If I may, a quick thank you for those welcome comments from Oliver Boyle, Nozz’s brother, and from Bill Nance. We always welcome feedback – apart from anything else it re-assures me that someone is listening!
Meanwhile Dick Durham has found a superb poem as part of his Yachting Monthly writings, in this case coming to me through the RSS feed. “Yachting Monthly can reveal”, writes Dick, “one of the shanties which will be performed for the Old Gaffers Association’s 50th anniversary. It is written by cartoonist Mike Peyton, 92, who is an East Coast section member and the only original founder member of the OGA left alive. Performed by the Brandy Hole Shantymen, it is a poignant dirge of seven verses”.
Here is (part of) the The East Coast Old Gaffer: – you will have to go to the Yachting Monthly website or (gasp) buy the magazine to see the Ode in its full glory. I’m guessing from the structure and rhyming scan that it is sung to the tune of that well know folk song “I’m a rambler, I’m a rambler, from Manchester Way….” It goes along the lines of ….
“I’ve sailed all over, from Orford to Dover, Boulogne and Breskens as well,
I’ve brought up in the Quarters, and Walton Backwaters, been sick as a dog with the swell.
My blankets have often been sodden, in the bunk where I rest my old head,
But rather than pack up my sailing, I think I would rather be dead!
“I’m a sailor, a sailor from Maldon Town way,
I get all my pleasure when I’m under way.
I may be commuting on Mondays, but I sail my old gaffer on Sundays.”
Excellent, Mike Peyton and thank you Dick Durham for keeping us entertained. Fingers in ears, lads… and…. SINGING!
The picture, by the way is just a superbly bearded fishing trip-boat Skipper who caught my eye in Kinvarra (Co. Galway) whilst tracking hookers, so it is kind of Gaffer related even though it may have nothing to do with the OGA.