Well here I dus be again wiv da next episode in da life of da Lexie (oh yes and mum and dad I supposes). Well guess what? It is 2004 and dis be ma year! Is true! I be born in September 2004. I don't be wiv mum and dad until 2005 though (booo) but I let you know all bout dat later onsies.
So, it's January 2004 and is bloody blinkin cold. Mum and dad are spendin their first winter on da boat and are findin out many fings bout life on a boat in winter, let me tell you!
Dad's job for 2004 was to cut down the a-frame and remove the winch room and winch. He worked over da winter usin da autocad software to design the new look for Atlantis - trawler to trawler yacht (or expedition yacht as he decided later coz it sound posher - or should dat be more posh!). Here is da a-frame wiv her supportin arms being cut off (you can see ma dad in da right hand side):
Mum was going back and forth to work each day (except Wednesdays remember!). The winter mornings were dark and cold. The evenings were ... yep you guessed it dark and cold!
Dad had to staple chicken wire to the steps leading up to da pontoon after mum managed to slip off da top step and go all the way to the bottom (10 wooden splintery steps covered in slimey mud) when she came home one night. If she had not been wearin her rucksack she would have gone straight into the mud! Luckily that and her ample bottom had ensured she got wedged between the steps and the boat moored next to us at the same wot woz called Mamba!
Here do be a picture of da deadly steps you can just see dem in the corner of da photo (this one was taken after dad had removed the A-frame, winch and mast):
After that lickle incident, Dad put chicken wire on da steps and they would meet at the the top each evenin to make sure she made it home in one piece!
Another fing wot they found out was dat in da mornins when was cold and frosty the pontoon wot they did walk on to go to work (dad did accompany mum for healf and safety to da car) woz very slippery! Mum would slip and slide along it. Is long way as you can see from the photo below. She would grip onto the white railings and sort of slide of her feet along so she not fall over. Have you spotted a theme? Mum is at olympic gold standard when it comes to fall into, off of, up, around, down and out of anything!
Layers, another thing they got used to doin. They had heat on the boat but where there was no insulation the temperature would get down to about -4 inside! You couldn't touch the walls in case you wud stick to them! So, they got to wearing four or five layers and got used to bein cold. Course, if they went to visit they friends in houses they would be sweatin coz they woz wearin lots of clothes. Becoz was cold and damp on da boat they would start steamin if they got anywhere warm!
In da mornins da water would be frozen so mum would fill up some big containers wiv water da night before so they would have water for washin and drinkin tea. Atlantis has got big water tank on but they didnt use it then becoz it had to be cleaned and av pump fitted.
Slowly, Winter turned to Spring and fings started to warm up. Dad worked out everyfin wot he needed to take down da a-frame, remove the winch room and winch. Dis was da first really big job dad had on da boat. They never ad da crane or any of da equipments wot they got now so dad start off wiv small metal cutter (wot is called a plasma cutter) and a small winch. They dus look back and larf now at how they managed it! Look at my dad sittin right at da top of da a-frame which is long long way up (he dussnt like heights can you believes dat!):
Dad did start to cut one side then da over side so dat the legs was freed from da middle bit. Let me know if I's gettin too technical for you heehee! Mum say her heart woz in her mouf when dad was up there! He did av harness on but you can't really see it in the pictures.
He worked on da left leg first and cut so dat it would fall down and land on da other leg. He had worked out exactly what was gonna appen, and ow it was gonna fall and everyfin. He had to be sure dat it fall where he want and not hit da boat next to us or da pontoon or any people! He did a perfect job as you can see in dis photo:
More cuttin and winchin and winchin and cuttin and stoppin and checkin and winchin and cuttin - phew I's gettin tired just writing it! Then da other leg was ready to go. Mum say da noise was incredible and people in da marina was comin out of their boats to see what as appenin! Timber!!!!!
The next leg lands safely:
Dad was ready to move onto the winch and winch room removal which you can see here. You can just see my dad in da corner using da cutting equipment:
Once the room surroundin the winch was taken away, he was left wiv da winch to cut apart. Dis was more difficult and he did use a fing wot he call a gas axe (is called oxy-acetalene cutting torch). Da winch was big and very heavy:
Dad cut it up into bits and our new friend dat we had just met who was good at gettin rid of scrap metal did take the bits away for us. His name is Jim and he has only got one leg but he is da most mobile person wot we eva met wiv one leg!
It took dem bout two munfs to complete. You might be wundrin wot mum woz doin during this time, apart from goin to work? Sunbathing on da bow dad said! Cheek! Was her job to firewatch, tidy up (dat is not polishing or vacuuming!) da steel and move it round da boat for pickin up. She had to take rubbish to da tip and make sure dad had plenty of cups of tea and big fings to eat to keep up his energy too!
I fink I might have to stop there. Dat is only half the year and I ain't even beens born yet! Maybe dis blog is goin to be a bit longer dan anticipated! I let you have breather! Fanx for readin.
So, as the great Dave Allen did say - goodnight, thank you and may your god go with you.
Please let me know if we is borin you yet!