Sea story

Tony D
13th May 2004, 20:39
Drapes once did a trip to sea on the old cargo ship the SS BESSY GUSSET, she was outbound from Birkenhead with a cargo of electric kettles for Nova Scotia.
Mid Atlanic, on a stormy night she struck a floating reef, this collision bent old Bess's bow somewhat, and we quickly discovered she would no longer steer a true straight course, and commenced to go in a great circle no matter how hard the wheel was put over.
The old man was a wiley seadog of the old school, he quickly put us about and ordered full astern on the engine, so **** first we sailed on,though it took us nine weeks to cover the last 100 leagues as Bessy being old had a raked stern and didn't like a following sea in her face.
We eventually, nearly out of salt tack and biscuits, made it to Canada, and straight way sailed her into dry dock to have the bow hammered flat again, and the propellor refixed, as going astern for so long had caused it to unscrew and it was hanging on the shaft by a single thread.
Now winter in Nova Scotia can be a bit nippy, as soon as we had entered the dry dock and the gates shut, and before the plug could be pulled and the water emptied out, it froze solid.
The Betty Gusset was now in a fine kettle of fish, frozen solid in a block of ice, two hundred feet long and sixty feet wide by thirty deep.
The old captin called called all hands aft to number five hatch top and addressed us thus.
"Well lads as yer see we is in a fine pickle, if we doesn't discharge this cargo and make it back to Birkenhead for another load of kettles the old Bessy will be sold for scrap, so if anybody has any ideas pipe up now"
Well as you folks know, Drapes is no fool, so he quickly sussed out the solution the to our problem was , we rigged up 170.000 electric kettles around the dry dock edge fired em up, and melted the ice around the edges of the dock, we then hired a tug which towed us and the ice block we was stuck in, right out of that dry dock into open water.
Took us seventeen weeks to get back to Birkenhead across the Western Ocean though, and the stokers had to work like, err colored folk, keepin the her old boilers fired as our little steam engine was never meant to propel a ship encased in such a huge block of ice,
The old Bessy Gusset made it though, the last of the ice melting and falling away when we rounded the Mull Of Kintyre.
The only black mark agin us was a marconigram from the agent in Nova Scotia complaining that these kettles didnt look new at all.
That and having to sail backwards up the Manchester ship canal, as in all the excitement we had forgotten about the bend in the bow.
One good thing though, the propeller had screwed itself back on to the shaft because we was now going the right way.
:hey:

Ian
13th May 2004, 20:54
Bloody marvellous Tony!
They must have made a right racket if they was all whistlin' kettles...........
Thanks for the entertainment.
Ian
(Admin)

Tony D
13th May 2004, 22:03
here is another one, and like the first it is perfectly true.


Drapes also did a trip on the converted old five mast Brigantine Aggie Clack, we was tied up at Vera Cruz taking on a cargo of beans for Galveston.
The straw hatted dockers carried sacks of these beans in a strange hopping gait, which the crew of the Aggie found amusing, British sailor always lean over the rail and chuckle at the strange ways of yer foreigners.
Anyway after the beans was all stowed nice and neat in the holds, the agent sent five hundred sacks of sand with orders to place these on top of the bean sacks, this puzzled us greatly,and should have aroused our suspicion but we always respected the wishes of native folk, so we puts the sacks of sand all neat and shipshape in a layer on top of the beans.
Four days out Drapes is sittin on the poop deck sippin his cocoa and shootin the breeze when the vessel gives a strange lurch, her stern lifts ight out of the water and our old propeller commences to spin like crazy in the open air, the young galley boy Enoch who is a plump young cove, shoots six foot into the air and lands with a scream on his stern bone.
Drapes hears the old man ring all stop on the engine telegraph and Aggie lies dead in the water. except she kept bobbing up and down in a very alarming manner, all hands gathers for a meeting, and old Captin Scrote addresses us thus.
"Well lads we is in a fine pickle,them beans is mexican jumpin beans, one of the most dangerous cargos afloat,they has all woke up and are jumping in unison,we has to figure out a way to put them back to sleep or the Old Aggie Clack is doomed".
Now Drapes usta read a lot when he was a lad at sea,and had read that yer Mexican jumpin bean was fond of music,they possesses a fine sense of rythme and will jump to a tune that takes their fancy,but once awake they is impossible to put back to sleep Drapes informs the old man of this fact and we hatches a plot,
Drapes with his tin whistle, at number 1 hatch , the bosun with his jews harp at number 2, Enoch the galley boy at number three with his mouth organ and so on.
We commences to play the mexican hat song , but the motion gets even worse and the Aggie is in grave danger of floundering what with leaping completly clear of the sea and splashin back down with a crash.
Drapes suddenly twigs to the cause of this and shouts for all hands to play different tunes, this does the trick,as the beans in the different holds are now listening to different tunes they no longer jump in a syncronised manner and the overall motion is cancelled out.
So old Captin Scrote rings ahead full and off the old Aggie goes, the rest of the trip was without incident, apart from Drapes having to stand on number1 1 hatch cover playin the the sky boat song for the next five weeks.
We did get in the record books for the fastest cargo discharged in Galverston though,once alongside we strips off the hatch covers and the sand bags, the bosun leaps up with his fiddle and playes the Over The Hills and Far Away and that cargo all jumps out of the hatch and on to the docks without a hand layed on em.
:hey:

Ian
27th May 2004, 23:15
Great story Tony!
Wot you been smoking? Don't believe a bleedin' word of it........

Any more?
Cheers,
Ian
(Admin). :clap:

The 2nd. Mate
1st September 2010, 19:26
Neither do I!! A jews harp is not a musical instrument so I reckon it would have had no effect :-}

Cheers

Ian [this one, not the other one!!]

Klaatu83
4th September 2010, 14:14
They say the only difference between a Fairy Tale and a Sea Story is that
a Fairy Tale always begins with "Once upon a time..." and ends "...and they lived happily ever after"; while a Sea Story always begins with "This is no sh-t" and always ends "...and it's been f---ked up ever since".

sidsal
4th September 2010, 20:33
Itt was a dark and stormy night and the Captain said to the Mate _ "Tell me a story" and the Mate began - "It was a dark and stormy night and the Captain said to the Mate _ "Tell me a story" and the Mate began - "It was a dark and stormy night and the Captain said to the Mate - "Tell me a story" and the Mate began - "It was a dark and stormy night and the Captain said to the Mate - "Tell me a story - " and the Mate began - .................................................. .................................................. .. etc

Pat Kennedy
4th September 2010, 20:54
Set them to music and they would rival 'The Irish Rover'