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As a recent joiner to this network, I introduced myself as an avid boater, which I am. Most of my boating over the last 40 years has been on numerous mobo’s (all hired), but in my teens I did enjoy a brief foray into sailing (all offshore), but that was 30 years ago. So what possessed me to think that it would be a good idea to by a sailboat? In this case, my newly acquired Pegasus 800, which my wife and I have renamed ‘Sovereign Grace’. Now, your initial response might be, well why not! Surely it's like riding a bike; you've done it before, it will all come back to you? But there's something else here I have to keep in mind; I'm not as young as I used to be! This fact was certainly not lost on my wife, who decided to buy me a little present to go with my new acquisition, a cap, with the words ‘Knackered Sailor’ embossed on the front. I love her dearly! The truth is, that she’s right, not because I'm now 46 and on at least the third of my mid life crises, but that, for the last 5 years I have suffered with M.E. or as some would know it, Chronic Fatigue Syndrome. Ah, but things don't stop there either, because my wife, and first mate in this new hobby; well, she has Osteoarthritis. But neither of us are the type to let these things get the better of us; adventure / foolhardiness are in our DNA. Even so; what you are going to read here, is possibly not the usual kind of we went here and there and back again, but a blog from two people who probably should have thought more seriously about buying a mobo, who instead, despite the difficulties, are going to learn to sail again. So; here we go… DAY ONE… Well, I've kitted her out as best as I know how, and I have the reassurance of a thorough survey and professional engine test to be confident that the water will stay on the outside, and if all else fails, we can at least motor home. But here is where we learn to sail again; or at least we would have done if it had actually been windy. Even so; not to be deterred, we bravely uncovered the sails, made sure all the lines were attached where I could remember they should be attached, started the engine, and set off to begin our new shared hobby. The plan was simple, motor down to Somerleyton from St Olaves, trusting that this would give me better control through the swing bridge, and then to hoist the sails and see if we could sail the rest of the way to Oulton Broad and back. Well, the plan to motor to Somerleyton proved wise, as we did have to wait for it to open, but the plan to then sail to and from Oulton Broad didn’t quite work out. For sure, we were not the only sailors who were finding the lack of wind a problem, and this was of some comfort to me, that it wasn't simply me doing it all wrong; but the engine never got switched off. But, we did bravely hoist the sails nonetheless, and for those brief moments when the wind did pick up, the boat did move forward; which I will call a success, and consider proof, that this sailing lark is maybe like riding a bike after all, something you never forget. Having managed to return to St Olaves, where we started the day, not having sunk, capsized, or crashed into the dock whilst trying to moor up again, I will count day 1 as a great success. Visiting friends tomorrow, so day two will be the day after. Thanks for reading so far.
Well - we got back from two weeks on Song of Freedom about two and a half weeks ago - but it has been so full-on you wouldn't believe it! But, firstly a big thank you to Freedom Boats, the boat was fab, and they were very lovely to us indeed.. a proper family firm.. Two whole weeks was utter bliss, i don't think i've had a proper two week holiday in years - i honestly think i went native and came away with a slight "Narfolk" accent! Secondly, the southern broads - love love love them! Loved being able to boat into Norwich, loved Beccles and Loddon, loved every river - each one was so different. We decided we could quite happily spend a month or so pottering around, investigating all the nooks and crannies of each town/river/village... If i get some time i will try to write up our holiday tales; but plz don't hold your breath as i've just started a new job for which i need to do do some of the most gruelling training... The OH has a new job too but he's not doing a complete career change - i'm ....... learning to be a london double-decker bus driver!! It's hard work! (Anyone else done bus driving?) all!