Wednesday, 30 September 2009
Tenacious Mast Climb
Well hello again,
Welcome to blog post 2:
Sorry I have not posted sooner, I have managed to find lots of other things to do.
Tonight I was planning on playing 'Battlefield Bad Company' with my Brother-In-Law but the PlayStation decided it would like to do an update before letting me play, A reasonable 269mbs but for some reason its seems to be taking about an hour. I don't have a slow connection, I think its just the PlayStation's way of telling me its time to update my blog.
So here we are.
On the 19th September 2009 I climbed 130ft to the top of the mast of The Tenacious, A tall ship as they call them.
Why did I do this? Well, It goes back to a CYESC (Christian Youth Enterprises Sailing Centre) open evening where they were displaying the new boat they have purchased. This boat is to replace the Gerald Daniel, An old Mine Sweeper as the accommodation for the visitors to the sailing centre.
At this event my father mentioned he was doing a sponsored mast climb to raise money for The boat project along with The Jubilee Sailing Trust. I thought this was a cool idea and not one to be outdone by a 50+ year old man I enthusiastically signed up. I had just one week to raise over £150.
On a side I have recently been thinking about 'missed opportunities' not in a regretful way but more in a 'Its likely I will regret not taking this opportunity' sort of way. So I figured, Why not, Will be fun! something to talk about, Like I say to my friend JudeAludeI 'I like to feel I have accomplished something each weekend'
Anyway. On the following Monday I started hassling people at work, Sent round an email many people ignored so took my 'charity work' to them, Its very hard to say no when asked directly it seems. I managed to raise around £80 the first day, and a decent amount the second. Later in the week I sent round a 'reminder' email followed by some more 'persuasion' and managed to collect A grand total of £177 (And a cup full of coppers I have yet to count out, you know who you are!)
So this is really happening then! I actually have to do this now. I'm actually a little scared now.
When the Saturday came I had to be at my parents house at 9am for a lift into London, this is not cool for a Saturday. The reason for this was that we were dropping my brother off at the airport on the way, he was going to Jersey for a conference, my mother would not stop fussing over him at the airport, do you have this, make sure you don't do this, you know the sort of things.
Once we had pulled my mother back into the car we headed on our way, We arrived at canary wharf at about 12:15pm. and had a VERY rushed tour of Tenacious with my Uncle Bill (A volunteer for Jubilee Sailing Trust) The tour started as soon as we got there, before we even had time to say hello or visit the lavatory, classic Uncle Bill style!
Once this enjoyable but slightly rushed tour was over we got 'Harnessed up' this was uncomfortable and took a particularly long time, then we ate some sarnies.
By about 1-ish it was time to climb, sort briefing about not dropping cameras as they can kill people and some sort of anecdote about dropping something you having to pay £1 for ever piece it breaks into and we were off!
The first section was pretty easy, Although I was expecting to be clipped on in some way, at this point I didn't really feel the need for the overly long harness fitting? Once near the first platform we clipped on for a short time to ensure we get onto the deck safely. Lets hope we are clipped on as we get a little higher.We hung around on this platform with Uncle Bill and a nice girl who told me a similar story about dropping something and having to buy beer for the crew that I didn't really listen to.
We then clipped on for a little bit wile we climbed round and onto the next ladder type thing. I had a little 'moment' on this section, I made the mistake of looking down a little too long, I stopped for a minute to regain my composure, Come on now. lets get on with this, the platform is only up there!
Once on the second platform we waited a little longer, Spoke with a nice lady called Mary for a short time.
At this point we must have been around 110ft up. We were then asked if we were ready to undertake the next stage, This was where my father got a little 'squeaky' Do we clip on he said, to a wire of some sort? NO said the instructor, in a sort of condescending way. Er... OK said my dad.
At this point I decided to not show I was just as worried, So I started up the next section.
This was actually quite scary. Around 120ft up. hanging on a sketchy rope ladder. About thinner than the distance between my wrist and elbow, getting smaller as we climbed higher.
We did get to the top though. My dad managed to tap the top of the mast, And I'm quite proud of the fact I managed to touch the top of the tassel on the mast! In fact afterwards I wished I had climbed right on top of the mast, but to be honest It was quite high enough as it was.
Coming down was much easier than I thought it would be, and quick also.
when we touched the ground we were given a certificate and enjoyed a nice cold beer in the ships mess.
All in all a brilliant day and a brilliant experience!
Anyone who read my last post, The Liar by Stephen Fry was a really good story, I would recommend it. I have now moved onto 'The Hippopotamus' Another story by Stephen Fry. I'm currently on CD5 of 8 and its very enjoyable so far.
p.s. I did manage to play Battlefield in the end, Thats why I am posting this Blog at 01:33am!
Thanks for reading