My mother moved into a home recently and going through the house I found all the letters I had sent my parents. Some were up to 12 pages long. It was good to see the stories I tell,l were not too far from the truth. Though they were censored, there was no mention of drink. drugs or sex.
I never cease to be amazed by Public Address readers. Something gets published on the most obscure subject and suddenly dozens of people come out of the woodwork who know all about it.
What a fantastic adventure, Paul! With those letters I'm thinking that there may be a book to be written about it all -- I'd buy a copy...
In my mind Nancy B grew up and became Nancy Wake.
Wow -- weirdly I've also had that same exact train of thought!
I've long wondered why Nancy Wake isn't much more famous in New Zealand -- for my money she's probably the coolest NZer ever. Perhaps they could put her on the banknotes when we get rid of the queen's head.
I have actually often thought about a film script of Nancy Wake's life -- but it seems like it would have to be so big-budget that there'd be no chance of it being made.
Here’s a picture of Lonebird in the early 90’s.
Great photo, Nancy! And my seven-year-old son (Arthur Ransome fan that he is) will just about have a heart attack when he sees your name.
I collected my second Ferro cement boat from diamond habour a few years back. It was a Harley Tahitian. My other Ferro boat was also a Tahitian, but the stretched version.
Wow, a double ferrocement owner! Presumably you liked them? I am intrigued that they do seem to have a very long life -- in contrast to some 20 year old plastic boats I've seen that are already delaminating like crazy. Do you think that maybe history has misjudged ferrocement?
Well, ok, he enjoyed having it, she enjoyed the occasional sail on a fine day. Much as I did :)
I think this was rather like my grandparents' relationship RE: Loxley.
I recall my grandmother saying -- possibly quoting a well-known adage (though not well-known to me) -- that you could replicate all the joys of sailing by deliberately giving yourself food poisoning, and then standing under a cold shower and ripping up wads of 100 pound notes.
I have repeated her observation to several sailing sceptics who have agreed that my grandmother was a very perceptive woman.
I wonder if the shot of the fully rigged Loxley was taken in Mansion House Bay on Kawau?
Yes, I can confirm that you are correct – impressive memory, sir!
And a big thank you to everyone for their get well messages to Harold.
Harold the guest blogger photographed an hour or so ago in hospital. He had a pretty awful night and is not at all looking his best. My aunt is with him (last seen launching a boat in this post).
Incidentally neither my grandfather nor aunt have more than a few grey hairs (no dyeing, I've checked) -- a genetic freak that alas I have not inherited. Mind you, neither of them had my children.
What a wonderful story! Thank you Harold. And get better soon!
Thanks Lilith, will pass on your kind message...
I’ve never quite been able to love any ferro-cement boat since. (Apologies to Harold and Loxley, which looks lovely. I’ve fancied the H28 since a teen – Herreshoff is a legend.)
Yes, I’m a huge Herreshoff fan myself! But that certainly sounds like a very negative ferrocement experience there, Rob. I’ve seen a few ferrocement disasters myself – though also some great successes. Did you ever come across a boat called ‘Roc’ (I think), which was in one of the solo transtasman races – possibly still holding the record for slowest boat ever? That was quite an extraordinary design; what it lacked in speed it made up for in strength.
Loxley sailed very well, as I recall, a lot stiffer than the wooden Herreschoff boat that I've sailed in.
En passant the Neria plans included a dinghy that Herreschoff came up with to match the boat. It was rather small (Herreschoff called it a ‘pram’) but very good to row. Harold didn’t go the ferrocement route on the dighy, of course, I think it was built in kauri, which is a timber that he works with a lot.
What became of Loxley? Is this it, last year, about to head to Tonga?
Answering for Harold: Well-spotted, Ben! Yes, that's Loxley! Aluminium masts instead of the oregon now, I notice. Harold told me he'd had recent reports that Loxley has been spotted in Samoa, so this all ties together now... Incidentally, Harold had plans to tour the Pacific Islands, but it never quite came to pass. Very glad that Loxley made it, at any rate.