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.

It seems to be an odd part of our national character that if we need the public – that is you and me and the majority – to follow new guidelines, we have to appoint prefects or virtual NCOs to make sure we obey.

Image of part of  a Sailing to Purgatory  on the adventure book Sailing to Purgatory blog website.
Cover up, almost ... All over the world, the essential dress code is a mask. When Covid is beaten, will we forget to wear masks again, or might it stay as the #1 fashion accessory for 2021?
Photo by Ayelt van Veen on Unsplash.
We all know – we’d have to be blind and deaf and on a desert island not to – the extreme dangers of Covid.

We see in the press, hear on the radio, and those lucky enough to have TV see it on their screens.

A killer

Covid is a killer: Its favourite victims seem to be mostly older people.

However, it's relaxed enough to be happy to take quite a few of the younger generations as well. And very importantly, we all know that it is not a nice way to be snuffed out.

Surely, there can’t be a soul in Britain, probably in the world, who doesn’t know well what those five letters C O V I D spell out – certain death, almost certainly ...
Yet the government calls on the fuzz to grab people on the street and tell them of the danger of Covid, and to pass the message in no uncertain way, including with a very substantial fine.

And – it seems part of our national character – many, many people, a considerable percentage of the public, in fact, want the boys in blue to grab anyone on the street and give them a fresher on the dangers of the virus, and the demand to cough up financially.

Surely, there can’t be a soul in Britain, probably in the world, who doesn’t know well what those five letters C O V I D spell out – certain death, almost certainly.

Fit and healthy enough

And certainly a very uncomfortable illness even if they are fit and healthy enough otherwise to be a match for our version of the plague.

On the radio news – and doubtlessly on all forms of news dissemination – we hear that people are not taking heed of the dangers, are not wearing masks, and in effect must be suicidal and even murderous or potty or a combination of the three.

I was a journalist for at least half of my working life and I remain observant and I don’t see people ignoring the risks. In Aldi today, for instance, all shoppers wore masks.

On the cycle ride there, yes, not everyone on the street was masked. But then doctors say it’s not necessary out in the air.

From what I see, it’s not an ignorant public that’s guilty of the spread.

It’s more likely to be because the new cyclist and his cohorts were very slow off the mark to recognise the immense danger and to get vital immunisation going.

Very best of luck coping with the current plague, readers. I’ve no doubt that you – that we all – are taking every precaution we could be. We’d have to be suicidal or murderous, or both, not to.

Thanks very much for visiting the mostly Tuesday and Thursday blogs for my adventure writing. The blogs (as they call 'em) are introduced each time on Facebook Facebook dot com/Sailingtopurgatory,

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The blogs for Sailing to Purgatory are introduced on Facebook.

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