Sailing to Purgatory
The final scene in this true adventure shocked the author, too.

‘The reader will be enthralled as Paul, former Fleet Street journalist turned professional yachtmaster, takes us along on his ‘swallowing the anchor’ voyage, his retirement from the sea.

'This self-confessed newish ancient mariner … has spent almost a lifetime sailing solo, as both an ocean going competitive yachtsman, as a DoT Commercial Yachtmaster, and during his circumnavigation to become a singlehanded Cape Horner ... Sailing to Purgatory has all the roller coaster elements of a heart stopping adventure — drama on the high seas, observing life ... undersea volcanoes, a love interest, and waves high enough to scare the pants off most of us.’ - Brenda Vowden, journalist, avid reader






Home from the outside ... St Helenans,
'Saints', round their South Atlantic
island in Midshipman,
en route for Stockholm.


















Enterprising forebears ... The house Paul's father designed, and the car his paternal grandfather designed and built.














Running repairs ... crewman Declan checks rig fittings on the superyacht, Midshipman, which Paul sailed from the Cape to Sweden.


















Sail power ... Gavin's Howe's beautiful yacht in the Mediterranean.



















Rescue in the Southern Ocean ... Yachting World's international edition this month features Paul and Captain Fantastic in its Great Seamanship series.


















Pat and Gerry Adamson, two wonderful supporters get Spirit of Pentax ready for her circumnavigation.















Home sweet home ... St Helena islanders, after a voyage round their island home on the superyacht, Midshipman.


















Baptism of a Cape Horner ... Lady Chichester names Spirit of Pentax in a ceremony at Brighton Marina.
















Homeward Bound 2 is prepared for her attempt on the longest open boat record.


















Tri trials ... testing Paul's entry in the singlehanded race across the Atlantic are great friends Ron Pell, Jerry Freeman plus a keen helper.


















Cover up ... Bob Abrahams works on cover ideas for Sailing to Purgatory.

















Stocking up for 18 months ... Last minute farewells before Spirit of Pentax and Paul left on the long route to become Cape Horners.
















Death of a racer ... Baltic Wind flounders after running into a container in the South Atlantic. Paul and a lady shipmate spent eight worrying days in a liferaft.

What could be more normal than humans not getting on with one another? Look at a playground filled with even the youngest pupils, and tell me they all act like friends.

Image of part of  a Sailing to Purgatory webpage to illustrate the article.
If at first you don't agree ... It's not just humans that struggle to accept an argument. Photo by David Clode on Unsplash
Look at a sports stadium’s adult audience, and discover if they all share a wonderful bond of agreement and friendship.

Humans seem to thrive on conflict. The bigger the difference between the ideals of one group and another, the more passionately they argue, the more the other side is detested.

In the stadium, the two sides of a team have the same number, are made up of people of a similar age, background and skills.

Despising and mocking

And yet, the crowd finds a reason for conflict, for despising and mocking.

If football fans can have passionate feelings, what’s the surprise when people in politics argue? Arguments within the second most influential political party are filling the news, because – shock, horror! - some in the party seemingly don’t like a religious group of – presumably – otherwise like-minded people.

Image of part of  a Sailing to Purgatory webpage to illustrate the article.
Hot off the de-Press ... The Beeb keeps us up-to-date with the squabbling ... unfortunately.

Those of a religious persuasion don’t like not being liked, although division and argument could hardly be more human, and hardly more normal for a political party.

The people in the Labour party who seemingly don’t like the people who express their dislike for people in the religious group – as if religion has much to do with politics - are expressing their dislike.

And the people disliked are moaning aloud, presumably, at the people who don’t like them, all very reminiscent of playground scenes.

Juvenile behaviour

What has this juvenile behaviour to do with politics? Surely there are enough bright people in the party to spot the divisions and to notice that it has nothing whatsoever to do with the party’s politics.

Usually, the hereafter is the concern and passion of religiously-minded folk, not so much the here and now.

Is it that the picked on crowd is huge and can take, as the expression goes, being put in their place.

Huge, large? Not at all, says the all-knowing internet in the guise of the Board of Deputies. ‘Jews represent 0.5 per cent of the UK population.’

They lie fifth in the UK after Christians, Muslims, Hindus and Sikhs, it reveals.

In the playground, if an argument doesn’t die after rather a lot of venting, there’s a reason for it.

Could it be, Doubting Thomas that I must be, that the argument is being stoked up by the party’s enemies, determined to make a considerable mountain out of a minority molehill?

I must be wrong, surely, for who could possibly expect to gain advantage from this noisy adversity?

Thanks very much for visiting the Tuesday and Thursday blogs for my adventure book, Sailing to Purgatory, which are introduced each time on Facebook Facebook dot com/Sailingtopurgatory

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