Following a short but extremely successful visit to Lowestoft we are now back at sea and have commenced our passage across the North Sea.
Welcome to day 9 of our voyage. Following a short but extremely successful visit to Lowestoft we are now back at sea and have commenced our passage across the North Sea. The weather gods have smiled upon us and we currently have favourable south westerlies which allowed us to set a full press of sail just after our departure from Lowestoft and we are now sailing along comfortably at 8-9kts.
Prior to reading this evening’s Captains Log which has been wonderfully written by Grace and Stuart I had intended to tell you all about our visit to Lowestoft but I really don’t think that I can match what these guys have written so I won’t try. I always say that the entries in the Captains Log are better coming from the World Voyage Crew than myself because they get to experience so many new, exciting and unique things and I for one never get sick of hearing about their adventures. Enjoy!
I would like to pass on a special thank you to the wonderful community of Lowestoft who made our visit so memorable. It was special for all of us to be able to bring Young Endeavour back to where she was built and we thank you for our amazing ship, your warm hospitality and friendship.
Until tomorrow, take care.
CAPTAINS LOG 20 JUL 15
Our visit to sleepy Lowestoft was an historic moment for Young Endeavour, and we felt honoured to play our part. We arrived yesterday at 0800, at almost the same time when Young Endeavour left Lowestoft on her maiden voyage to Australia in 1987. Despite arriving on a cold and rainy morning, the sun quickly appeared to warm our cold hands. The local welcome was just as warm. As we disembarked onto the newly built quay, locals greeted us with smiles and curious faces. We were given leave to explore the town and enjoy the local festival. The local community remembered Young Endeavour after all this time and many were eager to hear stories of her travels. One local man spotted our shirts and approached us to tell us his story when he worked on the original build, “staying up all night” to finish laying the decking. As we explored the town we quite literally stumbled upon a small embossed brass plate signifying the most easterly point in Britain, underneath one of the many hundreds of majestic wind turbines that dominate the scenery around the Thames and Channel waters.
Our official duties began at 1700 when the Mayor of Lowestoft and distinguished guests arrived to open the new quay, which was rebuilt after the ageing structure suddenly collapsed. Captain Gav cut the ribbon and invited guests on board for a sparkling sunset reception. Adorned only by a small branch of gum-leaves and a plastic kangaroo, the Young Endeavour was the star of the show. The youth crew acted as proud tour guides of our home-away-from-home. We particularly enjoyed meeting budding young pilot and marine cadet, Kay, just starting his GCSE studies and looking forward to experiencing sail training for himself. We’ve become attached to our ship, and appreciative of the work our experienced staff put in on a daily basis. Our genius chefs, Marcos and Adrian, put on a masterclass of finger food and delicious delights, including kangaroo skewers which the locals devoured with ferocity. We’re lucky to have two of the best chefs in the Navy!
After the reception we were dismissed from our duties for some leisure time. Embracing our not so hidden competitive sprits, we set course for the nearest bowling alley for a fiery game just before closing time. (Editor’s note: I won. That’s me, Stuart. Me. The winner. Yay!) We sang along to the best of 90s music, and let our hair down. If sailing doesn’t work out, a few of us can look forward to a blossoming career on Broadway!
For a handful of the crew, the highlight of the night was exchanging stories and gifts with gentlemen at a small corner pub on the way back to the ship. The Welcome on High Street now proudly displays an original 2015 World Voyage polo shirt as the centrepiece behind the bar. John, a well-travelled retired sailor, recalled the hospitality of Australians on his adventures, and repaid the favour in generous spirit.
After a late start this morning, some of the eager, energetic crew members braved the ice cold sea (is it really summer?) to catch a wave before we set sail for Norway. We departed on schedule with the assistance of a pilot and farewelled the community lining the harbour to see us on our way.
Within minutes of reaching open water, sailmaster Kenny had us scrambling across the decks to begin our first crew challenge, setting a full set of sails simultaneously. This moment was particularly special as it was the first time the youth crew took complete charge of the call. Tim Mew led us in his booming tenor as we hauled on the sheets and checked away on the lines. There’s nothing quite as impressive as seeing a beautiful ship flying under a full press of sails. The yards take on an even more imposing, yet graceful watch over the crew on the deck, puffing after their hard work. A slight luff every now and then keeps us on our toes, on watch here on the bridge. As we write, our heading is due east, leaving behind a glorious setting sun. The sea is calm and the sky is crystal clear, as we glide along at a graceful nine knots.
We’ve all become a close knit group of friends on this voyage. It’s remarkable how effectively everyone is working together, but not necessarily surprising when you consider the calibre, intelligence, and warm spirits of our crew. We look forward to the journey across the North Sea, to the tall ships and adventures beyond.
Love to all, from Grace and Stuart.