Skipper agis a skipper

What, you may wonder, is the humble letting agent thinking of, swanning off on a sailing holiday in the middle of March?  Well, for a start, it was not a holiday: it was a course; and secondly, it was not Tenerife: it was Largs, just a few nautical miles from Holy Loch, which is now officially the wettest location in Scotland – and that is going something – (but more of Largs later).

A  friend of Jo’s did the same course this week, but in Tenerife.  But why risk the accusation of enjoying a fabulous sailing week off the coast of Africa when one can suffer in frozen rain on the Clyde?  (The sea was actually frozen in Holy Loch one morning).

To Infinity and Beyond!

The Day Skipper ticket, which the candidate hopes to receive after the five-day course, enables one to hire a boat on one’s own and/or to take one’s family on a sailing holiday on the Clyde, or in the Greek islands, or Tenerife.   I agreed to go along on this arduous training ordeal with Captn Jono Stokes RN (Rtd.)  aka Buzz Lightyear,  who insisted on Largs despite my suggestions.




….ah!   Some time later.  How time flies, and how easy it is not to get round to doing all those things at the bottom of the Urgent list, like posts for example, or the Client Loo.  It is called the client loo, but it is just the loo in the office, the only one, and I cannot recall an occasion when a client has used it.  Just as well, because it is a disgrace.  It has never been redecorated – actually come to think of it , it has never been decorated, let alone re-decorated, in more than twenty years.  This is because although it functions, no-one sees it (apart from us), so it never gets done.

Worrying about the client loo brings me back to the sailing trip, and an even worse place, the inadequacy of which forced us to ditch (put ashore-aarrgh me lubbers)  at Rothesay on the Isle of Bute,  home of the Ladies and Gents Victorian Public Toilets & Showers,  which must be one of the finest and best-preserved buildings of its type in the country, well worth a visit by the way.  Our instructor discouraged loitering, however, and after some ‘harbour manoeuvring’ we were off again up the coast to Port Bannatyne, where we were finally allowed to escape and go to the pub for the evening, only to be demolished at pool by some old-timer who claimed he had never played before.  We were met with such generosity and friendliness that it was with heavy hearts that we finally left the party and turned in (means went to bed).

[season 2 episode 2 coming soon]