one rod and reel and one broken rod. Ordered the parts for rod and another old Scarborough reel. Remade a wooden spool for broken reel from eBay for a fivea and refurbished the rod. when Fergus and Freyja are big enough they can use it, until then I think it will give me great pleasure.

My dads old fishing rod

Friday, 22 June 2012

sun and slight seas

On tuesday this week i made it out for a fantastic sail in the first bit of great weather and slight seas since we put chuckle in the water. it felt like it had been a long wait, but well worth it. in calmer conditions i could confidently try out sailing her single handed, i had backup in the form of my sea kayak mate from berwick, who came along more than willingly with a chance of sea fishing on offer. we sailed and we fished all over the waters from eyemouth to beyond burnmouth. the sun shone the rain came and went and winds came from all directions gusting to force 5/6 infront of some big rain clouds. my plan was to practice my single handed sailing and find chuckles heave too charecture. with her long keel she hardly moved through the water even with all her biggest sails up and strong winds, in quite chopping conditions she was very stable and comfortable sat heaved too with backed jib and main out square to wind. my next trip i must take a camara, it was a shame not to be able to record the perminent grin i had on my face, although the feeling of great satifaction and joy of the sea will not be forgoten.

Thursday, 21 June 2012

Sail cover

right now i have my newly made sail cover in the wash, i made it from an old dinghy cover it needed patches and a wash.

Sunday, 3 June 2012

Sailing at last

In the fog and choppy swell we did a few tacks keeping in sight of the rocks and boy out side Eyemouth. Desperate for a sail having had no chance at all for the last 3 weeks we made an excited trial for greater adventures to come. Bring on a southwesterly wind.tomorrow is my birthday and I will be spending the entire day fixing up chuckle some more. My near perfect day only if I could fit in a quick sail as well. When will the wind turn?

Sunday, 20 May 2012

Our first night aboard

Last night we slept our first night aboard chuckle. It was better than camping no tent to put up and the foam matresses were a dream. We spent the rest of Saturday afternoon and most of Sunday pottering about eyemouth and doing jobs to chuckles. Fitting a mast boot, kicking strap, wind vain the main sail and exit pipe for the new auto bilge pump. We did not go to sea, there was a biggish swell and cold east wind and there was no point when we could have so much fun getting to know the ropes. Fergus said his favourite bit was he helming chuckle as we put putted our little boat through the harbour to meet the harbour master who very kindly came out on his day off to lift me up in his forklift truck bucket to fit the wind vain. Freyja favourite bit about the first night on board adventure was sleep in cosy chuckle and BT falling in and dady drying the dog with a towl. I just can't wait to get down there again, and sail her out now in favourable winds...... Waiting for a westerly.