Wednesday, 9 September 2009

Nearly there....

Its the fourth day and we are still in high spirits, despite sailing through fog and under clouds for the past three days. So much has happened really, no-one ever gets bored on these trips; there's no time to! It was nice on the the first day in Torquay, finally meeting up with Claire and Rhiannon for the first time in over a year!!!! And, as usual i managed to be the last one to arrive. The second day we went to living coast, a sanctuary for penguins, puffins, seals and that sorta thing. Rhi was obssesed with the poo there... Rhi, they ARE birds, they to have business to do! Got sailing later that day, Tracy looking out for dolphins and managed to see about five imaginary dolphins! We went night sailing!!! It was quite scary actually, we couldnt see anything along with the fog! We moored in this really snazzy marina in Portland, heated floors, heated mirrors, flash showers. It was absolute luxury! We sailed past the World windsurfing championships.... c'mon Great Britain! Erm, then we had more fog and had to use the fog horn, it was soooo loud! Last night we stayed in poole, near famous people! Bradley walsh off Corrie and Rosemary Schreiger or something, with a really flash boat, we wanted to go on it. Passed the needles and now in Yarmouth. Not long to go now!!! The peeps are great :) I knew Claire, Rhi, Tom and Tracy from previous trips and it was so nice to see them again! Especially when Emily visited with the cakes, they were so yummy after a whole day of non-stop cake talk! Ocean Village tomorrow! Abi [09/09/09 20:00]

This trip is AWESOME!! We have had sooooo much fun it is unbelievable. It is the fourth day and I don't remember not talking except when sleeping and being sick, but I am okay now. On the first day we were just chillaxing and getting to know each other, but I already knew Claire, Abi and Rhi so that was good. The next day we went to see the penguins, puffins, seals and Rhi managed to discover that they poo a lot and was disgusted. She also taught us a few words and we pwned her!! That was really fun. We decided to make a rap as well it is amazing, especially with mine and Claire's singing, it is gangster brapp!! I am MC Tombaaaaa and Claire is MC Octopuuss. Then sailing that day was long and hard and I was sick, but we made it to Portland eventually. Kerry was sick as well and has a bad eye, but she is still laughing and giggling. The Showers were amazing!! On the third day Claire showed me her amazing sock puppet show. It blew my mind!! Our sailing was really good that day and Rhi had a nice sleep and woke up a bit mardy so she kicked Claire's bed it was funny!! At Poole Emily came down with her parents and they brought two homemade cakes down for us, they were amazing. This was while Barnaby was putting his studying to practice by fixing the switch under the sink. Then we sailed to Yarmouth on the next day with a great days sail and did a lot more rapping. Then we went for a walk and had some delicious ice cream, whilst I danced to some wicked tunes. I can't wait untill the homecoming and the party, it will be Phat!!!!!!!!! Tom

What can I say, I have had the most amazing time, I have met some wonderful young people, Abi, Barnaby, Claire, Rhi and Tom, who have all made me very welcome - it's been such fun, although the first day, didn't spend too much time on deck as very poorly but since then, managed to stay up on deck all the time - sailing has been brilliant, never done anything like this before, even managed to help put the sail up today, rather scary. Weather not been too great but didn't expect too much in Britain!!!!! Can't wait to see the video and the rap - cooked curry the first night with Claire, a success!!! I've even been renamed - Jerry John Kerry Gold!!!! Can't wait to see the boat sail into Cowes and see everyone again - well done everyone - an amazing experience and thank you for inviting me to join leg 16!!!! Kerry

I've been looking forward to Round Britain for the entire year and it has certainly delivered! From the moment I boarded Scarlett Oyster I instantly felt a million miles away from everything else that was going on at home, at school and in my head. I couldn't wait to get out on the water, it was going to be a good week. It was great to be reunited with Abi, Rhiannon and Tom and to meet Barnaby, Kath, Karen and Kerry. The weather hasn't been great but we've definitely made the best of it. Sailing at night was an incredible experience especially through thick fog, a night I will never forget... It's been pretty much non-stop laughter from the word go. You'll hear more from me soon but I must attend to the sausage casserole on the hob as Tracy and I are chefs tonight and we wouldn't want anything sticking to the bottom of the pan! Claire

Sunday, 30 August 2009

Poem Rendition 1: cue D

Poem Rendition 1: cue D

At the start of the week we were set a target,
To sail south around Wales in the beautiful Scarlet.

We departed from Holyhead just after midnight,
The waves so big, they gave us a fright!

It was a starry starry night that night we set sail,
With Simon relaying the peanut shark tale!

Abersoch was our next port of call,
Fun, games and laughter was had by all.

We went to the beach, to play in the sun,
We were happy, but exhausted, when the day was done.

There was an auction, raffle and dancing galore,
Money raised for the Trust grew more and more.

It was on the boat that we tried to behave,
But "While Paul was up", he became Vicky's slave!

We ate granola bars 'til they came out of our ears,
Paul [I] was so funny that he [I] had us in tears!

From Pwllheli we set sail at 10 o'clock,
Excited about our journey to Cardiff lock.

Somehow, Ben managed to sleep the whole way through,
And the boys forgot potatoes in the Irish stew!

After 'hurricane Scarlet', the sun finally came out,
A 'rather tidy' trip without a doubt!

Thirty-three hours down the line,
We arrived in Cardiff, just in time!

We were so lucky to have such a great crew,
Cath, Karen and Jo were the best... it's true!

Skipper Cath led the voyage al the way 'round,
She always had a smile, never a frown.

Karen had a giggle during our sing-a-long,
And showed great patience as we ruined each song!

Jo was a scouser, which meant there was two,
A lot to put up with, for the rest of the crew!

So a great big thank you to our wonderful crew,
It wouldn't've been half as fun, if we didn't have you! [24/08/09 13:00]

by the crew of leg 14- Paul, Vicky, Rob, Ben & Ross

Thursday, 27 August 2009

Wind, waves andlots of laughter (and hopsitality)

LEG 14 has got to be the best one i have done on this voyage, the crew Im with are fantastic, but most of all the activities are immense riding on the Dart 16 around Abersoch was great fun with dear old vicky lol.
the the party cannot forget that one, the meal was just out of this world, salmon and prawn cocktail was not my cup of tea but the main meal was braised beef in red wine sauce with gravy baby potatoes and vegetables, how lush was that, shame we could not have seconds, the the best bit the apple and treacle tart yum yum.
the games we played was funny heads and tails.
the auction was great made loads of money.
then we had to sail from phwelli to cardiff and wow what a journey was asleep all the way mostly 33hrs which was suprising.
now were in sunny cardiff, cardiff yeah but wouldn't say sunny lol.

cya lata .benjamin james murphy

leg 14 this is my one and only leg on this once in a lifetime trip round britain leg 14 is the Holyhead to Cardiff leg it has been fantastic me and another lad from torquay called ben were the last to arrive on the boat after a long days travel and had to set sail literally straight away we sailed through the night from holyhead to Pwllheli were we spent the next two days there having a absolute blast kayaking and messing around in the darts as well as attending a SCYC party as the guests of honour which was a great night before we had to go get some sleep ready for the next part of the trip where we sailed a agonising but amazing 32 hour straight sail through to cardiff and thats where we are now getting ready for the remaining time on scarlet oyster getting her ready to go again for leg 15 where some more amazingly lucky people will get the chance to take part in the round britain trip

speak to you soon ross mcguinness

Hello everyone, Paul here. I'm just sitting here after cooking breakfast thinking about what an amazing trip I have had! Leg 14 from Holyhead to Cardiff has been unbelievable. The sailing, the crew, the people we've met along the way and the sights we have saw are truly unforgettable. It's just been magnificent. It all started brilliantly in Holyhead where we left a very generous Marina Club to set sail at midnight. As it was the first time I have ever sailed I was a little bit nervous to say the least, but this just turned into pure excitement as we were bouncing out of the marina sailing over huge waves, and all having a great time. I didn't this could be topped but everything just seems to get better and better, we've had another great sail from Pwlleli to our finish point, and the hospitality we were shown at Abersoch was amazing, so thank you guys! A big THANK YOU of course to EMT as without the trust, none of us would have had this magnificent experience. We now have to crack on with the making of our movie which will document the leg, but for now....over and out! Much love

Hey Robert here me and paul have just made breakfast and we have had an amazing trip with all the new people we have meet on the way from Holyhead 2 cardiff we arrived in Holyhead on friday and we meet the crew and the others people and we all got 2 know each other and that night we set sail for Abersoch about 12:30 am and we got in about 7:00 am and we had about 2 hours sleep and the we sailed 2 Pwllheli and we spent 2 days there and on that day we had fun on the beach and that night we had a three course meal for starter we had seafood on a clam shell and then we had beef in a red wine sauce and for afters we had apple and treacle tart and and all the people we meet were really nice and on sunday we had a day 2 relax and in the evening we went bowling and on monday we set sail for cardiff we left Pwllheli about 10:30 am and we got in 2 cardiff about 19:00 pm and we had a good sleep and now we r making a movie about our trip and then we r having a party and bbq and on the last day we r going 2 have a talk at the hospital about the trust and that will be the end of our trip
sining off Robert Sharland.

Jo from EMT Here, just had a great few days sailing with the crew on Scarlet - it has been fantastic to take part in a leg of Round Britain and to get to see first hand the fruits of everyones hard work over the last 12 months. The crew have been fantastic - lots of laughter despite the rain and waves (mostly during my watch!) there have been many funny moments and memories which are all currently being re-enacted and recorded for the leg 14 video - we get to throw buckets of water over the whole crew!!! so watch this space for the link to you tube! The reception we had in Holyhead and Abersoch was amazing to know that the Trust has supporters all around the country is fantastic and the amount of time and effort everyone has put in to make us feel welcome and special has really added to everyones experience. Everyones Welsh has been coming along in leaps and bounds ready for our Skandia reception at 1600 today. Looking forward to the welcome home party on the 12th in Cowes hopefully see you all there xx

A rather wet day here in Cardiff after a lovely sunny day for our arrival into Cardiff Bay. It's been an excellent week with a lot of sailing for the crew - albeit in 2 hops but a lot of miles covered in those 2 hops. There has been great laughter along with a lot of rain and waves, and sitting off lighthouses for hours on end trying to beat into tide - which isn't a great idea around headlands but I guess that is one of those things when you are sailing along the coast for over 24 hours. Jo and I took great delight in helping the crew out with their video this afternoon - in the rain they wanted us to throw buckets of water at them along with dousing them with water from the hose - this was something we couldn't refuse - it's all in the video. We've had such wonderful hospitality along this Welsh coastline - the welcome, dinner and auction in Holyhead, the amazing day we spent in Abersoch with the SCYC at their annual keelboat dinner and out welcome into Cardiff today at the Cardiff Bay Yacht Club - thank you to everyone who has helped along the way. It's been an excellent leg, can't believe there are only two more to come - sad and excited that the welcome home party is so close - it will be an emotional time me think!! Look forward to seeing many of you there Karen out x [26/08/09 17:00]

Wednesday, 19 August 2009

Baptism of fire (really water) for crew of Leg 13

Well it's a wet dreich day here in Holyhead. After a tops time in Liverpool visiting my sister and surviving my horse riding it was back on the boat to meet our new crew for our trip to Holyhead. Yesterday we headed out of the Mersey all hopeful of an excellent sail to Holyhead to arrive at a civilised hour of late afternoon!! How wrong did we get it!! Once out of the Mersey the wind shifted from left to right and back again by over 40 degrees - not the best when you're trying to sail in one direction. It also decided that instead of delivering the expected Force 4/5, it would deliver any wind strength from Force 3 up to Force 6 (soon to be followed by a quick dip into the Force 7 bracket as we approached Holyhead Bay). It was at this time that we had the delights of seeing the Skerries for a tad too long this evening as well, due to the unexpected winds during the day we missed the tide off this corner of Anglesey so we sat looking at the Skerries for rather longer than hoped. So our late afternoon arrival soon became a late evening arrival in some delightful torrential rain with wind blowing a hooley! Im not sure how much our new crew enjoyed their baptism of fire (more likely water). Initially the waves crashing over the boat were great fun but this amusement soon dwindled and our crew slowly disappeared below to warm up - although they did take some convincing to go down to their bunks. Woke to the wind blowing the doors off this morning and the rain coming down in torrents - how happy was I to be tucked up in my bed safely arrived in Holyhead. We've had a tops day doing what you do on days like this - drinking copious quantities of tea, playing boardgames, pool and eating too much!! Dinner still to come too. Must venture out into the mist now to dry off. Until later Karen out x [19/08/09 21:00]

This is James Victoria, Beth, Tyler and Will. we are all aboard the Scarlet Oyster. we are currently at Hollyhead docks after a very busy (and sleep for some) day yesterday. Everyone is in high spirits after playing our own version of Articulate! The first day was quite quiet as we were all eating to know each other. We arrived in the afternoon and had all of the tour and instructions before Will and Vic cooked dinner an then everyone played a late night game of Balderdash!!! Next morning was an early awakening after a late night but everyone was excited about the sailing to come. We prepared the boat and left Liverpool with Holyhead as our aim. Everyone was having fun however the wind wasn't being kind and kept on changing so the boat was very rocky and spirits drop as they saw there lunch again in a bowl... no more need be said. Lots of us went below to warm up or sleep to stop feeling ill. We had a great day and it was exciting and after we arrived at Hollyhead and everyone felt better. After a long day we were all soooooo excited about having a warm shower ! And then we were even more excited about pizzas being delivered! We all ran back to the boat and got wet but sat down for a good few pieces of pizza. The boat had never been so quite and full of people making yum noises. Everyone swiftly went to sleep soon after that. Next morning we all had a lovely lie in appreciated by all. Soon after we had all woke up we were treated to eggy bread and bacon for a late breakfast. It then started to rain so we had a relaxing morning playing Articulate, boys vs girls, guess who won.... the girls! Later on we went and played pool and investigated the marina shop. After a competitive morning we came back and cleaned the boat and watched the lifeboat leave for practice. Everyone is getting on really well and we are all having such fun. It is an amazing experience and we still have two days left. So we all want to say thanks for the experience and don't try and cook soup while the boat is tipping on one side! x

James, Victoria, Beth, Tyler and Will

Monday, 10 August 2009

Isle of (wo)Man

Can’t believe we’re already in the Isle of Man more than half way through Leg 12!! Had an excellent stopover in Belfast, arrival up to the Odyssey last Sunday was amazing with the tug boat spraying water behind us and all family, friends and the Lady Mayor waiting to greet us at the pontoon - was quite an emotional arrival - given that it is my home port and mum and dad were there to wave us in. Managed to catch up with good friends too while at home and of course home cooking - stuffed pork fillet on Sunday, my first night at home - excellent!! Sadly the stopover wet all too quickly but we were soon off again with our new crew to Ardglass, mum and dad came out again in their boat to wave us off - or maybe it was to make sure we left as they then drove down to Donaghadee to check up on us!! Lovely harbour in anchorage - never having sailed down that part of the coastline it was excellent to see from the sea - with the Mourne mountains standing there as a back drop. It was soon across the Irish Sea to the Isle of Man - first stop Port St Mary, then as we have some time here we have decided to do a circumnavigation of the Island. Very pleased with this idea, as we have had time to explore Douglas by electric railway and have continued on round to Peel this morning. AT one point we did look as if we were heading back to Northern Ireland due to wind direction and a rather adverse tide which either had us heading back home or taking us a tad too swiftly sideways!! This was just a minor inconvenience as round the west side of the Island we were treated to a broaching minke whale and at least 6 basking sharks doing what basking sharks do - basking in the summer sun! It was amazing sight, one even came along behind the boat and with the water so clear you could clearly make out it’s huge open mouth. Definitely a sight that will remain a highlight of the whole voyage. So we’re here in Peel and can’t get out until after 1 o’clock tomorrow - sometimes the tide is in our favour - so we get a good relaxing evening and morning to explore - excellent!! Until later Karen out. [10/08/09 19:00]

Hey people, its gerard from belfast, just on the leg 12 Bangor to the Isle of man, rite round the isle, then on to Liverpool and i would just like to say ”O my god!” , its the 5th day in and we're flying threw, just like the time. We were told that the Isle of man is a great spot to find basking sharks? Third day in and i was like, “yeah rite loads”! then all of a sudden SIX at the same time, how cool was that! I was so thrilled i screamed. One of them was so close that i could clearly see in its extra large mouth, definitely one of the best experiences in my life as a animal lover.
I am having so much fun, sleeping out at sea, missing my wee kids Jake and Ava, the better half (Trish) and dog Casey(love yas), but the crew are too cool for school so we're well entertained. We are currently docked at Peel (a lovely wee marina) and a cracking view of there castle, looking forward too tonites antics, whatever they may be?????

Hi, Marie-Clare here from Slaughtneil. currently on leg 12 with scarlet oyster. Its monday already... been a very busy week of seeing sharks, whales and of course sailing too. lol. we in peel today and we set sail for liverpool on early wednesday morning were our trip will end. Wish the girls the best of luck for the rest of there trip and thanks to them, ellen macarther trust and the northern ireland cancer fund for children for this great opportunity.

Hey all, Niall from Belfast here! Left Douglas yesterday and left Ramsey today, arrived in Peel this afternoon have had a great time so far and expect plenty more good times before the end of the trip! Having good fun with everybody on board the Scarlet Oyster, a BIG thank you to The Ellen MacArther Trust for this great opportunity they have given me!

Hi, Barbara here from Killyman! Been onboard the Scarlet Oyster for 5 days its been absolutely amazing, the crew have been great craic and have got us safely to each of our ports and am sure they get us to our end destination in Liverpool! (Hope I dont jinx us now lol) We have seen some beautiful scenes and have captured some great photos of wildlife, from birds to whales and sharks! We’ve had some great winds for sailing and the sun even managed to come out which was brilliant! I’ve learnt some more sailing techniques and gained new skills! I want to take a sentence or two to say, Thank you to both the Ellen MacArther Trust and the Northern Ireland Cancer Fund for Children for yet another brilliant trip and another phenomenally fantastic experience!

Thursday, 30 July 2009

Goodbye Scotland, Hello Northern Ireland

It was sad to be leaving Scotland yesterday but next stop was the homeland so wasn’t too bad! If the weather had been kind to us Largs would not have been our last stop, and we could have continued cruising in the Clyde for another couple of days before making the hop across the Northern Ireland. However, the weather was not going to make our lives easy so it was a hop across to Belfast Lough in one fell swoop. With the front having gone through in the morning, we waved goodbye to Largs and Scotland and sailed down the Clyde. The wind did not play too nicely to begin with as our making tack had us heading to Ayr, which for those of you not familiar with the layout of the North Channel is on the opposite side to Belfast! However, after the odd wind dance the wind started to come round from the west and we were able to start actually heading where we wanted to go - sadly on starboard tack again!! It was an awesome sail from this point on, the odd boat, lighthouse, stars, setting moon over Blackhead and plenty of sea birds to keep us entertained. It was a bit of a late arrival into Carrick but we had the promise of a long lie and then next day I was coming home to Bangor. So here we are now sitting in Bangor marina, mum and dad came to catch our lines - thank you and brought us some extra supplies - they’ve not all been finished yet!! Weather due to blow in again tomorrow so I think it will be a day of shoreside activities, which may or may not involve swimming!! Until then Karen out x

John, 28.7.09
Largs was my first encounter with the Scarlet Oyster and under a certain amount of trepidation. I have nothing to be concerned about. Welcomed aboard by Kathy who is the skipper and introduced to first mate Karen, along with Angela from NI Cancer Trust and her charge of five young people who have faced adversity from cancer. It was fantastic to see how upbeat and positive they all were, and sad to hear them talk of tumours and treatment in between discussing “normal” everyday things. Heroes.

John 29.7.09
No sleep. Yawn. Unfamiliar sounds and teenagers talking until silly O’clock not conducive to sleep. This was unfortunate as Kathy tells us we are going to exploit a gap in the weather and cross Irish sea to Carrickfergus which will take until approximately 2pm. First proper sailing and at night time too. Had good weather to start with but quickly got cold. Kathy keeps us well looked after with special hot chocolate and soup. Have a go at the wheel, bags of fun but cold and tiredness gets better of me and I crash for half an hour. Wake up shivering as we are getting closer to the harbour but wind dies on us and we switch to engine. Loads of stars in the sky, recognise the plough. We finally arrive and moor up at night, make good the boat and everyone crashes.

John 30.7.09
Some sleep. Yawn. Seem to be awake before everyone else so I decide to wander round Carrickfergus marina. The sun is shining warmly and all is good. Have a quick saunter round Black head (lighthouse) after having passed it last night before we exploit another break in the weather to skip across to Bangor. A very pleasant jaunt in fab weather and we chat as we cross. If I couldn’t see the attraction yesterday I definitely do now. Sailing is ace. Back to boat for ace lasagne and garlic bread, yum. Later, John. [30/07/09 22:00]

Wednesday, 22 July 2009

More swimming - this time the Atlantic!

Can’t believe we’re already on Leg 10 and we’ve left the Caledonian Canal! Had an awesome trip down the canal with two great crews from around Scotland. We also had an expected day with Wendy and Iain Hope and their family on Sunday - it was great thank you all. Our new crew arrived on Monday after some very helpful Skandia volunteers cleaned and polished Scarlet - it was great to meet you guys and thanks. Monday night was cricket night - well with England winning a test match in the Ashes and us having our Austalian trustee on the boat - it would have been rude not too. I think it ended up being a draw - siting bad light! Departing Caledonian Canal on Tuesday morning was superb, Wendy and Iain came down to wave us off, cloud was off Ben Nevis and the sun was shining. Unfortunately no wind so it was a motor out of Corpach down Loch Linnhe and through Corran Narrows. I’d forgotten how nice it was sailing aorund this area - it’s amazing somewhere I need to spend much more time in our cruise round next year :-) Evening was spent in Dunstaffnage wandering around the castle - by the time we got to cricket it was bad light!! Tuesday morning was very wet, had a lazy morning and left not long after 11 - lo and behold not long after leaving the sun came out and we were treated to some of most amazing scenery of the voyage so far. We had a great little anchor at Puilladobhrain - fond memories from my Day Skipper and charters with John. We stopped here for lunch - like quite a few others but unlike others we had a swim!! So that’ll be North Sea, Loch Ness, Loch Oich and Atlantic Ocean ticked for swimming now - not doing badly! So now we’re moored up in the basin at Crinan all set for a second canal tomorrow - can’t wait :-) Karen out.

Last night after a gorgeous dinner of pasta, we went to find the pitch for the second test match in our EMT Ashes Series. We walked along the beach, into the forest, into a dead end, back out again, along the shore, to the castle, and then a left turn down onto the beach. It was so beautiful,... Fran was taught by Gareth, champion skimmer, how to skim stones. It was magic, with the sunset and islands over the water. Unfortunately, we had postpone the second test, due to the the girls enjoying the simply breathtaking view and the boys’ stone throwing competition.

So today started drizzly and with very dreigh Scottich weather. But by noon, the sun had come out, and we saw dolphins! We also swam the Atlantic! - a whole 2 boat lenghts,... It was cold... actually freezing, actually beyond freezing.

We played a great game of Animal ABC as we motor sailed past the islands and lighthouses. We had a water fight,... instigated by the Aussie on board,...however, Gareth and Cath, our skipper, saught revenge.

We had the bagpipes welcome us into Crinan and are now in the most idealic harbour, with classic yachts and the forest around us. It’s been a great day. We’re looking forward to more to come. Fran, Gareth and the Aussie out.

RAWWWR! how exciting has this trip been so far :O??? also How cool was that swim??? i’ll answer that for you..... breathtaking...... quite physicly, ABSOLUTELY BELOW FREEZING! after two laps of the beautiful scarlet oyster fran and i freaked out at the mention of jelly fish and clambered back on deck. I am quite astonished at the reception into crinan lock! as we were about to enter, we were all seronaded with the sound of bagpipes, formed by a lovely little chap in the full traditional scottish kit. we are bein cooked dinner by the shepard pie master’s Luke and Gareth, but its very debatable weather they will actually top the masterfull grade A pasta dish, cooked by Joe and Timmy boy. (that comment Not at all written by joe :P) DOLPHINS, we saw a few poppin there beaks out the atlantic in an orderly fashion to greet us XD, Not to mention the seal, which at one point we thought was man over board!!! :O, we are now writting this blog awaiting dinner after a beautiful cruise, a breath taking dip in the atlantic, with fabulous scenery, lavly weather, WICKED COMPANY!!!, accompanied by the funky sound of bob marley, IT DOESNT GET MUCH BETTER THAN THAT!!!!

(*_*)PEACE OUT(*_*)
JOEY JOE JOE.*.*.*.*.*.*. And Rach....x

Friday, 17 July 2009

Scottish Loch swimming - it's great.

We’re now sat at the end of Loch Lochy - waiting to go through Gairlochy Locks and head along to Neptune’s staircase. It’s been an amazing couple of days with our new crew who arrived on Wednesday. Unfortunately yesterday we were not able to sail due to a lack of wind and the fact that Loch Oich is very shallow and narrow so we were limited to motoring in the channel. Everyone had a great time though and got to drive into and out of the locks. We moored up at a pontoon at Invergarry Castle, and with it being such a wonderul day it would have been rude not to have a swim. Three of our new crew were brave and ventured into the peaty waters of Loch Oich, closely followed by Cath and I. Cold as it was when you first got in, not half as cold as Loch Ness two days ago and it was actually warm enough to stay in for at least 5 minutes without starting to develop hypothermia. It was a very refreshing swim on such a warm sunny day - sorry to those of you living in parts of the country where I believe it has been tipping it down for days - it did rain here today! Had a lovely sail this morning along Loch Lochy, flying along at 7 knots with Joe doing a tremendous job of keeping us heading in the right direction. DInner on the go - burgers this evening, yum so musn’t keep them waiting. Karen out.

hi mum when we got to fort agustis we went to a ceilidh and we were listing to the scottish music and some people in the group were dancing but me and stewart wernt .thursday we went throught loch oich and all off the boyes went in the water karen and cath went to but non of the other went in. after that we went throught three locks .today i had to make brecfast and i made eggie bread.we sailed through loch lochy it was good because i got to steer the boat. tomoro were going to stay beside aplace called neptunes stair case and that is eaight locks going down . after that you will be happie to see me home hahaha . by joseph stewart.

The last couple of days have been very amusing with the boys on board. On Wednesday I said goodbye to the first group and met Stuart, Joseph, Ruairidh, Brandon and Michael (there are now more boys than girls!). Wednesday night I got to experience another Ceilidh, one where there was dancing involved, we all got up and joined in except Joseph and Stuart (I dont think it was cool enough). Thursday we continued down the Canal into Loch Oich in beautiful weather, some of the crew even went swimming but I wasnt brave enough! In the evening Stuart and I made pizzas, we had some very creative designs on the toppings. Today we woke up to rain, which wasnt good. However we got into Loch Lochy and managed to do some sailing, with some great work from the boys. We are now stopped for the night at the end of Loch Lochy, where tomorrow (my last day :-( ) we will continue up to Fort William. Dinner soon - burgers and potato wedges mmmmm. Fran x

hello i am having a great time on scarlet ostyer and with ruairidh went to a ceilidh fun i think....... i did do a few dances though lol and went swimming in loch oich it’s hard to swim in there i was first in well swimming in the water but it was great woot woot we are just waiting to go though some locks then we’ll be on neptens staircase oyh i can see Ben Nevis from here lolol.


Yesterday we went to a rare breeds farm, we saw Shetland ponies, donkeys, a chubby bull, highland cows and a goat with four horns. It was great. We then went out in the boat - I got to drive lots and I even parked the boat after the locks. I saw lots of swans and I was fishing - I even caught a fish - a very small one with the net. In Loch Oich I was the first person to jump into the water for a swim, which was my idea, and then everyone else copied me except Ruairidh and Brandon - they didn’t want to go in the water. Cath and Karen swam out to the anchored boat, Michael swam round the pontoon and I jumped in and out. We went for a walk and we saw a ruined castle, after this I went into the pirate ship on the bow. Fran helped me make pizzas for dinner last night - they were yum. Today we sailed down Loch Lochy and I helped Cath put up the main sail - it was hard work. We also went for a walk today and Joe and I opened one of the bridges over the canal - it was also hard work. Stuart

Tuesday, 14 July 2009

Loch Ness Challenge - Done

Awesome day. We started off with a tour round the Loch Ness RNLI lifeboat at Drumnadrochit - I think the only inland based lifeboat in the UK?! That was cool, Simon then joined us and we headed out into Urquhart Bay for the Loch Ness Challenge. We found a good spot to anchor, dropped the hook and got ready... Simon insited he should stay and ensure Scarlet didn’t drift off her anchor and he was our official witness so couldn’t possibly have gone swimming. It had to be one of the those moments where you just jumped in and swam - so we did... I’ll not say it was warm but we didn’t freeze although I was practially hyperventialting by the time I reached the stern again but did manage to hang around in the water long enough for the official photos to be taken! Once out I don’t know what all the worry was for, so much so that Cath and I jumped back in for more photo shoots - it’s not every day you get to swim in Loch Ness with the back drop of Urquhart Castle - pretty cool! The rest of the day was excellent, enough wind to sail, in fact so much so that we had to put a reef in! So now we’re happily moored up at Fort Augustus ready to tackle the lock flight tomorrow morning and then welcome the next crew tomorrow afternoon. Karen out

Today was amazin, we went sailin up the lochness again today it was cool. The wind was quite strong and we went from side to side alot and got thrown about a bit, it was so funny. It started off sunny and then it changed durin the day, we had every type of weather apart from snow and hail. We went to the life boat station place it was good, learnt alot there. Then when we were sailin Karen and Cath swam around the boat by urquhrt castle, it was funny, i cant believed they did it, it looked so cold. We are now in Fort Augustus and had fish and chips for tea, after we went a walk some where, it was really nice scenery. Now the midges are out and bitin me really bad.
mandy macdonald

Today i steered the boat again it was the best sail i have done so far it was such a buzz the way the wind was blowing the boat to the side and the rain was pouring i just felt soooooo free.The midges have been eating me alive today they won’t stop following me.Its sad we are coming to a end and leaving tomorrow but has been a experence i will never forget. It was a great opportunity just to forget the world and all the stresses of cancer the long term side effects and just be in peace away from cars,streets and roads to be around trees,mountains and water Shadab Naqvi x.

OMG today was sooo amazing i had sooo much fun . Simon joi nd us on our sail today which was quit fun as he alwes winds me and shadab up silly bt hay lol. it wasent a verry plesent day today and by that i mean the wether wasent verry nice. x( ooo welll . we were totally proper sailing today and evryone totally had a good time i enjoyd it best when the boat was goen fron side to side and we were goen throug the waves. The girles Cath & Karen went swimming in loch ness which was a we bit crazy ime glad i dident go in theeeeeeee. well what ells? the wether was sunny at the start then half way throug it started to rain agen ! What a suprise i guess thats just bony scottland for you lol. was totally amazing thoe i am glad i came . x) on the way to Fort Agustis i was steering which is like sooo fun and and i parked the boat which was soooo kool my first driving lesson in a boat. food was ok i sapose me& shadab made Haggis which was ok bt not the best lol. In all ime glad i came and in a way ime kinda sad aswell beacause its such a gra8 experience to be in the boat and lern new things but being on board is best and sailing its just soooo kool. The people are sooo nice espeshally Cath& Karen espeshally Simon vsooo helpful and grate fun. ide love to come back and be part of the group agen x) Emma xxxx > Right now getting eaten by miggies thay are sooo anoying tbh i think ther anoying evry one tbh Any way i think i better go beacause whats saposed to be a blog is turning into a book . lol bt hay thank you. Night Night xxxxxxxxxxxxxxx Emma.

Great day today with every season out to welcome us. We began with a great guided tour of the lifeboat station and the the boat itself, thanks to Neil for that. We then set out to finish our part of the leg loch Ness to Fort Augustus. With a strong wind and the sails up we went full speed through the loch. As the wind picked up we reached the high point of the sail with the boat lurching and tipping, with me at the wheel for some of it! It was a great way to end the trip and i send all my thanks to the Ellen MacArthur Trust and the crew for allowing me to join this great event. Graham Scott

Monday, 13 July 2009

No Nessie - yet....

Today we went down the lochness, it was really gd and very fun. I learnt alot today bout how to get the sail up and down from Karen and how to drive the boat from Cath. It was nice and sunny when we were sailin in the lochness which made even more special and the scenery was amazin, i really enjoyed it. [13/07/09 15:00]
mandy macdonald

Today we headed down to loch Ness which in the glorious sunshine was brilliant. Plenty of sunbathing and relaxation. Once we got to the stunning sight of loch Ness we set up sail when the wind picked up, hoisting up the mast is alot of hard work on the arms! getting ready to wash up now and head for the Ceilidh ,should be good. Graham Scott

What a cool day - through the last lock gate before heading in to Loch Ness this afternoon - absolutely awesome. Blue skies, light breeze (very light), lots of sun - the scenery is stunning. Sadly, or perhaps fortunately, no sign of Nessie yet given that we have to swim tomorrow now for our Loch Nesss Challenge:-) I had to keep reminding myself that we were in a canal when I kept seeing trees and houses out of the hatch by the nav station - no we weren’t going to run aground!! We’re now alongside in Drumnadrochit - thank you to the Loch Ness Lifeboat crew for doing a small recce on depth for us before we nosed (actually stern first) our way into the harbour. The guys have offered us a tour around the station tomorrow morning which will be cool - hopefully the rain may have stopped by then. Yes unfortunately it is now raining here in Loch Ness:-( Although spirits are high as we’re all off to the Canal Trail Ceilidh at Urquhart Castle this evening - happy days :-) Karen out.

It is my third day in Scotland and it keeps getting better and better (well maybe not the weather, although we did have some sunshine today!). We travelled into Loch Ness, which was a first for me’s absolutely beautiful! (no sign of nessy yet). Once in Loch Ness we managed to do some sailing, Shadab and I hoisted up the sail (pretty hard work) but made Scarlet Oyster look amazing! After a really yummy dinner we are now all getting ready to go to the Ceilidh (something else which is a first for me, so I am intrigued), I am sure it will be a lot of fun though... :-) Fran x

Well what can i say omg totally amazing we awoke to gorgeous wether which was fab beacause the preveous day was rainy soooo all was goood. we had news reporter doods on the boat sailing with us taking photos and asking us questions about the journey. felt quit special tbh . ooooo then we got into loch ness well i think it was loch ness! lol Any way it was amazing absalootly stunning it felt like a totally diffrent place like something from a fairy tail or maybe a dream . the journy was was gooood as the wether was 2 and i got soaked by the sail which was quite pants tbh bt i dried off kinda quick and of coarse the sun was shinny. As for swimming no one went swimming i think maby it was to cold or somen ! I SERTENLY WOULDENT HAVE GONE IN SWIMMING after feeeling how cold the water was with the sail. omg this is taking forever. lol well a weeee while to go yet bt in all havin a grate time . thanks Emma xx<3 x)

Each day just keeps getting better and better the stunnig view in loch ness was amazing today as it was realy sunny. Have got to know the crew very well and was driving the boat today ha ha i was terrible at it but gave it my best shot.Done a interview for the sunday mail they took lots of pictures and was asked lots of questions about my cancer. I also went to a ceilidh that was realy good there was a realy good singer. Shadab

Sunday, 12 July 2009

Caledonian Canal - we're here!!

After arriving yesterday (in the bright sunshine), I enjoyed meeting the crew and Scarlet Oyster. On our first evening we all tucked in to a lovely dinner, and a fun game of Articulate, then off to bed we went. We unfortunatley woke up to rain this morning, but that didnt stop us...we got our water proofs on and were off! We entered our first lock taking us into the Caledonian Canal, very exciting. We had a short stop off for some soup to warm us all up....before more locks! I am now looking forward to Fajittas and going further up the Canal tomorrow... Fran x

We’re in the Caledonian canal!! After a rather wet morning and putting off venturing out - well we did actually have some stuff to do (sort out Twitters and photos etc.). the rain eventually peetered out to just a drizzle to allow us to go through safety briefs before heading out if Inverness. It was a great stop at Inverness and cracking day for the official opening yesterday - thanks to everyone who helped out- you made our stay very special. We got the crew working in the first flight of lock gates - pulling the boat through from lock to lock. A lot of people came out to see us too which was great. Thanks again to Willie for helping out with the lines in this flight and all the lock keepers for helping us through the various obstacles, sorry swing bridges and lock gates. It’s been a tops day, and it can only get better... Loch Ness here we come and with that comes our Loch Ness Challenge - swimming around the boat!! Will report in on that later - unless Nessie gets us first.....Laters, Karen

Had a great start to the trip and a good nights sleep. Waking up to a dripping roof however was a bit unfortunate! Despite the rain still pelting down on us we set out and i had my first practice at sailing and the struggle of the many types of knots involved. It was also my first experience in the lock gates which was lots of fun and interesting. After a day of good sailing and terrible weather i set out to make the dinner, hoping not to poison anybody.

Well! On the first day of my trip i was verry nerveous as i didn't know what to expect but
first impression of the boat is really kool and i cant belive ive actually come hear. i'me just waitin for someone to give me a slap and totally waken me up bt to be honest i dont think i'me sleeping at all. the people are really nice and helpful. the food is ok but hay i live in the frige lol so food is food to me lol theeeee.

Day two woke up verry weerdly and me and shadab and the lovely new girle we met mandy slept in for breakfast lol. ime so not a morning person loooool. first day sailing on the boat was soooo kool and i was like the captain sailing the boat theee lol i was driving omg. thought i might get sea sickness but ive been ok so far fingers crossd X) tomorow we're of to loch ness hopfully going swimming but i dont think ill be goin in beacause ive got the funniest feeling ive forgotten plus i dont wana be cold . and and most of all get eatin by Nessie theeeeee x) Emma xxxx [12/07/09 19:00]

Wednesday, 8 July 2009

Happy in Inverness

Here in Inverness - it’s been an amazing few days. Had a lovely evening stay in Whitehills, out to the local village hotel for dinner - great to get off the boat to stretch the legs. The wind picked up over night quite significantly, thankfully the harbour entrance seemed fine so it was on with the layers and wet weather gear - which hasn’t been out for a while I have to say - and out into the wind and waves. It was a little lumpy and rather wet - well it’s all character building and sadly no more whale sightings. About 3 o’clockish we passed Lossiemouth - our most northerly point on our voyage and then we were able to have some south in our heading - so half way round now - can’t believe we’re now homeward bound. Also managed to get our fastest speed on the trip 11.9 knots - tremendous. What an amzing welcome we got coming into Inverness Firth, a surprise visit from the RNLI to escort us in - superb and jumping dolphins at Chanonry Point. Also got to sail past our old house in Avoch - forgot what an amazing view we had from the house - will need to move back some day. Amazing welcome from the marina staff, and what a great marina it is, right at the mouth of the River Ness. Really pleased to be here in Inverness, just wish it was for longer :-( However, Caledonian Canal next - so can’t complain!! Karen

Had a mad few days recently. Set out from Whitehills yesterday for what can only be descirbed as an epic journey to Inverness. Was very wet, wind and loads of waves. Was good fun for a while but then I got a little seasick :-(. Ended up going to sleep just after Lossiemouth. Woke up just in time to see the Dolphins and have a ride on the RNLI inshore lifeboat (which was great fun and very very quick!)
Inverness is amazing and welcome has been incredible! Everyone has been so so friendly. We went dolphin spotting today and saw....seals! No Dolphins though but we had a nice chilled out sail and it was lots of fun.
No Pirate invasions yet, the weather is wrong for the Pirate Ship.

helloooooo its benny boy again lol
what an amazing day yesterday sailed from white hills to the all mighty inverness
who has the most awfull footabll team going hahaha.
but omg the waves were fantastic splashing all over us getting us drenched “brilliant”,
but when we got a bit close to inverness what an escort it only had to be the almighty
RNLI which was great im supprised how fast it went for 145hp engine, bit sad we didnt see our best friend william the whale but saw ernie the dolphin tho which brightened up the day after being drenched.
today we went for a little sail to the inverness firth but no dolphins but apparently kim saw one might be the anti-sickness tablets making her hillucinate haha.
but when i done my almighty seal dance even tho i looked like an idiot the seals apeared so looks like im the new dr doolittle lol, now just waiting for my massive extra large meat feast pizza to come cant wait im starving was going to have a pancake earlier but piers ended up mistaking jam for onion relish and thats a consultant for you haha.
speak again tomorow bye folks

Ben Murphy ;-)

hey every body,

party fiesta for ever............all night long ...all night long ....sorry about that singing in the saloon....just about too eat a pizza free from inverness marina and getting alittle scared about how nice, freindly and dahm right welcoming the scottish are ....arrrrrrgggggghhhhh.......

kim is the she says....

yeah pizza is here bye ...ha

john-boy, kims name for me ...
[08/07/09 19:00]

Tuesday, 7 July 2009

Of whales and pirate ships....

Bit of a lag in blogging recently, will endeavour to right this soon. We are now in the small village of Whitehills after a very exciting day yesterday but not down to the sailing. Sadly there was a lack of wind yesterday on leaving Peterhead and any wind that did appear was from exactly where we wanted to head to, so it was a bit of a frustrating time trying to get around Rattray Head. However, once clear of Rattray Head we were able to bear away a touch, get some sails out and actually get sailing - for a change the wind even behaved and kept going further to the north to allow us to get into Whitehills. It’s a lovely wee village, which will definately have to be one of our stops when I sail ound britain with my very understanding husband! Anyhow the exciting bit of yesterday were the 4 broaching whale sightings - how very cool. Add this to our numerous dolphin sightings and large numbers of sea birds it’s been a great trip so far. Who knows what today will hold... Laters Karen

Hi, tis Emma blogging from Scarlet and currently sat in Whitehills which looks like a town out of a Tim Burton film (very cool). We’re getting ready for long trek all the way to Inverness and definately hoping to add to the long list of fun wildlife we have seen so far on this trip! So far there have been (lots of) Dolphins, some Puffins, many Jellyfish (in varying colours), a couple of seals and (possibly the coolest) a Whale!
An update of the happenings of our Pirate ship now... After a successful minor (and brief) invasion of Peterhead and the unfortunate loss of the Parrot we chose not to try to stage an occupation of the pontoon here in Whitecliffs but hoping to be able to take over in Inverness!
Will keep you posted!

The weather has been rough overnight and Cath has decided to go direct to Inverness. Yesterday we saw five whale sightings and it was brilliant. What a brillant time i am having, and i don’t want it to end, everyone on baord is great, especailly Kim as she adds abit of humour to the trip. Had a really brillant meal last night at the pub. Getting ready for a long day ahead as we are sailing direct to Inverness because of the weather, and can’t wait to see what in store.

what an experiance seeing a whale was, Me John and Kim heard a wierd crying noise and saw loads of seagulls attacking something black in the water but was distant tho.
John was like no its a dolphin but i told him its not a dolphin as they click and whistle to communicate to others i told him it was a whale sound but no one believed me at all then Kim all on her own saw a big black creature jump out of the sea and made a massive splash n told me n john then we saw it spurt out all its water n we all shouted its a whale its a whale then everyone turned over and there it was againg and again 4 fantastic time we saw the beautifull creature so now were on a 10 hour sail direct to inverness because if we stop over night in bucky we well be stuck there for the whole week as theye give very strong gales coming in but i will defo keep u guys all informed if we see plenty more of william the whale cya folks.

Ben Murphy ;-)
[07/07/09 09:00]

Of whales and pirate ships....

Bit of a lag in blogging recently, will endeavour to right this soon. We are now in the small village of Whitehills after a very exciting day yesterday but not down to the sailing. Sadly there was a lack of wind yesterday on leaving Peterhead and any wind that did appear was from exactly where we wanted to head to, so it was a bit of a frustrating time trying to get around Rattray Head. However, once clear of Rattray Head we were able to bear away a touch, get some sails out and actually get sailing - for a change the wind even behaved and kept going further to the north to allow us to get into Whitehills. It’s a lovely wee village, which will definately have to be one of our stops when I sail ound britain with my very understanding husband! Anyhow the exciting bit of yesterday were the 4 broaching whale sightings - how very cool. Add this to our numerous dolphin sightings and large numbers of sea birds it’s been a great trip so far. Who knows what today will hold... Laters Karen

Hi, tis Emma blogging from Scarlet and currently sat in Whitehills which looks like a town out of a Tim Burton film (very cool). We’re getting ready for long trek all the way to Inverness and definately hoping to add to the long list of fun wildlife we have seen so far on this trip! So far there have been (lots of) Dolphins, some Puffins, many Jellyfish (in varying colours), a couple of seals and (possibly the coolest) a Whale!
An update of the happenings of our Pirate ship now... After a successful minor (and brief) invasion of Peterhead and the unfortunate loss of the Parrot we chose not to try to stage an occupation of the pontoon here in Whitecliffs but hoping to be able to take over in Inverness!
Will keep you posted!

The weather has been rough overnight and Cath has decided to go direct to Inverness. Yesterday we saw five whale sightings and it was brilliant. What a brillant time i am having, and i don’t want it to end, everyone on baord is great, especailly Kim as she adds abit of humour to the trip. Had a really brillant meal last night at the pub. Getting ready for a long day ahead as we are sailing direct to Inverness because of the weather, and can’t wait to see what in store.

what an experiance seeing a whale was, Me John and Kim heard a wierd crying noise and saw loads of seagulls attacking something black in the water but was distant tho.
John was like no its a dolphin but i told him its not a dolphin as they click and whistle to communicate to others i told him it was a whale sound but no one believed me at all then Kim all on her own saw a big black creature jump out of the sea and made a massive splash n told me n john then we saw it spurt out all its water n we all shouted its a whale its a whale then everyone turned over and there it was againg and again 4 fantastic time we saw the beautifull creature so now were on a 10 hour sail direct to inverness because if we stop over night in bucky we well be stuck there for the whole week as theye give very strong gales coming in but i will defo keep u guys all informed if we see plenty more of william the whale cya folks.

Ben Murphy ;-)
[07/07/09 09:00]

Of whales and pirate ships....

Bit of a lag in blogging recently, will endeavour to right this soon. We are now in the small village of Whitehills after a very exciting day yesterday but not down to the sailing. Sadly there was a lack of wind yesterday on leaving Peterhead and any wind that did appear was from exactly where we wanted to head to, so it was a bit of a frustrating time trying to get around Rattray Head. However, once clear of Rattray Head we were able to bear away a touch, get some sails out and actually get sailing - for a change the wind even behaved and kept going further to the north to allow us to get into Whitehills. It’s a lovely wee village, which will definately have to be one of our stops when I sail ound britain with my very understanding husband! Anyhow the exciting bit of yesterday were the 4 broaching whale sightings - how very cool. Add this to our numerous dolphin sightings and large numbers of sea birds it’s been a great trip so far. Who knows what today will hold... Laters Karen

Hi, tis Emma blogging from Scarlet and currently sat in Whitehills which looks like a town out of a Tim Burton film (very cool). We’re getting ready for long trek all the way to Inverness and definately hoping to add to the long list of fun wildlife we have seen so far on this trip! So far there have been (lots of) Dolphins, some Puffins, many Jellyfish (in varying colours), a couple of seals and (possibly the coolest) a Whale!
An update of the happenings of our Pirate ship now... After a successful minor (and brief) invasion of Peterhead and the unfortunate loss of the Parrot we chose not to try to stage an occupation of the pontoon here in Whitecliffs but hoping to be able to take over in Inverness!
Will keep you posted!

The weather has been rough overnight and Cath has decided to go direct to Inverness. Yesterday we saw five whale sightings and it was brilliant. What a brillant time i am having, and i don’t want it to end, everyone on baord is great, especailly Kim as she adds abit of humour to the trip. Had a really brillant meal last night at the pub. Getting ready for a long day ahead as we are sailing direct to Inverness because of the weather, and can’t wait to see what in store.

what an experiance seeing a whale was, Me John and Kim heard a wierd crying noise and saw loads of seagulls attacking something black in the water but was distant tho.
John was like no its a dolphin but i told him its not a dolphin as they click and whistle to communicate to others i told him it was a whale sound but no one believed me at all then Kim all on her own saw a big black creature jump out of the sea and made a massive splash n told me n john then we saw it spurt out all its water n we all shouted its a whale its a whale then everyone turned over and there it was againg and again 4 fantastic time we saw the beautifull creature so now were on a 10 hour sail direct to inverness because if we stop over night in bucky we well be stuck there for the whole week as theye give very strong gales coming in but i will defo keep u guys all informed if we see plenty more of william the whale cya folks.

Ben Murphy ;-)
[07/07/09 09:00]

Sunday, 28 June 2009

Day to stretch the legs

Nothing like cutting it fine - we cruised into Arbroath harbour yesterday evening with about 15 minutes to spare before they closed the gates! It was one of those frustrating wind days, it was on the nose the whole way out of the Forth - all 25 miles of it - then when we escaped the Forth it decided to die!! So unfortunately we had a large amount of motoring to do but hopefully the wind will return tomorrow and we can have a great sail to Stonehaven. Had a cracking day today along the cliffs towards Auchmithie - we were led to believe it was a 3 mile walk but definately not, on arriving at Auchmithie we saw a signpost to Arbroath 4 3/4 miles. Anyhow it was still a fab day, with sea stacks and cliffs, it was very cool to see the young gulls on the cliffs trying to fly for the first time. My in laws drove out to meet us at Auchmithie and without their help I think we would not have managed to ‘catch’ our dinner. Our dinner being Arbroath smokies - well we had to eat local and this was as local as we could get!! So it was a real Scottish feast for dinner, Arbroath smokies and salad, crackers with smokie pate and Tayside raspberries and strawberries with cream courtesy of my in laws again - thank you :-) It’s now only 1930, we’ve eaten dinner and all washed up - so that can only be one thing - Articulate time :-)
Karen out

First day of sailing yesterday - sailed all the way from Edinburgh to Arbroath. It wasn’t the best weather to sail and everyone was more or less quesy. In addition, we were against the time to get to the marina, as they were closing the gates at 8. When we finally arrived in Abroath, I bet everyone was happy to stand on the land. Today’s been absolutely fantastic day. We stayed in Abroath, which is a lovely, peacful town, and walked along the cliffs for about 5 miles to a nearby small town called Auchmithie. It was such an amazing view from the cliffs, absolutely fantastic! The weather was nice too, not too cold and we had a bit of a shinshine as well. One of the funniest parts of the day was when Caren, Cathy, Larvell and I saw the village we were heading and decided to walk back to the guys who were left behind to tell them that there’s no village and we need to walk all the way back. The look on their faces and moaning, it was hilarious! Once we got to the village the bus was just heading back, so we decieded to take the next one, which was supposed to be in an hour, and we headed to the beach. Of course the next bus wasn’t until two hours and we had to wait for another hour at the village. Finally back on the boat we had Abroath smokies - smoked fish - for tea and strawberries and cream for pudding. That was lovely! Now, it’s time to have a cup of tea and play games. Looking forward to tomorrow when we’re sailing to Stonehaven. -Maria

Me legs are stiff after after the 9 hour sail yesterday and the 9k walk today. but tomorows sail should be interesting if we manage to get some decent weather. seem to have gotten a knack recently for getting sunburnt, after i put some cream on yesterday and it chucked it down with rain then today didn’t bother as it was overcast and still got burnt. Also the smokies today acquired taste greasy and not that much taste, but not really a fish person well part from a friday fish supper :) -jonathan [28/06/09 20:00]

Friday, 26 June 2009

Tied up in knots

Still in Edinburgh but it’s been a great week here and we’ve had a tremendous couple of days with our new crew. It was good coming back to Scarlet on Tuesday, see how she enjoyed her weekend of rest and relaxation. A couple of days of tidying and maintenance and Scarlet was ready to meet her new crew for Leg 7. Chris, Jake, Jonathan, Larvell, Olly and Maria arrived yesterday afternoon and were soon making themselves at home. Chilled out evening before a long but tremendous day at the Royal Highland Show in Edinburgh - many thanks to Fiona Darwin and her team for organising tickets. What a cool day it was at the show. Weather was great, the Queen even came for the day, the only difficult bit of the day was actually deciding what to see!! So we went for some show jumping before lunch, then it had to be the Quack Commandoes - border collies herding ducks - how cool!!! Pretty impressive and something I’d never seen before although the ducks did look as if they’d maybe done this once or twice before. Managed to nip off and find out about honey bees and bee keeping. Possibly not the ideal pasttime for a voyage round Britain in a boat but would be so cool to have some bees making honey for me - magic!! Guess I might actually need to be in the country to tend to said bees as my husband, as lovely as he is, doesn’t particularly like bees and really don’t think he’d be up for doning the bee net and suit to collect the honey. And now to this evening’s activities - knots. Yes we have Jake with his two hands tied together attempting to get a knot out of the line and the funniest is Chris and Larvell tied together attempting to get apart - this has been the source of huge amusement for all spectators - and they’re determined not to be defeated - so they may well be here in the morning still attached!! Time will tell, until then Karen out.

jake here....
Todays bin full of first times... First time in edinburgh center, First time watchin an amphibious off road vehicle plowing through a duck pond whilst bein bombarded by blood thirsty scottish kiddies :-D First time in the presence of the old dear, and in this instance its the queen and not my nan hehe. And most imbaressing as it may be, first time defeated by a knot.. dont ask!!!!! We all enjoyed some lovely spag bol this evening, courtesy of ollie and larvell, followed by a mean mint Aero....... I must say though, i didnt realise how much id miss people back in stoke.... really really miss my gorgeous girlfriend, Letitia ;-(..... really miss my mum and the rest of the family.... and miss my dogs, Tilly and Alfie.....
Any ways, Bring on tomorrows sailing.....
cpt Jones out.

Wednesday, 17 June 2009

We're in Scotland

Well here we are in Edinburgh - doesn’t seem that long ago that Edinburgh seemed such a long way away!! It was magic sailing up along the coast, so close to the Bass Rock that we could pick out individual gannets instead of just what looked like a new sprinkling of snow from a distance. It really was quite special sailing up through the Forth, catching our first glimpses of Arthur’s Seat and Edinburgh Castle, past Cramond and then through the Forth rail and road bridges into Port Edgar. Was surprised at the number of seals we saw on the way in, lounging (or sunbathing when the sun appeared) on the floats of the channel markers, there were also quite a few puffins just chilling on the Forth, I guess on their way to or from the Isle of May. Having a chill out morning catching up on blogs and photos before heading into Edinburgh for the day. Until next leg Karen

hi michael here first blog and new to all this even though i was on the dover to london leg which was great. now the newcastle to edinburgh leg and when i was doing the first leg i so wanted to do another leg and i am so glad i was able to and ye this leg has been amazing. we set off from newcastle and sailed for 20 miles and i had a go at driving and that was amazing. we arrived at amble marine and we spent a night there and then in the morning we went to the local market which we brought a blow up pirate ship which is great fun, i also brought alot of sweets. we then left to sail to farn islands which was even more amazing than anything as me and captain kath desided to paddle across the to one of the islands and we saw all the birds and there nest and also as they are quite defensive they kept pecking me on the head, but it was still great and amazing. then we sailed another 20 mile to eyemouth which was quiet and little and was able to post my postcards. then we sailed 50 miles to edinburgh which was even more amazing as i got to helm most the way and sail past bass rock and saw all the irds on that rock which was great. now in edinburgh getting ready to walk around the place and adventure even more and add more videos to the presentation. i wish i could do another leg but i can not as they are all fully booked. bye scarlet oyster have a fun rest of the journey. [17/06/09 12:00]

Monday, 15 June 2009

Fabulous Farne Islands

What an amazing place the Farne Islands are. We arrived yesterday afternoon, after a bit of interesting anchorage. We had some advice from the locals on where to anchor which was hugely helpful. The ground was a tad rocky and covered with weed, so after the 2nd time bringing up the anchor along with half the sea bottom we finally got the anchor to hold. The water was so clear we could see the anchor and chain lying on the bottom - it was pretty cool, although we could see it wound round a few rather large boulders. Spent the rest of the evening just watching the world go by and the seals and all the birds. We also tried out a new game - yes we have progressed from Uno and Articulate to Tension now. Not sure if this will win the popularity contest against Uno or Articulate but it was still a good game all the same. Going back out to watch the wildlife later in the evening our anchorage, previously surrounded by rocks, was now surrounded by breaking waves - it was a pretty impressive sight as we sat well protected on our anchor. Lovely morning again here in the Farne Islands so looks like it will be another tremendous day - magic! Our two intrepid explorers (Cath and Michael) have gone ashore to check out the bird life, we have stayed on board to guard against any wayward pirates that may have lost their way and gathered round the Farne Islands.
Until later Karen

We arnchored of the Farne Islands and what a great place to be arnchored,the sights are just breath taking. We arrived here yesturday afternoon and after a friendly chat to the locals we sayed goodbye and they left allowing us to take in the peaceful tranquility of the islands. We watched the amazing wild life taking picture of the turns diving in to the water and swooping back out with fish in there beaks and also the rather nosey and interested seals. After enjoying dinner i washed the dishes and went out on deck to join the other who where all on there mobile’s talking a rather funny sight. With the kettle on the boil again we sat out on deck unable to tare our selfs away from the beautiful sights. After a game of tension we all went to bed. We awoke to the sunshine again this morning, i am now looking forward to another days sailin in the sun. Jodie x

Farne Islands are awesome. Lots of birds and seals. Seals been my favourite! There are such sticky becks, popping their heads up and checking out whats happening on the boat then swimming off again. It was a lovely evening and everyone was on deck checking out all the wild life and enjoying the evening. At one stage everyone on the boat was chatting on their mobiles to their loved ones at home explainig how great this place is. The sun is out shining again today and there is baby seals parking off around the place which is cool. On that note I’m of to chill on the deck. Lauren [15/06/09 09:00]

Saturday, 13 June 2009

First stop Amble

What a magic day - brilliant wind - well until it started changing direction far too frequently, but then we saw the puffins. The little birds are fantastic, mostly they are happy to paddle around as we sail past - it seems to take them so much effort to fly away. With their wee short wings and bright orange bills, they look tremendous in the air though. It turned out be a great wildlife spotting day, quite a few gannets, the odd guillemot and a fair few puffins. We also had a friendly seal come and say hello as we motored into the harbour. It’s been a tops day and we’ve still got cupcakes (wee nubs) to come - think we’ll be doing dinner back to front again this evening, with lasagne coming after the cup cakes. . Heading off for a short run to check out the area around Amble, back in time for cupcake tasting though! Laters Karen

Had an awesome day sailing, apart from suffering from a touch of see sickness in the gally whilst making lunch for everyone. Michael and myself tried our hand at crab fishing, however it didn’t last long before I left Michael alone to fight for a catch. Looking forward to Jodie’s chocolate and apple cup-cakes and a game of tension with all the crew. :) Peace Out. Jay

Today has been a really good days sailing,with the sun shining in the sky and the wind in the sails. Sun,Sea and sailing what more could you ask for. Have made chocolate apple cup cakes today which was a challenge in the galley cooker but they were a success with a thumbs up from all the crew. Looking forward to dinner lasagne yummy one of my favourites. Going to be playin Tension tonight a new game for the voyage so should be fun Jodie x [13/06/09 21:00]

Last main English stopover - for the next month we're in Scotland!

What another gorgeous day here in North Shields, light breeze and sunshine. Think we’re going to have a cracking sail to Amble this afternoon. Our new crew arrived yesterday afternoon, Jay and Michael returning from Leg 2 and our volunteer Lauren returning from Leg 4 with Jodie joining us on the journey for the first time. It was such a beautiful afternoon we went off to play cricket and football in the park - counting the young ducklings in the pond on the way home. There were 9 of them only 3 weeks old we were reliably informed. Normally ducks are quite graceful landing inthe water, but as we were coutning the ducklings, a male mallard literally just bounced into the water - I think he was in need of practicing a few landings, it didn’t look the most co-ordinated! Anyhow off to the village of Amble this afternoon, about 20 miles up the coast so really looking forward to the sail in the sunshine with a light breeze which might actually be from a direction other than the one we are going in - tremendous!! Laters Karen

The lads also got there butts whooped by the girls at a game of ‘Articulate’. Followed by a friendly game of UNO.

Saturday 12th June
Arrived back on Scarlet yesterday afternoon. Was met by the lovely Simon at Newcastle train station. Where I also met Michael and Jay. Then we headed to the marina. It was great to see the 2 crazy sea cats again (Cath and Karen). Jodie had arrived early and was on board already. We had a nice time playing cricket and kick ball at the park. Followed by a few cheeky games of Articulate. My Articulate skills have not improved since leg 4. I personally blame Simon for this due to Simon being the rules nazi and everything had to be played by the instruction booklet. What happened to our Scarlet rules?????? Looking forward to the next few days of sailing and getting to know Michael, Jay and Jodie. Lauren

Saturday 12th June
Arrived yesturday after a 3 hour journey. I meet Simon,Cath and Karen for the first time after saying my goodbyes to my mum and step dad(and of course Zak) i got on board and started gettin to know cath and Karen both of which of first impressions where really nice.When the rest of the crew(Micheal,Jay and Lauren) arrivied later about five we sayed our hello”s and headed to the park for sum fun before cuming back and having yummy chicken wraps made by the boys.I woke up early this morning and am now ready and looking forward to a days sailing and getting to know everybody better. Jodie x

Sunday, 7 June 2009

Fun day in Scarborough

An unplanned extra day in Scarborough - engine troubles again!! On our way into Scarborough yesterday evening we noticed the water seperator filter was full of water and not diesel!! The same issue we had on our way into Sheerness all those weeks back, here was us hoping we had solved the problem. Cath duly drained the water, filled the filter with diesel and we motored on into Scarborough. However, on changing said fuel filter in Scarborough a rather crucial component (a wee screw that actually stops the diesel spurting out of another filter) sheared off!! Being a weekend in Scarborough no one was available to help us out of our predicament so here we are having spent a lovely chilled out day in Scarborough. It’s a very pleasant pretty town, great beach and tremendous ice cream shop - old retro style ice cream shop with big tall ice cream sundaes - needless to say we had to sample the delights so now feeling like a round pork pie!! Anyhow all grand on the good ship Scarlet this Sunday evening. Laters Karen

Shame about the engine issue as it looks as though we will now miss the quaint town of Whitby and have to head staright for Hartlepool instead.Never mind, we’ve had a great time exploring Scarborough and for Cath and Karen the challenge will be on to find a nicer ice cream than that from the Harbour Bar.Judging by how quickly their’s went down,Brad,Tim and Tom seemed to enjoy them too!Rounded off back at the boat by my first win at Uno-hopefully one of many.Bye for now.Dave

Today the weather was better. We explored Scarborough, went around the town and walked up towards the castle. views of the town and sea were really good tom.

My what a lovely day we have had. It’s been sunny and there is no better way to spend a sunny day but to go and explore. And thats just what we did. Now dinners in the oven and should be rather tasty. Well thats all for now laters every1 Tim [07/06/09 18:00]

Friday, 5 June 2009

Getting ready to depart Hull

Had a fab day off yesterday - Cath and I went to York for the day, neither of us having been there before. It was brilliant and we both thought York is such an amazing city / town. It was lovely to be ashore for a whole day but it’s great to back again getting ready for our next leg up to Newcastle - our last main stopover in England. I can’t believe we’ll soon be in Scotland. The time has gone so quickly, it seems just yesterday that we left Cowes in the glorious sunshine. Thankfully the sun has come back to shine on us again, all week in Hull we have had cracking weather, it’s been brill.
Our new crew have arrived and are settling in - in fact making the teas and coffees - always a bonus! Heading over to the yacht club this evening for pizza and then early start - what’s new - in the morning off to Scarborough.
Laters Karen

Got a train from london to hull and arived at around 12:30, we got aboard the boat and was shown around and was given a safety brief. Tomorrow we are sailing to Scarborough. Should be fun.

Ahoy Maties
Travelled up to Hull and boarded my new home for a few days. setteled in said hi to karen who i did round the island with last year with sail4cancer. Getting on well with everyone and really looking forard to starting tomorrow morning (can’t wait)!!


Sunny weather so nice train journey over from Leeds as I start my leg of this incredible voyage .As someone who has worked in Hull for many years it is interesting to see it from the harbour.All the guys settling in well and chilling out prior to the long haul to Scarborough tomorrow so fish and chips might be the order of the day when we dock as there could be a few hungry mouths to feed and after that I will take them to the harbour bar for some delicious home made ice creams (no not the sort of bar you were probably thinking of!)
Adios for now.
[05/06/09 18:00]

Sunday, 31 May 2009

100 mile day blog

Saturday 30th

Woken by a clattering at 5 0 clock am! (not good) I opened my eyes and through the cubbyhole window directly above me I saw, first a rope, then a flip flop and someone’s foot! I got up cause I couldn’t sleep with everyone clambering about on deck. Then the boat started tipping at an angle a bit like what felt like 90 degrees! I was pinned to the side of the boat and couldn’t move. Someone, I can;t remember who, very kindly made me a Bacoln roll for brecki. I got a bit cold so with a huge huge struggle,as still pinned to the side, about an hour later, with help, I clambered up the ladder to the deck. The whole thing was a little bit scary to me but really exciting, fun and very very very cool. I’d deff do it again! weyyyyyyy! We moored at 12;45 in Lowesloft. We had soup for lunch, I had chicken mmm. Then Iwent to have a shower. That was like a small wet room,cool.

We, all the 7 of us went for a walk along the prom, had a ice cream and flew the kite. That was good fun. Tonight we have being invited to dinner at the harbour. I had a jacket potato with cheese and some salad, whilst listening to the band start up. There were disco lights and we all went up for a dance. It was 60’s music, my favorite. We all had great fun. Fab Stuff!!! some local people to the club had dressed up in real 60’s gear. There were lots of great outfits and some one was dressed as Elvis Presley!!!!!!! It was very cool. Silly but fun at the same time. I really enjoyed it! We had to leave half way through as we have to get up at 5;00 am again and are sailing all day so we need our sleep. But we had a great night . My best night yet Lizzy.D

Sunday 31st

Had a awesome day today. We sailed 100miles! Very impressed with myself there was no vomiting over the deck from sea sickness today, unlike yesterday.......oh what fun I had yesterday when we were sailing. I discovered very early on that I DO get sea sickness and that when behind the wheel my driving is like a mad woman’s knitting!..........Lauren........

100 miles and 13.5hrs later we arrived today in Grimsby. What a fantastic day! The conditions couldn’t have been better - blue sky, loads of sunshine (we’re all slapping on the factor 50!) and quite a bit of wind. The 2 consecutive 5am starts were taking their toll and I found myself drifting off to sleep lying on the deck, but what a sight to wake up to - the shimmering deep blue sea (mostly it’s been a less attractive brown colour!) and no land in sight. Looking forward to exploring the sights of Grimsby tomorrow. Annelise

Today, as we sailed past the wash, we were completely out of sight of the land. This was the first time that I’ve done this, and I can see how it would be either an unnerving experience or a calming one. For me it was the latter. Surrounded by the constantly shifting and perpetually chaotic landscape of the sea was completely mesmerizing. I often go to the beach to read, every now and then looking up at the sea; today I tried to read at one point and would find myself reading one or two pages, and then staring at the sea for I don’t know how long, before realising that I had completely forgotten about my book. With no landmarks, detatched from everything but the boat and her crew, perceptions of time and space seem to dissolve, hours pass in minutes and vice versa. Any objects that we did come across took on a very mysterious quality, appearing on the horizon as indistinct shapes, and gradually taking on form as they approach, with their silence and stillness heightened by the lack of any activity around them. The one thing we saw for most of the day, other than the odd container ship in the distance and a couple of passing gannets, was an unmanned meteorological tower If we were passing it on land it would have come and gone before we’d even noticed it, but from the boat it was a brooding and eternally patient obelisk that seemed to have been left by some unknown hand for some unknown reason. Although, having said that, it was probably left by meteorologists, for meteorological reasons. Luke

Friday, 29 May 2009

Leg 4 - Day 2 back in Walton Backwaters

New crew, new day - it’s been excellent. Back in the same wee anchorage we stayed at in Walton Backwaters - well it was so nice we thought we should introduce our new crew to it! We did have intentions earlier of rowing ashore to the beach - unfortunately it was rather breezy and with a pretty hefty tide running in the same direction as the wind - out to sea - we thought better of it so our paddle will have to wait until another day. Until then I will sit and listen to the wind, watch the sun set and play some more Articulate.
Laters Karen

I arrived in Ipswich yesterday at about 3 o clock (not sure exact time) at the harbour to find Frank and a few others who told me that the Scarlet Oyster had just gone out for a sail and would be coming in any minute.
In came Scarlet,WOW! What a magnificent boat!!!!!! Amazing, but not Scarlet like I expected but a beautiful Ellen MacArthur Trust blue_ still very cool. Mum, Dad and I Got shown around Scarlet inside and explained all my complications of medics over a cup of tea.
I was interviewed and filmed by several different people whilst on the boat and then after that BBQ had been aranged for us.Yum! Climbing off the boat , People wanted autographs and then walking up towards the BBQ, amazing atmosphere it felt a bit like star-dem!!!


had a late night on wednesday still packing for the trip as i’ve had a very busy week because i had to hand in all my college work for it to get marked and feedback to be given. The next morning me, my mother and grandmother woke up at 7 am we got ready and left the house around 9:30, i was map reading while my mum was driving, it was a 4 hour drive from Nottingham to Ipswich we finally arrived at about 14:00 and saw Frank and Simon had a little chit chat, frank invited my mum and gran to a BBQ that started about 18:30. we then walked back to the other ends of the doc and met Lizzy and her parents and then i saw Dan. we then had a walk to the boat Scarlet Oyster, it felt good to be back on her, it brought back some memories from previous trips, it was also sad news to hear that the owner of Scarlet Oyster passed away he was a great guy and very friendly.

At about 17:40 to 18:20 we had lots of different people coming on and off the Boat they were news crew and people from the local papers we got lots of pictures taken and lots of questions asked about ourself and the trips, after that the BBQ had stated so we began to walk up as a group on our way up there some people came and asked for the crews autographs, made us feel like we were celebrities and all the cameras and film crew contributed towards that feeling as well. When we got to the BBQ we had a look at the food, some of the food i had never heard of before, i had a spicy chicken cob which was nice. after the BBQ we then headed down to the boat there we lots of people crowded round it and more people asked us questions, have you ever been before?, do you like it?, would you ever of started sailing if the trust was here?, when everyone had left it was getting on for 21:30 so we had a little time for us all to get to know each other better and had a little safety brief. About 22:10 we then came inside and played some games we played articulate which i had never played before, after few games we all headed to bed.

In the morning at 7:40 i woke up and had a shower we was going to set sail at 11:00 but we had a problem with the boat as a seal in the toilet was broken so a guy had to come and repair it. Some of us went round the new sailing shop that had opened because down at Dover on another leg a fender was popped because it was getting slammed against a big boat, we then went to Tesco in Simons nice Volvo we went there to get a few things for the boat. when we got back to the boat we then had a safety brief and then set off we did a bit of sailing down to Walton Backwaters, we then was getting ready to get off the boat and go to the shore but the wind and current of the water was to strong so we didn’t do that instead we listened to music and was talking till dinner time, we had chicken wraps which was very nice and now I’m writing this.


One of the things that I’ve been very pleasantly surprised by so far is the number of people who seem to have taken an interest in the trip, from the various media outlets to local people, such as the man who came down this morning to offer us some soft plastic balls as a form of stress relievers, and also to play us a tune on his accordian as we left the marina this morning.
The creek we’re spending the might in is beautiful, all soft sand and gentle waves, a brilliant frame for the particularly picturesque sunset we had tonight.

Wednesday, 27 May 2009

FInal blog from Leg 3

Bradwell . Bradwell was wicked i loved it we went archery which i managed to get the arrow right over the hill =] and we also did high ropes which was awesome very frightening but worth it in the end =]. We also went up the mast at bradwell which was cool and very fun i was really high we could see everything =] . We also went on the power boats which were very very good we went at 25 knots and we went to mercy island and got an ice cream Yumm!. Yesterday we finished our adventure and got to ipswich is very nice there was lots of people watching us come in and clapped us. They had put on a bbq and gave out free ice cream Mmmmm. We all felt like celebrities. =] =].


yesterday was exciting day with a lazy start to the day we set sail about 1:30 and motored up to ipswich and all of a sudden on the last day Steffi found a love for helming so we took it in turn sailing the the river. this was very exciting because we have a brand new oyster 82 and oyster 65 to come meet with us a start and a convoy with us. After some skill full helming by Steffi to get us in line and close to the other boats i took over and steered us under the bridge.

the 6 days sailing has been great. when i arrived first at London i unpacked and met all of the crew. on the friday we set sail down the river Thames and went down to sheerness and stayed there for the rest of the night playing uno. on saturday we sailed up to Bradwell and spent 2 days there. the guys also done a high rope which looked fun and they went up the mast. on the sunday we went on a rib ride to Mercy island and got some swiss chocolate ice cream. when we got back to Bradwell we done some archery and the best i got was a red which is very good but not the best, the best is yellow. on monday we set sail down to the creek and spent the night anchored up playing uno. i wasn’t feeling to good on the sail but i had a 1hr sleep. yesterday i sailed to ipswich and when we got there, there was lots of people from skandia and it felt like that we were celebrities. they also set up a bbq for us and they had a yacht simulator. today i am going home at 3oclock and i can not wait to see my mum, dad and brother. sustainability- sustainability is recycling and turning things off to save electricity and i did very good at it. i did most of the sustainability on the last 6 days.


Tuesday, 26 May 2009

Night at anchor at Walton Blackwater

What a really pretty part of the country we are in at the moment. I’ve never been here before but there are so many little creeks to explore and investigate that I will definitely have to come back here and check them out in the future – hopefully on board a wee boat called Gannet – if my mum and dad would agree?! First night at anchor on the trip – tremendous to wake up in a wee channel with a seal bobbing up next to us. Unfortunately, as is always the way, there was no camera handy, well it was 0700 in the morning and by the time we had retrieved camera the crafty seal had swum away!! We’ve got a few hours at anchor until we are able to leave the creek so the crew are cracking on with the Leg 3 video, our presentation for the hospital visit tomorrow and of course the Uno cards have come out!! Off to Ipswich this afternoon, until then. Laters Karen

Well I think im going to start of were Karen did it is absolutely amazing but the weather is not great but spirits aree very high. we had a very nice breakfast cooked by dan and dan now we are waiting to move on and get to Ipswich. Uno is the only game  lol. james out

Soo we had a awesome sail out of the Thames with some nice wind and a steady pace of about 9 knots. DanDan auto helm (me) helmed all the way which I found really fun. After a well deserved sleep we headed to Bradwell (yipieeeee) we arrived about midday and just chillaxed on the boat. We where all getting ready for some highropes ,so we decided we would all go up the mast for some ‘practice’ but really it was for a bit of fun . Shortly after we made our way to the high ropes which I was very very very excited about, after a few leaps of faith and some epic climbing we all headed back to the boat for the evening. The next morning we where ment to be dinghy sailing but there was no wind, what a bummer but instead we went POWERBOATING in Bradwell’s ribs we had a nice rag around of the boat in the river then went over to Mersea so a ice cream Mmmmmmmmm. We also played a bit of archery and I sat watching the topper national squad arrive as I plotted to steal there full kitted out toppers . After are 2 days at bradwell we headed up to Walton on the naze to anchor for the night on the way we saw a 29er which was moving a lot faster then us but was awesome to watch. That brings us to now rain, thunder and lightning and, a hot chocolate waiting to sail (motor) to Ipswich. x
Dan (wee)
We sailed out of bradwell yesterday. And we were heading for the Wolton Channel it was quite windy but ok weather. When we got closer to Wolton Channel The weather picked up a bit and got more and more windy and started to rain, So not so good weather but was still cool =]. We anchored up at the Wolton Channel which was Ok, And all the crew had a game of articulate which was awesome because the girls won =] =] Soon we will be motoring to Ipswich not so good weather to sail but will still be fun =]

Monday, 25 May 2009

Chilling day ar Bradwell

Been a while since our last crew blog - apologies all, have had some internet issues - possibly both internet and user error, but hopefully these are sorting themselves out slowly. Simon, Dan and myself collected o
Our new crew (James (Jim-bob), Jamie (Wee Man), Steffi and Dan (Wee Dan)) on Thursday - great combination of names to have all on one boat - and with skipper and mate of Cath and Karen and our two volunteers of Dan M (Big Dan / Monkey) and Carolyn I wasn’t surprised when we started to get confused! Dinner over on Thursday and Uno came out - I do wonder how many legs the cards can take?
Chris Livett joined us again for the trip down the Thames to Sheerness, sadly there was not too much sailing done due to a shortage of wind but at least it was a lovely sunny way to start the leg off with :-)
A very early start on Saturday morning - slightly earlier than planned as the boat we had rafted up next too was off then - just meant we got to Bradwell earlier and got to sort things out before the high ropes course in the evening!!! Think this pleased Wee Dan in particular who was hugely excited about coming to Bradwell.
Many laughs on the high ropes course - with some huge leaps especially from James who would not be defeated - and was not either on the 2nd attempt!!!
Much to everyone’s disappointment a huge lack of wind (why couldn’t we have harvested some of the wind we had blowing a hooley 2 weeks ago?) meant no dinghy sailing (sorry Sarah for having to pack all Dan’s dinghy stuff for him not to use it!), so it was out in the ribs for a bit of a blast and trip to Mersey Island for ice creams. Most interesting on the pier too - so many people crabbing - I have never been crabbing and I was so surprised at how many crabs people had caught and wondered what they did with them (they were after all a tad small for eating!). So I have since been informed that they generally get thrown back in - Im guessing the crabs are now quite wise to this and are quite happy to eat what people drop down on lines, get brought to the surface for some sunlight and then dropped back down to the depths - only for it all to start again - I think they’re pretty well fed! Wwe ll we’re all off to shoot some arrows now so until next time. Laters Karen

Today has been a brill day we had to get up at 8 o’clock to go on the ribs ready for half 9 The ribs were real good fun we went real fast at 25 knots which was really fast and dan james and Cath had to hold on really tight as i was steering =] we stopped of at mercy island and we all got an ice cream and a cafe called black pearl strawberry was the best =P after we came back to Bradwell and caroline and i made sandwhiches for the rest of the crew we had cheese,ham,chicken,lettice,tomato and salami a bit of a wierd combination a little while after me and jamie played a game of uno and then Cath joined us and we all played frustration. i won =] a short while after dan, wee dan, james,and jamie and i went on to do archery which was pretty cool it was a real good laugh Big Dan and Wee Dan and James all got the bulls eye. we are all now back in the boa and all helping out to clean the boat Soon we are going to play some outdoor games like football cricket and parachuting fun Stuff =] Steffi

today has been absolutely amazing . the weather is great the ribs were great the archery was great its been a great day. the ribs got up to 25 knots and i drove. we got ice cream yum :) i had a good night sleep last night and a nap today it was nice :):):) James

Wednesday, 20 May 2009

Chilling in London

Just back into the swing of things after a couple of days off in London - what a mad week it's been! With all the worries of the weather, water in the fuel tanks, getting to the bridge on time it's been tremendous to have a couple of days with friends and family off the boat - but now very glad to be back and getting the boat ready for the arrival of our new crew tomorrow and the start of Leg 3.

After moving the boat back to St. Katharine Docks on Saturday morning, after stopping London traffic for the 2nd time that week raising Tower Bridge, it's been very quiet on the boat - and also much less bumpy than when we were alongside HMS Belfast. Although walking across Tower Bridge last night, still can't quite believe we were moored up alongside HMS Belfast - pretty cool place really.

Had a great weekend, listening to Ellen's talk, going out and meeting friends, and I even played some Uno!! And I won!! I don't think my husband is a fan now though!

Cath and I were back on the boat again yesterday getting Scarlet ready for the start of Leg 3. Was a good day and sat on the boat last night, just the two of us was odd - lovely to have time to chat to each other and catch up though. Very restful sleep and now back to updating blogs and still having to clean our fuel tanks!! Guess should be off to get that started.

looking forward to meeting all our leg 3 crew tomorrow - see you then. Will be another fab trip!
Until then

Thursday, 14 May 2009

Thames Travel

What a week it’s been. It’s been a tops week and it’s amazing to be here in London. The windy weather of Dover seems so long ago. Sorry about lack of blogs but with the wind blowing a hooley from Dover, our delightful engine troubles it’s all been a tad hectic. It really was a windy and bumpy ride up from Dover, pleased when Sheerness came into to site only for our engine to fail so close to picking up our mooring buoy L So we’re all very pleased to be here but we had a cracking sail yesterday up the Thames and spent the night over looked by Canary Wharf – pretty smart. So now we’re moored up alongside HMS Belfast being bounced around (again!) by all the wash from the passing ferries (never realised so much traffic on the Thames). What a view from our wee boat – tremendous!
Laters Karen

It has been incredible coming up the Thames with Ellen, all the camera crews and interviewers, we felt like celebrities. But what an experience to take part in with the amazing sights of London.

Today has been a day of experiences! So much fun! Starting the morning early at 6.30 to clean down the boat for the big day. Ellen, Emily, and Maxine soon joined us in the dock for the final stretch down the Thames. Every one on board was so excited, we where going to sail under tower bridge. After a short sail up to the bridge and HMS Belfast we approached the bridge about 11am the crowds started to crowd on the bridge as it opened for us to pass through. Every one was at the bow with Ellen and Emily was at the helm, as we approached HMS Belfast all the parents waved from the boat as we dropped our main sail and readied the fenders so we could moor next to HMS Belfast. After saying hello to all the parents we swiftly dashed off to the London eye for a ride on the wheel J, it was brilliant. So hear we are now bumping around next to HMS Belfast chilling out for the evening J x
Dan Goulding.

Dover seems a long time away, sitting here now in London in the Skippers chair, with a Queen song ‘Don’t stop me now’ being sung by Dan, Michael and Jay, Karen & Cath – epic, I don’t think I could subject them to my backing singing so I will carry on with blogging…a great day yesterday and today sailing up the Thames into the heart of London with camera crew from ITV and BBC in ribs either side of the great Scarlet Oyster. Great also to have Emily and Maxine on board with Ellen Macarthur.
Wow – what a crew!
London Eye in the afternoon for us too – what a view of our beautiful capital city!
Don’t stop me now! – sorry back to blogging - Jay cooked the best chicken stir fry with a sweet and sour sauce this side of the Thames (Mrs Collins lives North of the Thames!) and Dan is getting prepared for his appearance on Friday’s TV.
Outside London Bridge looks totally awesome at night with lights on.
Time to turn in after another full day.
Thanks again to EMT for making this possible for everyone….
Kind regards