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The Skippers Log : Part One

Date: June 6th to 12th 2005

Distance : 131 miles

Weather : A couple of nice days then - more Rain.


Kolarudd Bastu

I'm fed up. I didn't want to come this year anyway. I was nice and comfy on the sofa back at home, and they drag me out to this dull, wet place. Last weekend it rained so much I was worried about getting under the bridges. Why cant they go somewhere nice and hot - like Spain?

The week started OK. We (they - I sulked in my bunk all day) had a nice little sail from Vasteras round to Kolarudd, near Enkoping. This turned out to be the 'outer harbour' for the Enkoping Sailing Club, and a nice little spot. The place had one of these wood-burning saunas, and they bagged it for a night. He even tried the traditional dip in the sea afterwards, but I noticed that with water temperature at 13 degrees, he didn't stay in long.

The following day was nice, so I ventured on the bridge for a bit. He kept worrying about me getting sunburnt, or 'fading' as he calls it, because apparently, I'm a 'classic'. Then they spoiled it by letting the deckhand on the bridge with me ('Salty' is the crew member who looks after the boat all winter). He's insufferably cheerful and ill disciplined so I let him have one with my glove (Don't ask). I got told off for beating up the crew. After a bit of fun getting under a low bridge (I gave them some tart advice), they met their friends at Upplands Väsby and then immediately disappeared to get pissed, or as the Swede's put it - 'dinner'.

I didn't see much of them the following day, I don't think they were all that up to it after 'dinner' the night before. They eventually motored up to Sigtuna, a mere 6 miles away, 'something easy' they said. The they disappeared into a local restaurant for another 'dinner'.

VasterasWe left Sigtuna early on Wednesday and had a long motor/drift all the way into Stockholm. In Stockholm, the way out to sea is via three lifting bridges and a lock. They managed to spectacularly cock it up by getting through one bridge before the authorities closed all of them for three hours, so we were trapped. To add to that, having finally (over three hours later) got through all but the last, the port authorities had a bit of a laugh and left them waiting at the last one for half-an-hour. On this trip, we saw four other British boats - I kept wanting to hitch a lift in case they were going home, but they chained me up down below.

I had a bit more of a sunbathe on the drift down to Vaxholm on Thursday, I kept up the pressure by regularly dispensing orders to 'get these sails set right' (the crew are useless). At Vaxholm we moored right next to the ferries which kept me awake all night. (He seemed more interested in the ferry timetables than anything.

GrindaFriday was crummy, so there was no chance of me getting out of my bunk. I'm told they got the sails out, but I didn't pay attention. We ended up at Grinda, famous for its restaurant. Grinda is an island about 20 miles out of Stockholm. If you want a meal, the thing to do appears to be to hire one of these 'rib charters'. They dress you up like Biggles, and put you on a rubber thing that does 40 knots in the pouring rain. Seems a bit much just to go out for lunch. It poured all night.

By this time the boat was getting a bit smelly, so I ordered them down to Bullando to do some washing.

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