Part B (part deux) Training

Gosport - 29/03 to 05/04 2009 

In place of a training account for this week (as it was my second lot of Part B Training in the hope of having some wind second time around) I have an offering of a different nature.  This week we had such a great mix of characters and such a lot of fun (while still learning - of course) that I felt compelled to write something fun to reflect it. Many of the references below will mean nothing to those that weren't there but I'm hoping overall it will give a flavour of some of the events of the week and convey the fantastic team spirit that filled every minute of every day.  So here is my homage to my Skipper, First mate and fellow Crew members of my Part B (part deux) training!

Ode to Part B (part deux) Training Week

Clarence Dock Marina is the setting for this tale                                                                                                                  Of highs, of lows, of joys and woes                                                                                                                                     An adventure to regale                                                                                                                                                       A training team of new recruits                                                                                                                                           All decked out in gloves and boots                                                                                                                                       And a Skipper we should all salute                                                                                                                                       Who'll try and teach us how to sail!                                   

Oli was our Skipper's name – and he barely looked of age                                                                                                      He's calm and “cool” and so laid back                                                                                                                                  You'd never see him in a rage                                                                                                                                             His task – to teach to sail the seas                                                                                                                                      His commands to crew were clear “indeed”                                                                                                                         When we got it right he called it “Sweet”                                                                                                                            And declared them “Happy Days”                            

His right-hand man was Eero and a great first-mate was he                                                                                                  He shared his sailing knowledge                                                                                                                                          While he sipped his Red Bush tea                                                                                                                                        He's tactical and so precise                                                                                                                                                 And sailed around the world - now twice!                                                                                                                             And he made sure that we did it right                                                                                                                                  So an 'Eero's Hero' we could be     

Chris, a fellow girlie and a sailor of some note                                                                                                                     She understands the lingo too                                                                                                                                             And has her own sail boat                                                                                                                                                   Patiently she'd tell me how                                                                                                                                                  To call the sail-trim from the bow                                                                                                                                       She's firm but fair and never loud                                                                                                                                        You'd vote to have her on your boat!

Now onto Gentle John and our only Scot was he                                                                                                                    We saw no signs of Scottish traits                                                                                                                                       He was generous with the tea!                                                                                                                                            He helmed us to a winning race                                                                                                                                           And helped us keep our sail flakes straight                                                                                                                          At everything was really great                                                                                                                                             And he did it all with glee.

A Sailing 'Vet' called Detlef is our next 'Germanic' friend                                                                                                        And although he was quite bossy                                                                                                                                         He never really did offend                                                                                                                                                   The other boats he helped us beat                                                                                                                                       By shouting “Vait with the staysail sheet!”                                                                                                                          And his Easter Egg he shared (how Sweet)                                                                                                                           And we loved him in the end.

Henman, Giles Henman they call him, - he's our own James Bond in training                                                                         Tall and dark, the action man                                                                                                                                             But never when it's raining!                                                                                                                                                He climbed the pole and spiked the sheet                                                                                                                            Conquered the mast – over eighty feet!                                                                                                                               He sounds quite tough but looks quite sweet                                                                                                                        He's our fair-weather 'Double O sailing'!

Felicity, a doctor, had been a dinghy sailing child                                                                                                                 But when mooring up on Tuesday                                                                                                                                        She got a bow-line in the eye!                                                                                                                                             Her spinny-trim was still text-book                                                                                                                                      And she took the helm like Captain Cook                                                                                                                             (With an eye-patch she'd have been more Hook)                                                                                                                  A fierce competitor she was, Aye, aye!

Terribly well-spoken Wade – a businessman that was clear                                                                                                    He kept The City functioning                                                                                                                                              Through the Blackberry on his ear                                                                                                                                       He took the helm with grinning glee                                                                                                                                    Except at four – when he stopped for tea                                                                                                                             And how he 'lost a day!' - he just couldn't see                                                                                                                       How we laughed 'til we cried with tears!

Sea-dog Rob (he knew his stuff) turned out to be our minder                                                                                                He encouraged those that didn't know                                                                                                                                 You couldn't meet a man who's kinder                                                                                                                                  When witnessing a huge “to-do”                                                                                                                                         Rob stepped in (the air turned blue!)                                                                                                                                   But he kept the peace with his fab beef stew                                                                                                                       And was a demon on the grinder!

Crew-mate Steve, an all-round guy (a watch-leader without fail)                                                                                           Although, when he ran the Spinnaker drill                                                                                                                            He forgot to attach the sail!                                                                                                                                               He tested my Colregs and made me think                                                                                                                            And led us into mad high-jinx                                                                                                                                             But always helped out at the Galley sink                                                                                                                               And amused with impressions and tales!

So, Part B part deux, we came to sail and the wind we came to seek                                                                                     We gybed the Spinny pole so much                                                                                                                                      We could do it in our sleep                                                                                                                                                  Skipper and Mate taught their tricks                                                                                                                                   In the races we became quite slick                                                                                                                                      We laughed all week (thought my sides would split)                                                                                                              A truly awesome week!