36. Delay and treachery

Some readers of this blog may not know that it is called Natural Adventures because it was started as a digitisation of a journal I kept during an adventure I had in the Falkland Islands in 1988 when I was a young man. I was a fisheries scientist working for the Falkland Islands Government, and at this point in the Journal had spent several weeks at sea on a Japanese squid jigger called the Koei Maru 30, and very much looking forward to some shore leave.

For context, it might be worth reading chapter 1, ‘An ill wind‘.

The full series of posts are in the ‘Falkland Journal, 1988′ category of the Natural Adventures blog, to be read in reverse order (from the bottom up).

Wednesday 13 July 1988. Koei Maru 30

Well, I’m jolly batey (pissed-off) this morning. I have been told that in fact we’re staying out for a day longer than planned because, well, I don’t exactly understand why. Still, it has really pissed me (and many of the crew) off.

There was I this morning thinking that my sampling was the last I was going to do and feeling a little sad about it, when in fact I shouldn’t have done.

Actually, I’m not going to do a sample tomorrow – I’m going to be laid back and do gangion (jargon) counts only! So there!

I have just finished ‘One Hundred Years of Solitude’ what an incredible end – I never guessed. So Clever. I wish I could create something like that. A most enjoyable book, despite me taking so long to read it.

Thursday 14 July 1988. Koei Maru 30

Once again a miraculous sunrise – if nothing else, I shall miss these when I leave these islands for good.

I have been racing through William Golding’s ‘Rites of Passage’ which is a topical and easy to read book. I am enjoying it.

A small bird (a petrel of some sort – perhaps a white-chinned petrel) (more likely a storm petrel) was sitting in the squid gutter. I took some piccies of it – poor thing is very bedraggled – I don’t know how these birds get in such a state – perhaps it is a disease or something – I don’t know.

Storm Petrel, Koei Maru 30, South Atlantic, July 1988
Storm Petrel, Koei Maru 30, South Atlantic, July 1988

Well, tomorrow we really will be in Stanley and my feet shall embrace terra firma for the first time in 34 days – what a luxury it will be, not to have to compensate for thee rolling of the ship – it is wearisome in the extreme.

A cutting:

Basking shark article, Falkland Islands, July 1988
Basking shark article, Falkland Islands, July 1988

Perhaps the Marine Conservation Society will be relevant to me one day – I hope so – it is a body I admire and would like to be involved with – perhaps I’ll drop them a line.

Friday 15 July 1988. Koei Maru 30/Port Stanley, Emma’s Guest House

A dull day, but home time. Up early.

So many problems – arrived in Stanley – the crew were all in good spirits.

The meeting with the Fishing Master, JJ (the Falkland Fisheries chief officer), me, Okida (the vessel owner?) and Crag went dismally. JJ insisted on 120 days. What a bloody nightmare. Poor Phil will have to take the brunt of the crew’s discontent.

It is all such a cock up, and working on the KM30 will be a nightmare for observers.

SHIT, I feel like a traitor, and they treated me like one. So sad.

My desk at Fishops, Port Stanley, Falkland Islands, July 1988
My desk at Fishops, Port Stanley, Falkland Islands, July 1988

I listened to granny’s tape letter – so good to hear all her news. Very sweet. I love her all the more for hearing it.

Went to Sean’s for chops with Phil – got very pissed – Back to Anna and Sean’s and then very, very drunk – a nice welcome home.

Saturday 16 July 1988. Port Stanley, Emma’s Guest House

I’m feeling morose. I have just realised how short my UK leave is. It is depressing. I’m also concerned about the long-lining. I am so angry with the Ice Master, who is being incredibly immature and hurtful – the Fishing Master too.

Phoned home and D and they all sound well. D sounded a little down, I can’t wait to be with her again. I miss her so much – this week will be a trial.

Crag has handed in his notice and will be leaving in late August. This is very sad. After he goes, there’ll only be Sean, Phil, Drin, Dan and Liz. I’m also depressed because I’m going to be spending a lot more time at sea when I come back, on a ship that hates me!

35. Sunrises

Some readers of this blog may not know that it is called Natural Adventures because it was started as a digitisation of a journal I kept during an adventure I had in the Falkland Islands in 1988 when I was a young man. I was a fisheries scientist working for the Falkland Islands Government, and at this point in the Journal had spent several weeks at sea on a Japanese squid jigger called the Koei Maru 30, and very much looking forward to some shore leave.

For context, it might be worth reading chapter 1, ‘An ill wind‘.

The full series of posts are in the ‘Falkland Journal, 1988′ category of the Natural Adventures blog, to be read in reverse order (from the bottom up).

Sunday 10 July 1988, Koei Maru 30

Today is full of promise. The sun is shining after a glorious sunrise which began with a deep blue-purple and a sliver of a crescent moon in a cloudless starry sky. The orange glows in the East then began and heralded this lovely crisp day.

Sunrise, South Atlantic, Koei Maru 30, July 1988
Sunrise, South Atlantic, Koei Maru 30, July 1988

Another great bit of news is that I am to return to Port Stanley on the 14th, this coming Thursday. The Fishing Master also said that they would still be fishing when I returned from the UK and that they would have a party before returning to Japan, He is a real Jekyll and Hyde – I never quite know which mood I catch him in.

Today has fulfilled its promise, mainly in that it is nearly over. It has been sunny and clear, which lifts the depression which sets in during the gloom and overcast days. A few more Barry please. (an in joke with myself)

Now watching a Japanese war film – a little tactless I think, considering I’m English, but not to worry.

Japanese war film, doodle. Koei Maru 30, July 1988
Japanese war film, doodle. Koei Maru 30, July 1988

Monday 11 July 1988. Koei Maru 30

Having looked forward so much to today’s radio session, I actually forgot it in my forgetfulness… eh?

I was instead having lots of fun in the factory deck. Abe is a great bloke – always poking fun, always playing the monkey. Very funny. I’m glad that people aged 28 or so can still be complete fools, it is refreshing.

Wrote possibly my last letter for a while to Mum and Ad. Talked about Abe and Mr Chiba.

Couldn’t get to sleep at all, I’m so excited about getting back to Port Stanley.

Tuesday 12 July 1988. Koei Mau 30

After three and a half hours sleep, I went to hold 4 and took loads of ‘crew at work’ piccies. I also took some photographs of one of the loveliest sunrises I’ve ever witnessed. The wispy clouds touched with pink. I wish it was a slide not a print!

Crew preparing baskets for the day's fishing, Koei Maru 30, July 1988
Crew preparing baskets for the day’s fishing, Koei Maru 30, July 1988
Abe and Abe the Bosun, Koei Maru 30, July 1988
Abe and Abe the Bosun, Koei Maru 30, July 1988
Crew on deck 4, Koei Maru 30, July 1988
Crew on deck 4, Koei Maru 30, July 1988
Young crew member with squid-baited long-line baskets ready for deployment, Koei Maru 30, July 1988
Young crew member with squid-baited long-line baskets ready for deployment, Koei Maru 30, July 1988

Wrote a letter to D, telling her that I’m going completely bonkers. I am.

I am very tired, but have enjoyed today very much. The more I do this work, the more I enjoy it. Abe got me to top and tail and gut my hake today, which was a good compromise because it meant they readily gave them to me, and it also kept me busy.

I am mortified – I am devastated.

My final link with childhood – the bracelet I have worn every day since my A-levels has just broken – I feel torn and weak like Samson without hair. A great sadness for me. In tatters, I feel like crying but am too tired.

Bead bracelet broken, doodle, Koei Maru 30, July 1988
Bead bracelet broken, doodle, Koei Maru 30, July 1988

Actually, I don’t think I will ever sleep again. Or will I? 18:00hrs 12.7.88 – Bracelet RIP

Thursday doors – 4 November 2021

Doors 167 – Looe doors (see what I did there?), Cornwall – Part 1

Good morning doorsters. This week, I am returning to Cornwall for some doors I photographed during a sea fishing pilgrimage I make with a great friend every year. We spent a day fishing on the ‘banjo’ pier in the seaside town of Looe, and of course I couldn’t resist the opportunity to take a few door snaps while we were there. No fish were killed in the making of this blog post, all were returned to the sea carefully.

So here are the doors, and one or two fishing pictures to get you in the mood:

Church House door, Looe, Cornwall, October 2021
Church House door, Looe, Cornwall, October 2021

One, two, three fishing gear doors, Looe, Cornwall, October 2021
One, two, three fishing gear doors, Looe, Cornwall, October 2021

Multiple windows and door, Looe, Cornwall, October 2021
Multiple windows and door, Looe, Cornwall, October 2021

Black door, Looe, Cornwall, October 2021
Black door, Looe, Cornwall, October 2021

Seaway door and mermaid knocker, Looe, Cornwall, October 2021
Seaway door and mermaid knocker, Looe, Cornwall, October 2021

Fishing from banjo pier, Looe, October 2021
Fishing from banjo pier, Looe, October 2021

Ballan Wrasse, Looe, October 2021
Ballan Wrasse, Looe, October 2021

So that’s it for another week. More from this series next week, all being well. Have a great weekend.

If you have made it this far, you probably like doors, and you really ought to take a look at the No Facilities blog by Dan Anton who has taken over the hosting of Thursday Doors  from Norm 2.0 blog. Links to more doorscursions can be found in the comments section of Dan Anton’s Thursday Doors post.

by Scooj

Villainous bastards

.

The Covid spoofers

‘fish’ under NHS guise

there’s no redemption

.

by Scooj

I was by prompted to write this on receiving a very convincing NHS email to make an appointment for a vaccination, based on ‘family genetics or medical history’. As a healthy 57 year old, this didn’t ring true, but I nearly fell for it. Some people really are the scum of the earth, may they rot in hell.

34. Close to home

Some readers of this blog may not know that it is called Natural Adventures because it was started as a digitisation of an adventure I had to the Falkland Islands in 1988 when I was a young man. I was a fisheries scientist working for the Falkland Islands Government and at this point in the Journal had spent several weeks at sea on a Japanese squid jigger called the Koei Maru 30.

For context, it might be worth reading chapter 1, ‘An ill wind‘.

The adventure continues… (prompted by Cannibalrabbit to post about the Falklands again)

 

Thursday 7 July 1988. Koei Maru 30

Once again we aren’t fishing – Today I think it was more of a holiday than bad weather, although the waves are quite big.

It has been a newspaper reading and letter reading day. It is weird, but I am loitering in late May and early June at the moment – London marathon and things like that.

I suppose Wimbledon is happening round about now. I feel detached from summer, it snowed for a while here today, so I find it difficult to connect.

Africa still calls. I yearn.

17 days and I will be home – Yahoo.

In reading my letters I discover that my mother writes excellent letters, they are a real inspiration. Alex too wrote a very good letter indeed.

Is Jasper really getting hitched? I sincerely hope not. Getting married has to be a questionable act.

“Girl you really got me going” – The Kink

Abe, crewman, Koei Maru 30, Falkland Islands, July 1988
Abe, crewman, Koei Maru 30, Falkland Islands, July 1988

 

Friday 8 July 1988. Koei Maru 30

Spoke with John Barton this morning – it seems he wants me back by the 15th or so, that is fine by me, but when I broke the news to the Fishing Master he was not at all pleased – sometimes he is such a miserable sod.

The weather is still pretty poor, although there has been no snow or rain today.

There is so little that I can write about these days, I think boring is the phrase or word I would use to describe my life at the moment.

I pity Phil having to take over from me – I reckon He’ll get a pretty hard time of it.

 

Saturday 9 July 1988. Koei Maru 30.

Well if we do get into Port Stanley on the 15th then this is probably my last Saturday ever on the Koei Maru 30 – a joyous occasion, since each day of the week I spend here will now be my last of that day. I am scoffing my rations accordingly but will leave a few bits and bobs for Phil.

Why am I so bloody organised? I have devised loads of forms for Phil to fill out while he’s on board and have given him tons of info about how to get by. The truth being told, I don’t trust that he’ll do as good a job as me because he probably doesn’t give a monkey’s.

Coastal snow, Falkland Islands, July 1988
Coastal snow, Falkland Islands, July 1988

I have rediscovered my 0.70 Rotring pen which I used to often use for my lecture notes and diary etc back at Newcastle. Oh God, I miss my undergraduate days, they were a lot of fun and very exciting. The thing I’ve noticed most about being here is that I am not a kid any more and I can never be again – this is my biggest regret in life. If I had a wish, I would wish I could begin again – suffer the pains of school, puberty, embarrassment and the joys of discovery, adventure, exercise, childish fun.

It may sound pathetic, but I also consider a lot how good it would be to be a father – my time will come, but I am very excited about having children and being everything they could want from a father. Enough pondering. (Little did I know)