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Monday 16. August 2010


geographical position
51° 23.4' N 0° 31.3' E
miles covered today:
10 nm
prev. day:
502,6 total: 512,6


days events

A gray, chilly morning: The boat is swerving on her mooring line, the waves are choppy even in these sheltered waters, a NW wind is blowing a cold force 4 to 5. During breakfast I decide to row ashore and take the train to Sheerness on Sea.
Back on the boat by noon, with stocks filled up and everything shipshape, the mooring line is dropped and I set off under engine and staysail alone for the
Medway, planning to motor sail up the river as far as Rochester in order to look for a good berth, convenient for trips ashore and perhaps London town.
There are hundreds of berths already taken up by boats below Chatham, when I slowly wound my way round the many bends of the old river. By now the sky has cleared up with the sun shining warmly from a blue sky onto the many sites along the shores soaked in centuries of naval and military history.

Betty on the Thunderbolt Pier, Chatham

Past Chatham round the last two bends to the old bridge crossing the Medway there are no berths for yachts to be found so I turn around and head back for Chatham Reach, when I suddenly spot a vacant berth on a pontoon, that could just be long enough for Betty. And really, I just about manage to nudge her into this spot and kill the engine, but it sure is a close fit. Perceiving a couple who enjoy the afternoon sun on their yacht, I ask them about the practicalities of a two night stay there and am told, that I need a key to open the heavy gate up on the landing. After calling a friend they manage to get the phone number of the harbour master, who lets me know that this is not a public landing, but after some deliberation, promises to come down later in the evening in order to arrange something and bring me the key. Very satisfied with the way today turned out for the best, I bring order into the ship and cook myself a good sized meal. Later I hear from Tony, the harbour master, that I made fast at the Thunderbolt Pier, which is part of the Historic Dockyard of Chatham and that I can stay till Friday, if I feel inclined to do so. I pay the fees for two nights, get the key and instructions and after admiring the boat Tony leaves me for a good night in what feels like 'Abraham's lap'.

  skipper:Jan Holthusen  

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