The Owl and The Pussy Cat

The Owl and the Pussy-cat went to sea In a beautiful 'red and white'(!) boat, They took some honey, and plenty of money, Wrapped up in a five pound note. The Owl looked up to the stars above, And sang to a small guitar, 'O lovely Pussy! O Pussy my love, What a beautiful Pussy you are, You are, You are!What a beautiful Pussy you are!'

Edward Lear

Monday, 14 November 2011

A boat called Hope

Well, after 18 months of searching we finally found a boat that we liked for a price we could afford. She (why are they always she's?) became ours on Friday.
Here we are having our first meal on board.
Me taking photos,
Vince phoning a friend to share our excitement
We spent Friday driving down to Gosport, loading food, bedding and clothing on board and working out where switches, gas bottles and other basics were.
On Saturday morning we met the previous owner who showed us round the boat and gave us so much information that our brains were in overload. He's now off to buy a bigger boat and sail off to the Caribbean with his family, Wow!
In the afternoon, not yet ready for the Caribbean, we sailed out into Portsmouth harbour and back in again! We look very happy in these photos. We were putting on brave faces for the camera as we were actually finding it quite stressful to be sailing an unfamiliar boat in unfamiliar waters, with other yachts, ferries and deep channel markers all over the place.
Portsmouth to Starboard

Gosport to port

Vince smiling!

Nina smiling!
But we made it out and in without hitting anything, phew, so far so good.
On Sunday our task was to sail the boat out of Portsmouth harbour, along the coast and into Chichester harbour, where we are having some work done on her over winter. It doesn't look far on a map (or a 'chart' as boaty maps are called) But believe me it is a long long way when the wind is blowing hard, in the wrong direction, the seas are rough, and you are cold, wet and feeling very seasick! Needless to say I was in no state to take photos!
But we made it, all three of us unscathed (physically at least) we are still speaking to each other, and we only hit the mud in Chichester harbour once!
Hope on her new berth at high tide

Hope settled into the mud about 4 hours later.
Behind the bit of water you can see
 is where we got stuck in the mud!

Chaos as we pack everything and empty the boat for the winter

And finally, a flock of starlings decorate the rigging
on a nearby yacht
 For those who'd like some random technical info;
She's a 1983 Nicholson 31 (31 foot long), 10 foot wide, fully encapsulated long lead keel, transom hung rudder, 1.52m draft, sloop rig with removable inner forestay, an inboard engine with a cruising speed (engine only) of about 5 knots, and has 6 berths/bed (that would be a pretty crowded boat!)


  1. Wow fantastic boat, very exciting! She looks great (see how nautical I am with the gender thing)
    Mum and Dad told me you were sailing over to Hayling Island yesterday, you were on the way when I spoke to them, the tension was palpable. Glad you made it. Happy Birthday to Nina for tomorrow.

  2. Chris Berry Marine Surveyor18 November 2011 at 02:11

    Vince and Nina, congratulations and well done! I hope you continue to enjoy Hope for many years to come. See you soon.