A day in the life of the Dinghy Boys

Steve Powell
Mon 8 Dec 2008 18:53
Dear readership,

The time has finally come for the ‘Dinghy Boys’ to find some spare time (from their hectic schedule) to write today’s blog. We thought we would do this slightly differently and give you our perspective to a day on board UHURU for us...

Sunday 7th December – Crews day of rest?!?

00.01 am – Demo has 2 more hours of watch left, he actually made his shift on time tonight as he didn’t have a movie and a soft Steve as an excuse to start late – some things never change! Buzz is in bed with 4 hours of sleep left before his shift starts – great news especially as he has nicked demo’s pillow and in fact the whole bed...

2 am – Demo clocks off his watch and does the mandatory log (ships log!) before coming to bed to try and move Buzz on to his side of the exceedingly large double bed, that we are sharing! At the same time, he tries to recapture his pillow with out waking Buzz and not getting his hair caught in the fan – now the human radiator will get revenge on Buzz..

3.45 am – Buzz alarm goes off to wake him for the start of his 4 hour shift – I thought this was going to be a holiday?! It was a quick get dressed, shorts and t-shirt and sunnies, ready for the spectacular 6 am sunrise. He makes a coffee and go up on deck to find out what his mileage challenge is from Steve – Drive Drive Drive for the finish line...

5.45 am – Been a busy morning thus far, Buzz and Peter have had a good debate on Rugby and old London clubs and now its time to enter the ’bear pit’ to wake Daffid Budda (Dawson) up,  as he needs to start his shift with Buzz at 6 am. The next 15 minutes are spent by Daffid in the ladies room powdering his nose and putting on his cooking oil ready for sunrise and the start of the daily tanning session sat on his aft quarter throne.

6 am Peter is relived and does a quick log before going to cuddle up with Steve in the master en-suite, it must be luxurious back there as Peter seems to spend a long time in there...

7am Buzz and Dawson are close to choosing the XV for the Lions 09 tour to South Africa although we are still yet to agree on the Captain and if all the backs will be Welsh – of course being talented people, we are focusing on sailing the boat at the same time 100%

7.30 am – Captain bursts on to the deck and informs us, big red is going up – all are woken to help in performing this morning ritual

8 am – Big Red (MK 2.5) is up and flying with out a hitch – the morning bets have been taken on how long she will last in the moderate breeze (15-18 knots)

9am – Time for breakfast – most are sticking to their healthy regimes on board, Steve, Cracking (Hugh – called this after his enjoyment of burning himself daily) and Buzz opt for a a killer omelette (cheese and ham) with about 10 eggs. We have see a couple of boats (this is rare out here), 1st time in a couple of days – we have one in the distance on both port and starboard side as will as one on the horizon on the bow.

11 am – Big Red has a small hernia – time for her to come down and put those little dinghy brats down below in the sauna to mend her once again – time for Top Gun on the TV as motivation..

12.30 am Dinghy boys complete the minor operation  and big red is back up and running – they should have taken slightly more time and bothered to stitch the duck tape, before long its flapping – doh! But it stays up as there is competition around and we must get past them no matter what...

1.30 pm – chilled out time, driving the boat to catch the local competition, tanning a little, drinking lots of water to stay hydrated in these cold climates ( 34 degrees air temp in the shade and sea temp 27 degrees). Various people make snacks from lunch – we have been very spoilt and privilege to have fresh brown and white bread made for us each day – thanks Claire – your a star..

3.30 pm Following a rope splicing lesson with Daffid, Crackling and Buzz, Demo heads downstairs to the galley as its his turn to cook dinner for the crew – Chicken lasagne – start to be decided (if we are lucky..) We don’t see him for a while now...

5.30 pm – With Challenger 1 (old round the world yacht) just in front of us we decide to hot the boat up (make it go faster) fingers on the winches and time to go in for the kill  - the aim is to sail to windward of them to steal their wind and sail off into the distance.. Big Red has other ideas and punctures a lung (another hole on an existing war wound) so in a very seaman like fashion the majority of the crew help drop the kite, ready for another repair – MK2.6. Whilst this is happening, Demo has his own little bit of excitement in the galley, a fire!! (don’t ask). Demo would like to publicly apologise to Steve for this mishap – this is the 1st time he will know anything about it. He has also been banned from the galley by Claire as she was still cleaning up the mess on Monday am.

6 pm Daily Virgin G&T’s, update on the days results with full PowerPoint presentation and performance analysis from Steve and a wind update from Josh

6.30 pm Dinner is finally served – we are lucky it made it this far – a little rubbery(!) but otherwise very good!

7.30 pm Dinghy Boys are sent to the pit to mend Big Red ready for tomorrow – we must catch the other boats

8.30 pm Dingy Boys are loosing the will to live, both are very tired and Demo appears delusional as he chooses to watch PS I Love you , instead of Bad Boys – Buzz is concerned – mends his area sheepishly and shuttles of to bed. Leaving demo to finish his sewing and enjoy his choice of film?!!

8.35 pm Buzz bolts out of his room having found a pair – of what he hopes are clean – Y fronts under his pillow, believed to be Crackling’s – we both decide this is the work of Josh and we set about revenge – initially cling fling across the door was trialled, but with the lack of co-ordination due to sleep deprivation – this proves unsuccessful – Buzz goes to bed with the ultimate revenge planned – dead flying fish through the hatch window and 1 resting on the mesh smiling at both, whilst Josh and Claire sleep below – a little surprise for when they wake - teeheehee

10pm Buzz a sleep without Y fronts and utilising the spare pillow, thanks Demo. Demo is due to start watch, but yet again uses a movie and a little bit of sewing as an excuse for being an hour late!!

11.30 pm Daffid, Crackling and Demo wrestle the kite back into the snuffer and get it back on deck ready for use in the am – 5 minutes later and demo is asleep on watch – I don’t know how the guys at RS cope with out him?!?

The Next day

8 am – The story so far today – 6.30 am a scream came from the forward starboard cabin as Claire met her little present from the night before, Claire has spent the last couple of hours de-rubberising the oven, Big Red (MK 2.6) is up and flying and taking us forward at great speeds – we are getting 20 knots of breeze and things are looking good...

NEWS FLASH – BIG RED RIP – unfortunately the internal stitching to stem the large internal bleeding and continued minor ops have failed and at precisely 10.05 this morning she suffered a massive heart attack, after a couple of hours of flying and now she has been buried in the fore peak.

We are not far from land now and we can’t wait for a cold beer, some steak & chips and even some rum and ice cold coke – amazing what you miss when being in this privileged situation – we would like to thank Steve and all the other crew members for making this such a memorable experience.


The Dinghy Boys – Buzz and Demo

P.S. Charlie would like you to see another picture of his fish which we are led to believe is a Longbill Spearfish (tetrapturus pflluegeri)

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