Well it’s safe to say despite the keen interest from the apprentice lads in this blog, whilst there are engines to tinker with and boats to build they just can’t tear themselves away to put pen to paper. Being the practical types, words aren’t exactly their strong point, apart from when it comes to the healthy workshop banter that echoes around the yard from 8 till 4. So writing a piece for the new blog has been designated to the only girl in the workshop. A bit like taping up the rowing gig plug…we do it every time we begin the hull of a new gig but for some unknown reason the lads just can’t do it, I have concluded that it’s a bit like wrapping Christmas presents, it’s just not a man thing, they just can’t get the knack, so rather than painfully watch them get tangled up in parcel tape I just get on and do it, which is what I have spent today doing and even if I do say so myself…it’s probably the best one yet.
Coming to work is not a chore but more of a pleasure, there is always a new project to start or a favourite one to finish but like all jobs the boring bits need doing too (taping up the plug for example) and because we are the young, strong and nimble apprentices they are generally designated to us, much to our joy. However the progression in the workshop never stops, we never stop learning and I don’t think we ever will. I have been building the backbone for the rowing gig which is made up of 14 components and fitting them all together is a bit like trying to do a Rubiks Cube. Having a day off to tape up the plug was a bit of a relief really, it was nice to do something I didn’t have to think about, just keep taping and contemplate the meaning of life the world and the universe. I was pretty nervous when I first started the project, after having seen so many people before me produce them to such perfection, it is a lot to live up to. It is almost complete though, after weeks of hard work I am now doing the final shaping to the transom and dare I say it I’m pretty chuffed with it. It’s not perfect and it has taken longer than it should have done but that’s because I’m learning on the job. That’s the great thing about the Pioneer Sailing Trust, we aren’t just practicing with scraps or building miniatures, it’s the real deal, and we are actually churning out real boats. Seeing something you’ve built when it’s out on the water is the most satisfying thing. Sat on the quay at Wivenhoe having a pint with a some friends and shouting “ look look, it’s my boat! I built that!”
Anyway our gig leader Dunstan will come through the door in a minute and ask why the transoms unfinished so I better get back to my chisels and get this keel done so Rowhedge can get out on the water.