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Posted By Discussion Topic: first time on the broads

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Richard
Jan-23-2005 @ 11:43 AM                           Permalink
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Some time ago I started a thread about first timers on the broads.

Since the there have been some others posted to help first timers on dealing with yachts, the side of the river, and Yarmouth.

But when hires a boat for the first time I think one of the most difficult periods must be when the boatyard says "she's all yours - see you in a week".

I'm usually saying to myself "d*mn, the check didn't bounce", but if you've never "driven" a boat before it must be a rather nerve racking time, especially from the busy boatyards like potter or wroxham.

Do you have any tips for first timers ?, or those of us that get confused a lot ?

This message was edited by Webmaster on 4-15-05 @ 5:14 PM

woodwose
Jan-23-2005 @ 9:47 PM                           Permalink
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My holiday bungalow is just down from Herbert Woods at Potter Heigham. After 3.00pm on Saturdays we put Woodwose safely in its dock out of danger and watch the boats go by. Most people seem to be in reasonable control but you do see some mishaps. Problems usually occur when boats slow down. This causes a lack of control and I have seen quite a few big cruisers sideways in this very narrow part of the river.

I would say that actually driving the boat is not the biggest problem. What people need is information about the Broads. My suggestion would be to go and get a copy of The Broadcaster. It's free and full of useful information. There is a lot going on in the Broads area, but many people miss out because they are stuck on their boat all the time.

Nigel
Ludham

flonker
Jan-23-2005 @ 12:41 AM                           Permalink
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I feel somewhat deflated. Roya took umbrage (get it!) of my reincarnation of Potter Heigham, and me pennant fell on stony ground.

Here is the Trial Run.
As Roya has said – if you don’t like it – this forum is like a newspaper – ignore.


It is time for the start of your first holiday on the Norfolk Broads. The car is loaded, the crew, plus dog, are ready for the off!

You arrive at the boatyard. Park the car and clutching all your documents you proceed to the reception area.

“Hello, my name is Mr Pearson”
“Hi, now let me see, you are on Tranquil Moments”
Is that an omen or what!
The receptionist brings out a form.
“Is this your first time on the river Mr Pearson?”
“Well I did have a trip on a boating lake at Lowestoft several years back, but I suppose that doesn’t count”
“Er, not really” as she surreptitiously ticks a box on the booking form.
The receptionist adopts a superior manner.
“Car parking undercover is £10.00, Outside is £5.00 and Diving Insurance is also £5.00”.
You can’t help but think that Inshore Life Boat Insurance would be more appropriate, what the hell is Diving Insurance all about – anyway you pay.

The receptionist smiles benevolently. “I’m afraid that your boat is not quite ready at the moment”, as she accepts your total payment.
Your stomach lurches. You have that sinking feeling that all is not well!
“ It will be about an hour, perhaps you would like to pop into Stalham”
“No problem – I’ll be back in an hour”

An hour soon passes and you present yourself to reception yet aging. All is well the boat is ready!!!

With family, you proceed along the quay, and there she is Tranquil Moments, moored stern on, looking immaculate. You open the door, the boat is spotless.

“Right Mother, get the kettle on, and I and the boys will unload the car”
Feverish activity takes place as boxes and cases are taken from the car and placed on the boat.
“Darling”
“What, you can see I’m busy”
“There’s no water – the taps don’t work”
“You’re joking”
“No I’m not. Nothing works.
“ I can’t believe it – I’ll speak to the man.”

You decide to get the dog on board (it’s name is Mafeking due to the fact that it all ways wants to relieve itself)
Mafeking stands on the aft deck, mortified, Refuses to budge,  Dogs feet do not like decks of boats. There is only one remedy, a quick boot up the rear, an undignified scramble in the well of the steps. One problem resolved.

Salvation is at hand. The trial run driver appears.
His name is Darren (All first born, in Norfolk, in the mid 1980’s were called Darren)
Darren is 20. During his informative years, from 14 to 19 he used to converse in Neanderthalian  grunts to his elders. Now, having mastered the art of conversation, he finds it necessary  to end each sentence, or comment with the word “right” This gives him confidence that he has been understood.

“Hi, my name is Darren. Right”
“You’re ready for you trial run. Right”
“ Yes – were ready”
“Tell him about the taps darling”
“I will, I will”
Darren gives a knowing smile. (I’m starting to “warm” towards him already)

………………………… might be continued – right!!


Dwile Flonker

Richard
Jan-24-2005 @ 2:48 AM                           Permalink
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thank you flonker - got a good laugh out of that one, can't wait for the next episode !

roya
Jan-24-2005 @ 3:22 PM                           Permalink
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Spot on Mr Flonker
Keep it coming cheers for now.
ps can we have a piccy of Darren please?

roya


Ps i think you should show everybody what you did to Potter ,the locals in Roses were not amused.double cheers for now.

This message was edited by roya on 1-24-05 @ 2:34 PM

flonker
Jan-24-2005 @ 6:26 PM                           Permalink
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The family is on the boat. The Trial Run Driver, Darren, Gods Gift to Blakes, has arrived and has been presented with the first problem. No water!

“Have you turned the pump on mate?”
“The Pump? What pump?
“The Water Pump”
Darren takes that as a no, and strides purposefully towards the middle cabin. He points down towards to what ostensibly looks like a light switch.
“There you are – it’s off - right”
He switches to the on position. Immediately the sound of running water, from all the taps heralds whoops of delight from Mrs P.
Darren, flushed with success, details the GRAND PLAN.
“First I’ll show the outside of the Boat – Right”
“Then the inside – Right”
“Then we will go up river – Right”
“Sounds good to me – Right” You can’t believe you said that.

On the deck Darren explains the fixtures and fittings:
“This is the toilet pump out fitting – where they pump the toilet from”
“I see. How often do you have to do that then?”
Darren makes eye contact for the first time.
“Depends on how regular you all are”
“How do you know when it’s full?”
“Don’t worry about it. Over breakfast one morning it will be the topic of conversation, then will be the time”.

You both progress further along the deck.
Darren points a foot clad in a somewhat neglected trainer at the next deck fitting.
“That’s the diesel filler cap – you don’t have to worry about that, you have enough fuel to circumnavigate the broads for three weeks” (You don’t believe him)

The next fitting is examined after a suitable pause.
“This is your water filler cap. The water goes into the Wonder Tank”  
“The Wonder Tank Eh!” You wait with bated breath, what technological marvel will be disclosed.
“It’s called the Wonder Tank because all week you will wonder how much you have got in it”
“Er! Has it not got a gauge or something? “
Darren looks at you as if you are demented.
“No, just keep it topped up”
The conversation regarding this particular subject seems to be finished.

“Well that’s the outside bit, we’ll go inside and I’ll show you some more, and then we will go up river”

A ripple of excitement runs through the crew. ……………….to be continued?


Dwile Flonker

roya
Jan-24-2005 @ 7:36 PM                           Permalink
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Yes Please

roya

moonfleet
Jan-24-2005 @ 8:33 PM                           Permalink
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yes please. Smile

michael & tony

flonker
Jan-25-2005 @ 4:30 PM                           Permalink
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Darren has sorted out the water problem and concluded the tour of the decks. It is now time to explain the inside of your craft. You follow respectively and enter the aft cabin.

Darren opens a door on the left handside, which to all intents and purposes looks like a cupboard. It resembles a Tardus. Inside there is a shower and a toilet. The former being self explanatory is summarily dismissed. The toilet however requires closer examination. On this boat it was installed by Roger, one of the tallest men in Norfolk. Subsequently this particular variant has been designed in such a way that all who patronise it find themselves perched about four feet up in the air.

You both gaze into the bowl. Your first impression is that such a contraption defies all known  logic.
Darren breezily explains :
“When you have finished, close the lid”  (………………think about it)
“You then reach out to the back here, turn this valve on, turn that valve off, pump the handle briskly for a couple of minutes, turn the valve off – and there you have done it. Or not, as the case may be!”
You make a mental note to use shore toilets whenever possible.

“Now for the engine”
“I’ll follow you Darren”

Surprisingly Darren enters the middle cabin. Followed by you, the dog, and the children.
“OK you guys, there is not enough room for us all in here”
“Oh Daaaad”
“No. Out of it. Go and feed the ducks or something.”
Darren folds back the mattress and removes a wooden panel. Lo and behold the engine!!!
“Phew! What an awful smell”
Darren looks a bit phased. “Can’t understand it.  Must be the bilge. I’ll put some Bilge Sweetner down  – that will cure it”

Mafeking rolls his eyes towards the ceiling, with a baleful stare, and with tail between his legs sneaks out of the cabin.

You notice that the engine is made by some chap called Perky from Peterborough, Darren by this time is engrossed in explaining, dip sticks, water filters and a thing called a header tank. You nod solemnly.

“Right – that’s the engine bit, now I’ll show you how to start the beastie up.”
You follow Darren to the Bridge. Well. It’s not really a bridge, more a panel with a few dials and a wheel in front of it.

“That’s the rev counter – shows you how fast you are going.”
You attention is drawn to a conversion chart, and relates revs to miles per hour.
(in practice this instrument is as much use as an ash tray on a motor bike.)
“When you start the boat first of all take it out of gear by pulling this little silver button out – like so. Now turn the key to the heat position for one minute, then turn to the start position like so.”
Perky at the back, groans and grunts like a geriatric threshing machine.
And then, when all seems lost, Perky rallies and with a triumphant cough splutters into life, and it must be said, goes from strength to strength.

“I think that we are ready to go up river” Says Darren, having recovered his composure.
“I’ll undo the ropes”
“Let me do it Dad”
“No. You can do it next time”
“Oh Daaaaad”!
“Don’t worry your Father – you can see he is a bit stressed.”
“Yes Mother”

(This stress will pale into insignificance as the day progresses)
………………………………to be continued.


Dwile Flonker

This message was edited by flonker on 1-25-05 @ 3:36 PM

roya
Jan-25-2005 @ 6:12 PM                           Permalink
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OK you win i am now on the green pills
spot on.

roya

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