About us and the boat

About us and the boat:

We were lucky enough to retire early at the start of 2013 so we could head off and "live the dream" on board our Nordhavn 47 Trawler Yacht. The idea is to see some of the planet, at a slow 6 - 7 knots pace. There are no fixed goals or timings, we just had a plan to visit Scotland and then probably the Baltic before heading south.

The Baltic has been postponed as we didn't manage to see everything we wanted to in Scotland during our first year owing to family issues. The idea is to visit the nicer areas in these latitudes before heading south for warmer weather. If we like somewhere, we will stay for a while. If not, we will just move on. So, for the people who love forward planning and targets, this might seem a little relaxed!

If anyone else is contemplating a trawler yacht life, maybe our experiences will be enough to make you think again, or maybe do it sooner then you intended!

The boat is called Rockland and she is built for long distance cruising and a comfortable life on board too. If you want to see more about trawler yachts and the Nordhavn 47 in particular, there is a link to the manufacturers website in our "useful stuff" section. For the technically minded, there is a little info and pictures of the boat and equipment in the same section


Richard and June

Saturday, 23 January 2016

Defendering Edinburgh and all points south

We went mad and visited the London Boat show, probably for the last time though as the event seems to be dying on its feet -  much smaller and less interesting with few boats and not much else going for it. However, it was great to catch up with the various boating folks that we have known for many years so it became a social occasion instead!

After London, Bend it Like Beckham on stage and a train trip, we ended up in our old home Edinburgh. There we were collecting some new wheels. We had decided that having transport for the winters would be good (likely to have a few more of them based in the UK whilst we finish exploring Scotland, Ireland, Baltic etc).

What to have? After a lifetime of nice BMW cars and bikes, we went to the other extreme and decided upon one of the last Land Rover Defenders built. Why an antique agricultural thing like that? Well, not too much hi-tech in it, happy to be left for a while without flattening the battery, easy enough to fix with very cheap parts (important as they go wrong regularly of course) and a car that needs to be driven rather than just pointed. They have real character and plenty of quirks too:

Of course, being a Defender, the first trip had to be in the snow, heading south towards Hamsterley Mill (near Newcastle):

At least it was sunny even if below zero centigrade..... Why head to Hamsterley Mill we hear you cry. Well, that is because John, Irene and Archie the Lakeland terrier live there. You've met Archie before but here is a reminder of just how cute he is:

During our time with them, we walked the beautiful beach at Seahouses:

which of course Archie seemed to enjoy:

even if he ignored his ball a little in favour of posing for the photographer.

Of course, after a trip back in the snow and then nice muddy roads heading for the coast we had made the Defender look a little more workmanlike, as it should. Proper Defenders are muddy not showroom shiny:

Bamburgh castle was impressive:

as was the detailing on a coffee in the coffee shop / cycle repair shop in Corbridge:

Heading further south, we went through Whitby. It was known as a hotbed of iniquity and vice in the TV series Heartbeat but didn't seem that way when we stopped for coffee. No signs of pregnant schoolgirls throwing themselves off the pier into stormy seas or local policemen diving in to save them fully clothed.

First of all we spotted a Broom European, like the one we owned on the river Thames many moons ago:

They really look very angular and 1970s now but a great boat with tardis like space inside. The town was a typical fishing come seaside holiday town with the expected mix of lovely old buildings, seedy tourist type shops and people like us wandering around in the freezing cold for some reason. The town is worth braving the cold for though:

The harbour area has, of course, the regulation lifeboat and we thought that we should add a picture of it to our expanding collection:

The rest of the run back to the south coast was via Beverley (lovely old market town) and then Harlow (less lovely concrete town centre development) to stay with the toddlers. The toddlers should be well known to you now of course. If not, then get reading some of the older posts on here and catch up. Sometimes you have to find things out for yourself and not be spoon-fed.

OK, you have met one of the new family members, the Defender. Now you'd better meet the rest of the penguin clan that seem to be taking over. After Patrick's arrival, the crew was given a penguin "twosie" by the female toddler and then some penguin slippers. Overkill? Yes, very probably. Anyway, here are all of them on display. Patrick, the hero of this blog, Penny the "twosie" penguin and the latest arrival, the twins on the slippers:

You might consider this as slightly overdressed and/or tacky. Some of the people on board at the time (Xmas) this photo was taken felt the same.....