Monday, 21 September 2015

Southampton Boat Show 2015

Friday 11th September and the start of Southampton Boat Show, so it was down to business for some of us. Simon was at Goodwood Revival for the long weekend and I was at the show, luckily I had Dick Pizey on hand to help me for two days, as he enjoyed helping me at London, he agreed to come along and see how the two shows differ.

We had a good first day, with a few orders for accessories taken.

Saturday 12th

The sun was shining, and many people were coming through the gates. Sam Llewellyn come over to say "hello" to us. It is always lovely to hear stories from past and present Drascombe owners.

The delightful Brad visited the show today, along with several thousands of other visitors.

In the evening, Dick and I met with Chris and Fiona Jeckells for an early celebratory 1st anniversary meal at TGI Fridays, even before leaving I had a swift G&T, followed by a lovely cocktail with my meal, and some wine later, now for those who know me, I am not a drinker, however after starting to learn to sail, things soon changed. The evening was fun filled and lots of laughing, even a few tears with laughing from yours truly, looks like there will be a repeat next year.

The naughty step
Dick on a Lugger

 Oh we did have some fun when we went to TGI Fridays with some friends

Sunday 13th

Dick headed home to earn some brownie points, while Stewart was at the show before me to put the sails up, and get the stand ready, yes, I had a slight headache, but still had a smile on my face.

Hannah and. Matt, along with Lauren and Kyle come along to the show, it is lovely to think that our girls come along to the show, even after all of these years, there is still lots for them to see. Now we have the next generation with Kyle, this is his second Southampton Boat Show. 

 Looks like Kyle was having some fun at the show

Some interesting enquiries, sun shining but a quiet afternoon of visitors through the gate.

Monday 14th

Simon was back from Goodwood, and was straight down to the show, this was a welcome break for me, as I had plenty of office work to do.

Tuesday 15th

It is great how Simon and I can share the workload of the show, after being at London for five days earlier this year, it certainly gave me the confidence to get out there and talk to the people who are 
interested in these lovely boats, I have even been told that I have really come out of myself since taking up sailing, nice compliments, but I am still me at the end of the day, happy and smiling and have time to listen to all the stories. Hannah along with Joe and Alisdair visited me today.
Todays visitors were Niall and Nigel Wardrop from Scotland and members of the DA
Niall, Me and Nigel

Tonight we went out with some other exhibitors, Alex, Birgitta, Ronan, Ian, Simon, Sandy along with Hannah, Lauren, Kyle and Simon, we had a lovely meal at an Indian restaurant, socialising is so much fun, with lots of laughs.

Wednesday 16th

Sadly, not the best of days to be at a boat show, the rain kept lots of people away from the show.

Thursday 17th 

Weather has improved, but attendance is still down. Martin joined Simon today on the stand.

At the yard, we have been busy with refurbishment work on a Lugger which we collected from and will be delivering back to Scotland when completed.

In the evening the girls joined us, along with Nick, Fleur, Ross and Lyndsey for a meal out, we have made some great friends during our time at the boat shows over the years, and it is always lovely to be able to spend an evening with them.

Friday 18th

Hard to believe that we are one week into the show. I joined Simon on the stand today and there were a fair few people coming through the gates.

We spent some time talking to one of our customers, James Landale, James is Deputy Political Editor for the BBC, and was telling us of the enjoyment his family have with their Lugger.
James Landale

Rum and Ginger Beer time !!
Saturday 19th

Ahh, today I am looking after Kyle while Mummy works, so it is down to the boat show.

For a 13 month old little boy, he is certainly easy to entertain, and always smiling.
Someone is being cheeky today

Kyle has packed his bag and is going around doing quality control on the boats, to find which one he likes the most.

3 men on the naughty step today

I took him down to the pontoon as I was interested in the new Shrimper 21 ( after Dick come back 
drooling over the brochure last week) we saw Peter and after asking him to hold Kyle, we got on the boat to have a good look around, and was pleasantly surprised. It certainly has been thought about, especially with supplying what the customer wants. Time to go back to the drawing board, maybe it is about time there was a new Drascombe.

The afternoon was busy, with some very good enquiries.

Sunday 20th

The last day, and some are feeling a little uhh, too much drink Alex :-)

All of the excitement of the past 10 days must have caught up with me, as I fell asleep in the chair, hoping I wasn't seen, but too late, a few photos were taken, oh dear, this could be fun!

With a good amount of accessories sold, a brokerage boat sold, several boats booked in for winter work, or refurbishment, we can safely say we had a good show. Now to the office on Monday to type up quotes, and obtain a few shipping prices.


With the boat all packed up, and the stand dismantled, it is all over for another year.

Thanks to all the customers, new, old and potential for coming and talking to us, I walked into the show with a smile every day, and left each evening the same. A smile and a friendly "hello" do not cost anything.

Here's to London in January 2016

Sharon xx

This was left outside our stand on Sunday morning. Just because I was not at the show for 9am, it didn't mean that I was not working from 7am answering emails. I do love the Scottish humour.


Sunday, 6 September 2015

A few days sailing - The Isle of Wight

A couple of weeks ago, my sailing teacher mentioned that he was planning on a day sailing over the August bank holiday, so I took it upon myself to invite myself along, this actually turned out to be Friday to Sunday break.

Checking first with Simon that he was happy for me to go, I spoke to Dick to find out where we would be sailing, "the Isle of Wight" was the reply. OK! So this could be fun. With plans made, I booked my two bed and breakfasts, first in Yarmouth and then in East Cowes.

Friday, with a mid morning tide, I arrived just in time to see Daislebee being launched, well, I have to say, I did close my eyes for a while, I am sure the Drascombe boats are easier to launch than a Shrimper!

Bags on board, we motor out of Ashlett Creak in the direction of the rain, nothing to bad, but time to dust of the sailing jacket.  Soon the sails were up, and we were sailing in the rain. As long as I am warm, the rain is no problem to me, what was the worrying was when we started to heel, my word, that was interesting, feet bracing on the cockpit seat, and my hands gripping the gunwhale, if there is one way to test my fear of water, then this has to be it.

OK, I know I said I wanted to learn to sail, but really did we have to go out in the rain, heel the boat and then manage 7.2 knots, all in the space of an hour?

We took a lunch break at Newtown Creak, a place I have heard off often as a stopping place on their cruises. Anchoring up, the sun was shining finally, and we sat and enjoyed our lunch along with enjoying the views.
Some loving sailing going on
After lunch we headed to Yarmouth, the first of our stops, while coming into the harbour, I was a tad worried about the big ferries, thinking they would get us, but actually they are further away than you think. We were met by the harbour boat, and shown to our mooring, not bad Mr P, we couldn't get any closer to the HM office if we tried.
Just love this sign, they even have "Harwoods" on the IOW

Off for an ice-cream and walk along the pier, we soon found ourselves in a pub enjoying a cold cider or two. Looking at the weather, it was hard to believe that we had sailed in the rain earlier in the day.
After a lovely evening meal in a local pub, I set of for my b&b, leaving Dick in the pub!
Daislebee in Yarmouth
The next morning, I walked down to the harbour to meet Dick, and after looking at the tides, we set off in the direction of Lymington. Sadly there was no wind, so a gentle motor along, looking at all of the other boats who were out, as well as missing the ferries which travel between Lymington and Yarmouth.

At one point, Dick put out the mackerel line and caught one, this was a first for me. Going into the harbour at Lymington there are certainly some lovely boats there. I was looking out for Drascombes, while Dick was spotting Shrimpers, no guessing for who one that one!
Catching mackerel
We motored back over to just outside Newtown Creek this time, and had baked camembert and crusty read for lunch, I could get used to all this eating Al Fresco. As we finished lunch, it started to drizzle, after having a lovely morning and lunch, we see the rain settling in for the day. This is where I took shelter in the cabin, well actually I fell asleep on the bunk listening to the thud of the motor.
Arriving at East Cowes, Dick radios ahead to check on availability for a mooring, having been asked what depth do you draw, we could hear the young lady laugh, when Dick said "14 inches" There are some benefits to sailing boats.
Heading to the HM office to pay our dues, we then head to The Lifeboat for a drink or two, we then headed back to Daislebee and had supper on board the boat.
Off to my second B&B of the weekend, some things I am grateful for, as I am not sure I would have enjoyed sleeping on a boat while it was raining.
I woke to a lovely sunny morning, oh why couldn't it have been like this yesterday afternoon, oh well at least we should get some sailing today.
We head out East Cowes towards Ashlett SC, soon the sails are up, but it is a slow sail. At one point we get the compass out and the sailing chart out, to see where we are on the chart. This is another part of sailing which is all new to me, and something else I have to learn.
Coming into Ashlett, the power boats were out motoring across the solent, as the first one went past us, my knuckles were white from gripping the tiller, and I asked Dick to take it as I didn't like it, only to be told "no", you have to learn (he can be so mean at times). When the next powerboat come along, we went into the wash, I felt a bit more comfortable with that.
Back at Ashlett Sailing Club, the tide was quite high, so wet feet were in order.
High Tide at Ashlett Sailing Club

Once Daislebee was on her trailer, we washed her down, hosed out the brakes on the trailer, and packed her away for the time being.
So, what did I learn
Make sure you take suitable clothing and be prepared for a quick change in the weather
Luckily the harbours and my B&B were booked in advance
If going away over a busy period, book a restaurant - although the takeaway on the boat was different
New to me
Going over 7 knots
Using the compass, and looking at the chart to work out where we are
Catching mackerel - Although not keen when it jumped out of Dicks hand
Pulling the jib out
Next time
Being allowed to put the main sail up
Tacking, until I understand what I am doing
Thank you Dick for a lovely and adventurous few days, some "me" time was definitely in order.
Not sure when I will be sailing next, as we have Southampton Boat Show coming up, but hopefully I can pursued Dick before the end of the season to go back out for one last sail.

Come back soon xx