Swallows flock to Mylor – it must be summer

My loyal readers (there are at last two of you) will recall that Riff Raff had arrived at Mylor, after wild ride on Terence, late on the Wednesday evening in the middle of the first week of July.  We parked “up the valley” and Riff Raff was rigged before dark. We stayed up the valley all night and launched after breakfast. Several other Swallows were launching too.

We had all arrived early for the Swallow Yachts “raid”* on the river Fal. Over the next couple of days more Swallows arrived, launched, sailed and tried to moor in the same small stretch of pontoon provided by the Mylor habour master. Tents were erected at the campsite, cottages and B&B’s occupied and the important code for the shower block was learnt by heart. Charts were perused, the racing rules for the week were examined and hulls were polished with secret concoctions.**

We met together in the local restaurant for the “welcome” meal, where we hailed people we recognised from previous years and welcomed new comers with ribald remarks. And, eventually to bed, to wake for breakfast and the briefing for the fist race. Riff Raffs chat plotter decided that racing was not for it, so failed to “initialise”. The snag is that the chart plotter is a single point of failure in the instruments. If it doesn’t work, there’s no depth sounder, so not only do you not know where you are, you also don’t know if you’re liable to run into the hard stuff. So, whilst the fleet went off racing, I spent an hour or so on the Garmin help line only to establish that the software needed updating. ‘Just download version xx to your PC, save it on a USB stick, transfer that to the plotter and turn it on – the new software will load itself’ said the helpful help desk.

But no PC was available.

To my great surprise, the Marina office allowed me to use one of their PC’s for this purpose and we were back in action by the middle of the afternoon.

I won’t bore you with the detail of the next few days – suffice to say that Riff Raff rapidly acquired the mantle of Vagabond and acted as “back marker” for the fleet. I took a few photographs but they were all pretty rubbish as you can see from this example:

20180709_124524

 

Fortunately, there were other photographers present and you can find some of their work at http://seatern.uk/raid2018/ 

There are even a few of Riff Raff!

At the end of the week, we recovered the boats to their trailers, derigged, packed up and drove out. Riff Raff was back at Northney by mid July, rigged and ready to go again. But first I had to get her tent and that’s another story.

Notes

*  For the uninitiated, a raid is a series of races under sail (rowing is allowed) for small boats, followed by periods of deep discussion, bragging and much quaffing of various beverages by the skippers and crew. Points are won in the races and w all know what points mean……

** Well, not the last part.***

*** As far as I know.

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