Posted by: fiddlehead | March 14, 2008

“I never miss” (a yachting story)

I was asked about any interesting travels stories relating to yachts or yachting.
I have a few. I have never had my own boat but since people know i’m adventurous, i do get asked to go along on journeys and one of my longest ones was back in ’92 when I was attempting to travel around the world without flying.

I met an Australian skipper and owner of a 16 meter ketch named “Olly”ketch.jpg

He had built the boat himself and of course knew every inch of it well. We met in Singapore and agreed to travel together to western Australia. No timetable, no hurry, no worries. (hopefully)

It was an awesome trip with stops at many small islands always in search of the uninhabited island surrounded by the best coral and snorkeling sites.island But, I don’t want to get ahead of myself here. The best story from the whole 42 day sailing adventure took place on or about day 3.

We were sailing along and had just crossed the equator, maybe the day before, I am not sure exactly. It was quite hot of course. So, I asked the skipper if he had away of cooling off that I didn’t know about as he was very experienced (I hoped) sailing in the tropics.

He said: “Sure, just go to the back and make sure the ladder is down, then go up to the bowsprit and just dive in.” “But, keep in mind that we are moving and after you surface, you should head back to the boat and grab the ladder in the back.”
So, i did just that and after staring at the sea and the peacefulness of the endless horizon unbroken by land or even cloud, I dove in! Sure enough when i surfaced the boat was already about half-way past me and i had to swim hard and fast to just reach the ladder in the back of the boat.

I hung there for a short while, enjoying the coolness of the water, and the shade that the boat gave when all of a sudden, I felt a bump on my stomach and looked down to see a hand come up and grab the rung below the one i was holding! Following the hand was the skipper, Ollie.

As there were only the 2 of us aboard for the trip, I said to him: “Who the fuch is driving the boat?” He smiled and said: “I never miss”!

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