OCC Port Officers
Sept 2012 Jenny Crickmore-Thompson
where often no-one can see them – and we have some really exciting, enthusiastic, pro-active Port Officers. I’d like to give kudos and recognition to those who deserve it, so if you’d send me a snippet of your recent contacts with port officers, I’d appreciate it. Of course that means if you’ve had a bad experience, we need to hear about it too, to see if it can be rectified!
Do contact your POs when you're sailing through, even if just to drop in for a social drink - they'd love to see you. Following is some news from our hard-working Port Officers.
Pip and Judy Wick, POs for Brooklin ME and Allen and Cathy Rae, POs for Beaufort, SCarolina have gone far beyond the call of duty, acting as "mother-ships" for part of my extended family during a week-long cruise through Penobscot Bay - Al Shaheen was not built for 6!
Catia Carvalho, PO Madeira has just picked up from the OCC Forum on the website that several boats would be travelling her way, so sent them an email saying:" It would be great to receive, in my beautiful archipelago, the OCC members planning to cross the Atlantic this year! Why not gather at Madeira Archipelago? Visit Porto Santo, Madeira and the reservation Islands Desertas & Selvagens. My idea is to pick up your initial contact and spread out the word to other OCC members and also CA members (because I’m HLR for Cruising Association). More boats, more fun!
Gary Naigle and Greta Gustavson, POs for Norfolk, VA, frequently have impromptu suppers when boats tie up at their pier. At the most recent were Michael and Ann Hartshorn (UK yacht Nimue), Scott and Kitty Kuhner (US yacht Tamure), Martin and Elizabeth Bevan (UK yacht Caduceus), and prospective OCC member, Ken Smith (US yacht Loon). A good time was had by all--and do you think they told any cruising stories?!
They also took the opportunity to welcome into their dock Lewis Colam, a 24 year old Brit who is rowing up the waterway from Miami to New York to raise money for Alzheimers research.
“We were very happy to have him tie up here and share a little bit of home because we had two British yachts here at the time. Martin Bevan on Caduceus ‘piped’ Lewis in,” says Gary.
David Blackburn and Julia Aspin, POs for Rosas, Spain and not exactly on a main route, do an annual lunch.
"Rosas is not really on the track through the Med as most yachts stop in the Balearics and then go on E or W, so this is our way of jazzing things up. Started 2 years ago with people we knew within driving distance. I keep the meal simple and cook in advance. This year we had a spicy pork casserole with horseradish mashed potato and salad, followed by fresh strawberries and cheese. Drinks are beer, wine or G & T + juices/water. This year we expanded by emailing anyone we thought might be in the area, on board or ashore. We gained one sailing couple who had left their boat in Morocco and were keen to visit Barcelona, one couple who live in UK but have a holiday home in France, and another couple who live in Paris but had their boat in a yard in S. France. It costs us a bit but not much and we always seem to gain on the wine! We just have a great time and it's not hard work."
And a reminder from Gulshan Rai, PO Mumbai (who may be seeing more boats due to the piracy goings-on these days!)
"I see hardly any cruisers, rarely, which is strange as India evokes nostalgia, and millions of British come to India (by air) to have a look at a fabulous empire lost, yet no one follows a 'passage to india' which is a milk run for yachts. And the empire’s most majestic yacht club in the east (Royal Bombay Yacht Club) confers hon. visiting membership to visiting yachts for 90 days".
And even if there are not a lot of boats calling, possibly the easiest but daily most effective way of “flying the flag”, from a comment on facebook from a fellow OCCer, Richard Nicolson: "So nice to see the the OCC Flying Fish PO burgee flying from the staff of the Cowes PO's home (adjacent to the ferry terminal) as I left a blustery Cowes on the Redjet ferry this morning."