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Old 27 November 2006, 05:05   #281
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Yep, they build 'em beautiful in Poland. Sleek lines, smooth curves and well made where it matters.

The boats are pretty good too!


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Old 27 November 2006, 14:54   #282
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mike C View Post
Yep, they build 'em beautiful in Poland. Sleek lines, smooth curves and well made where it matters.

The boats are pretty good too!


Mike
Mike , I thought your August trip to Poland was for ribbing and not bird watching
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Old 29 November 2006, 13:59   #283
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A Nauti Weekend In Calais

('No-one Expects the Spanish Inquisition')

Part 6 'Six Nurofen and a Bottle of Holy Water'


At last Littlehampton was in view. We maintained a respectful distance from the coastline and radioed the reception party who were waiting near our destination. As we drew closer they began signalling their location with a flashing light. We hailed each other and soon Lucasz was snapping away as the designated Pontoontalk photographer!

And then we turned into the Arun. As we proceeded in stately fashion up past the quays it was evident that Littlehampton was in festive mood with loud music emanating from the local hostelries and people dancing and congregating on the quayside despite the late hour. As no Littlehamptonites displayed any surprise whatsoever, it slowly dawned on us that we had in fact stumbled upon the Aya Napa of the South Coast of England!

As we proceeded upriver Richard worried that we should keep to the speed limit but Andre, delighted that he was once again in his home territory, declared loudly ‘there will be no-one about! Not this time of night or this time of year!’ A Monty Python moment! As seconds later at the pontoon we were blinded by a bright light from a craft alongside. Suddenly a man in black leapt aboard in the manner of Peter Schmeichel’s best efforts in ‘Strictly Come Dancing’. He maintained a dignified front despite nearly losing his balance. Concerned for his well-being we checked if he had injured himself but stopped short of awarding points for his manoeuvre.

The rest of his team had over-egged the custard slightly ( no slight intended to Parker’s first yellow RIB! ) on the approach and slapped into Nauti’s pride & joy (boat) head on. In the ensuing confusion the helmsman backed off and the team disappeared again into the night after at least managing to gather their dignity enough to ask us politely to stick around.

As we waited in orderly fashion for the boyos to sort themselves out we realized that they had brought along quite significant back-up! All thoughts of basic needs after four hours and 130 miles at sea (toilet, coffee, beer, food!!!) were forgotten as we noticed the choppers overhead and the blue flashing lights of half a dozen police cars in the car park!

By this time our friendly welcoming party (top Ribbers from Littlehampton) had also been directed to wait with us while the boat and luggage was checked. The unexpected visitors relaxed a little as they realized they were on a wild goose chase and seemed entirely unflapped by my collection of drugs and magical liquid ( 6 nurofen and a bottle of holy water)! Indeed they took the time to compliment us on excellent gear (equipment) and preparation for sea!

I asked the assertive little laddie who had jumped aboard why he would take such a risk alone in boarding a boat that already contained six burly figures! He explained one of his colleagues was supposed to board with him but when they realized the helm had mucked up the approach they knew they were heading for the drink and aborted their leap in the dark!

The next bizarre event occurred as a gentleman of the Special Branch turned to Richard and asked him a question. Immediately three loud bangs sounded out from beyond the marina. Richard leapt three feet into the air in perfect time with his interrogator and we all looked round aghast as to what further surprise was in store for us. Seconds later, the night sky burst into flame as we witnessed the beginning of the town’s firework display!

So there we were joking and chatting with England’s finest while the report of the pyrotechnics blended with the whirr of chopper blades, the wail of the sirens and the pounding rock music emanating from the Arun View. JK couldn’t have organised it better!

Nautibuoy carefully moored, we finally bid farewell to our eclectic welcoming party, Lucasz took some more souvenir photos and we headed for home. We turned back one last time on the pontoon to wave at our colleagues from Customs who managed to demonstrate at least PB 2 skills in a smoother departure. They clutched their only loot carefully; their brand new copy of the Parker RIBs brochure freely donated by old ‘Seahawk’ himself, the inimitable Andre !
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Old 29 November 2006, 14:14   #284
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Kathleen, that is a first class write up thank you. Made superb reading, sitting here with glass of wine chuckling away to myself.
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Old 29 November 2006, 14:15   #285
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Hehehe you're most welcome

Paul has a few final photos and the crew has done their job!

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Old 29 November 2006, 14:58   #286
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Watch out for that holy water; it can make you pregnant, but only if you are a virgin.
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Old 29 November 2006, 15:09   #287
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Fantastic reading . A very good account of the trip. Makes one want to do it again

well written Kathleen, I salute you
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Old 29 November 2006, 17:30   #288
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Maybe you should do the run again just to wind them up - video cameras at the ready and post it all on Youtube - they may think twice if they make idiots of themselves for the whole world to see!!!
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Old 29 November 2006, 17:40   #289
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What a great account Kathleen, I felt like I was there, reading your adventure.

Richard must be very proud to of have his New RIB's first adventure writen about.
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Old 30 November 2006, 03:29   #290
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Maybe you should do the run again just to wind them up - video cameras at the ready and post it all on Youtube - they may think twice if they make idiots of themselves for the whole world to see!!!
No I do not think I would be a good idea. For sure we will have another run or more as it is a very good way to deliver big ribs when the client does not require a trailer. Next time will for sure advise relevant authorities and plan the crossing to arrive at daylight.

It is nice to know that our coastline is being guarded. If I remember correctly not so long ago two ribs were caught crossing the channel with illegal emigrants. I have also heard that about 1 year ago a boat carrying drugs was nicked coming into Littlehampton.
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