16. Scissors, Paper, Stone

Saturday 23 April 1988, Koei Maru 30

I keep wondering if I heard correctly on the radio that I am going to Montevideo, the only thing I remember about the conversation is that I will have a long-lining trip before I go to the UK, which confirms that I must be going to Monte. Ace!

I hope Arsenal won today and the top five clubs all lost.

I really miss Saturdays at home – either at a match or watching old Des and the teleprinter on TV.

Sunday 24 April 1988, Koei Maru 30

The first thing I learnt today was how to play oli oli iddle (Scissors, paper, stone) in Japanese:

the paper is called ‘Pa’

the scissors called ‘Choki’

the stone is called ‘Gu’

Just before that, I knackered my back lifting a huge basket of squid. Bloody foolish. It hurts a lot. I took an asprin and had a fag. I hate to admit it, but I’ve started smoking rollies…only about one a day, if that. I don’t like them, but I am going through a rebellious phase and they make me feel the part of the wild marine biologist, beard and all.

The reason the crew played oli oli iddle, was because the loser had to provide a box of chocolates as a snack for everyone. The loser was Abe radar. He was amusedly pissed off.

I have spent at least two hours drawing onto pieces of paper the numbers 31-35 and 36-40! This is for labeling the boxes of squid and refers to the number of pieces per box.


I asked for a crate of coke or juice earlier today. I think it has caused as bit of a fracas. I know I was being talked about by Nananuma, the captain and other crew members, by the glances which were cast my way during the conversation. It is very unnerving, especially when you can’t communicate things properly.

Monday 25 April 1988, Koei Maru 30

For the first time on this voyage, I kept the same hours as the crew and it was good to see the sunrise. I radioed Stanley at 10:00 and spoke to John and confirmed the Montevideo plan, so there is no doubt in my mind. It is on, as far as things can be at Fishops.

I was on a real high before going to bed, but now don’t feel so sure. I miss home. Still I should be back in a matter of two months or so. After that being out here will be easy.

Yesterday was a ‘holiday’ for the crew – a rough sea and an appalling catch. I was lucky to get even one sample.

I have got to get my letter-writing act together, I am falling well behind.

Yesterday I developed my own clinometer. It is built using the window (porthole) catch as the pointer and a piece of paper in the shape of an arc as the dial. I think it is ace. It is graduated with 15 degrees, 10 degrees, 10 degrees.

Tuesday 26 April 1988, Koei Maru 30

O-Zone paperback from my voyage

I can’t honestly believe that I wrote nothing today – what terrible neglect. Probably because I began reading O-Zone and also watched the film ‘Parker’ – a great film. Not much else to say.


44. Stokes Croft, corner wall (1)

Heading North on Cheltenham Road from the centre, you will see arguably the most striking and iconic mural that Bristol has to offer.

Stinkfish, Stokes Croft, Bristol, September 2015
Stinkfish, Stokes Croft, Bristol, September 2015

This beautiful portrait is by the Colombian artist Stinkfish, and is at the hub of so much other brilliant street art in the area. It is funny how we become accustomed to just seeing things but not noticing them. Today I stopped and took a really good look at this and it is absolutely outstanding.

Stinkfish, Stokes Croft, Bristol, September 2015
Stinkfish, Stokes Croft, Bristol, September 2015

There is a bit more background to this mural, which was painted in June 2012, here.


43. Dean Lane (2)

I pretty much walked past this small poster, but stopped in my tracks and took a closer look.

23 Magpies, Dean Lane, Bristol, September 2015
23 Magpies, Dean Lane, Bristol, September 2015

This is a really interesting wheatpaste by an artist called ’23 Magpies’. I think the artist is based in Gloucester, given that most of the works I can find are from there. My guess is that this was posted up during Upfest 2015, as it is only a short walk away from North Street. I have not been able to find out much about the artist, but some other works are shown here.