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Old 27 July 2003, 17:17   #1
Boat name: Jolly Sailor
Make: Ribtec
Engine: Yamaha 240hp diesel
Join Date: Jun 2003
Posts: 20
06 - And they're off!

It's a strange return to the last time we crossed the North Atlantic, when we left a sunny New York two years ago, heading for St John's, the Azores and Lizard Point. This time there's no sunshine, but the outlook is the same. In Alan's words, "we've had the weather forecast from hell."

A large depression is tracking across Canada, with a gale warning issued, and the likelihood of 35 knot winds. The best we can hope for is to stay ahead of it. On the plus side, we've been told there's no ice worth speaking of to worry us. We may see a few icebergs, but all the sea ice has gone.

The highlight of our preparations for the coming voyage is undoubtedly being "screeched", initiated as honorary Newfoundlanders. The master of ceremonies is a gentleman clad in heavy duty fishermen's waterproofs, brandishing an oar. In order to achieve our exalted status, we have to do a number of Newfie things, including reciting something in Newfie-ese (if there is such a thing), and singing part of a traditional Newfie song. The screech itself - a fearsome rum designed to elicit a hoarse response on downing a glass in one - isn't too bad an experience. Not compared to eating a dried whole capelin, fins and all, or kissing Gertrude, a large dead fish. Finally, each of us goes down on one knee to be dubbed honorary Newfoundlanders, the oar brought down regally on each shoulder.

On Sunday morning the boat is fuelled up with two tonnes of diesel, ready for the first leg to Nanortalik. Boat and crew are blessed for the coming voyage by Egbert's friend Father Christopher, and then it's time to go. Press and supporters board the whale-watching tour ship Scademia to see us off in style. At 1342 local, 1512 GMT, Egbert's daughter Rebecca drops the flag to start the clock, and we blast past Scademia out of the harbour.

We're glad to be finally on our way, but mindful too that this is the first time we're out in the boat and Steve Lloyd isn't with us. He's made a full recovery since his heart attack last year, but Alan, Jan and I will miss his cheery good humour. Still, we know we have a worthy replacement in our new crew man, Newfoundlander Egbert Walters.

So Jolly Sailor is on her way. The sea's bumpy,but we're making a good 18 knots, and we're hopeful of staying ahead of the bad weather. There is in fact someone keeping an eye on us as we head north-east. The research vessel Oceanus, belonging to the world-famous Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution (discoverers of the Titanic wreck) are heading out from St John's on the same course, and they've said they'll keep a friendly eye out for us on their radar screen.

Next stop, Greenland.

Clive Tully

© 2003 Clive Tully
Update transmitted by Stratos Iridium satellite phone.

Egbert's daughter Rebecca drops the flag to start the clock:
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Old 27 July 2003, 17:20   #2
John Kennett's Avatar
Country: UK - England
Town: Brighton
Length: 3m +
Join Date: May 2000
Posts: 6,678
So they're off. Fingers crossed for better weather!

What's the betting that this "screeching" routine was a stich up, invented purely for the amusement of the real Newfies?

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Old 27 July 2003, 19:16   #3
Country: UK - Wales
Town: Aberystwyth
Boat name: Undecided
Make: Undecided
Length: Undecided
Engine: Undecided
Join Date: Apr 2002
Posts: 605
Probably was yeah, but given the choice between that and what it seems is in store on the Channel Islands trip, I'll take the "screeching"!

Anyway, safe journey to 'em.
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Old 28 July 2003, 00:14   #4
Country: Canada
Town: Devon, Alberta
Join Date: Jul 2003
Posts: 111
Bon Voyage!

Best of luck to the crew of the Jolly Sailor! I'm Eg's oldest daughter. I'll be keeping an eye on these posts to keep abreast of your progress. Wishing you all a safe and speedy return!
Deana, Trevor, Talia, Arnold, Jason and Norman!
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Old 28 July 2003, 01:57   #5
Country: Other
Make: FB 55
Length: 10m +
Join Date: May 2001
Posts: 1,711
All the best Guys - we will follow your progress with great interest and sincerely wish that this final leg is completely incident free.
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Old 28 July 2003, 02:03   #6
Country: UK - Channel Islands
Town: St Martins
Boat name: MATRIX
Make: Jeanneau Leader 805
Length: 8.05
Engine: Volvo KAD 43 Diesel
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 248
Good Morning guys.

Hope youj had a good trip during the night and are making good speed.

Keep it coming with the updates.

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Old 28 July 2003, 03:40   #7
Country: UK - Wales
Town: cardiff
Make: humber
Length: 4m +
Engine: mariner 40 hp
Join Date: Jun 2002
Posts: 51
good luck guys , and enjoy , regards bryan edwards
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Old 28 July 2003, 06:22   #8
Country: Canada
Town: Newfoundland
Length: no boat
Join Date: May 2000
Posts: 2,097
Originally posted by John Kennett
So they're off. Fingers crossed for better weather!

What's the betting that this "screeching" routine was a stich up, invented purely for the amusement of the real Newfies?

The "Screech" routine is an old custom to welcome people to Newfoundland and admit them as honourary Newfies. So its not something laid on just for Alan and the boys but when I was Screeched in in Jan of this year I managed to avoid eating the caplin so maybe that was special for the guys! I hold the dubious honour of being the first person screeched in at Trapper Johns (famous pub on the infamous George St in St Johns) in 2003!

And Screech rum (nasty stuff) did get its name from the noise that you make when you've downed a tot!

Godspeed lads and see you in Portsmouth.

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Old 28 July 2003, 13:53   #9
Country: Canada
Town: Devon, Alberta
Join Date: Jul 2003
Posts: 111
Hi Dad!

Hi Dad! I hope you don't have any adventures planned for next summer - we decided this morning we are coming home next summer for a couple of weeks. Talia is already starting to save money in her piggy bank!!!
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Old 28 July 2003, 14:28   #10
Country: Canada
Town: st johns
Join Date: Jul 2003
Posts: 1
good luck guys!!!! hope its going good..

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