Friday, 30 September 2016

Lady Jade

An old favourite.  Jim Grey, over there in Indiana, posted recently about subjects he photographs again and again.  I had the good fortune to meet Jim for an afternoon recently, since he and his lovely wife Margaret were holidaying (honeymooning) in Ireland.  He came up to The Liberties for the day, to see the Giant's Causeway, Carrick-a-Rede Rope Bridge and me, of course :)

More of that another day (when I get the film finished that is sitting inside the Nikon).  Where was I?  Oh yes, old favourites.

Here's one:

Lady Jade CE531, moored up in Portstewart Harbour last week.  She'll not be there much longer, methinks - she's hauled up onto dry land for the worst of the winter.  And check out the horizon - Dominican College looks like it's about to take off there in the background.  Rookie mistake - again!
And this is what she's tied up to:

Portstewart Harbour - the in/out part.  Dodgy horizon here too, though no quite as bad.

In the summertime the local teenagers hurl themselves off the rocks and the concrete pier there into the water.  The water's very clean and clear, in spite of the proximity to the harbour.  But then there ain't that many boats going in and out and the swell is usually pretty big, so any fuel spillage is quickly dissipated.  There's a few barriers up these days for 'Elf&Safety but as you can see there's still plenty of opportunity for accidents.  I was a little nervous, I have to admit, being so close to the water, since I'm none to steady on the feet at times and there was a fair wind blowing that day, as I recall.  But I survived to blog another day, though whether or not that's a good thing may be a moot point.

When I was young, we were never encouraged to go out on the water, in boats or not.  Looking back, my parents were confirmed land-lubbers, in spite of the fact there is water all around us.  I remember The Brother getting into water-skiing at a time and a wet-suit was acquired.  Now this would have been around 1971 or so and wet-suit technology ain't what it is today, dear readers.  No, this particular wet-suit was a DIY one, so mum had to stitch it together and then apply some sort of tape over the stitching.  I assume she was hoping that this was another fad that wouldn't last...and truth be told, it didn't, although that might have had something to do with the quality of the wet-suit than anything else.  I have a vague recollection of 'having a go' at water-skiiing...we didn't have a boat (obviously) but we knew people who did.  So I strapped the ski-things on and held onto the rope thing and someone shouted 'Hit It!' and I tried to stand up on the skis.  Twice, I think - maybe three times.  Unsuccessfully.  I stuck to cameras and dry land after that.

Thinking about the snap above reminded me of one of the few times I was out in the open sea in a boat when I was young.  I'd volunteered to go out in order to photograph a local dingy sailing competition.  Seemed like a good idea - as things do when you are in your early teens.  On the boat, all was good for a time - it was great, actually.  But then we anchored up as the dingys sailed around us.  And the sea was particularly heavy, I can remember.  And then I started feeling a little queasy...and then a lot.  Now I have pretty good sea legs but back then, anchored up in the middle of Portstewart Bay in a heavy swell it was a different matter.  Needless to say I have absolutely no snaps whatsoever to show of that particular event...


  1. Here in Indiana, USA, we have a scant bit of shoreline, way up north, at Lake Michigan. Otherwise, we're as land-locked as it gets!

    Thanks again for meeting with us and showing us around Portrush! It was a pleasure.

    1. Hi Jim, glad you guys got back to Indiana safe and well - it was great to hook up with you and Margaret for a few hours, really great.

  2. Great stories again, Michael :)
    And nice snaps from the harbour, of course. Nice boats and piers and stuff you just can't get enough of. At least that's what I'm thinking :)

    1. Thanks Roy - I agree, I like the boats and piers and water and HP5+ seems to like them as well. I need to get out and about a bit more - I keep telling myself that, but then real life takes over and suddenly the energy levels are low. Been doing a lot of work in the garden this past while (weather has been mild and dry) and not much photography. But when the temperatures drop hopefully I'll get out more and also give the darkroom some attention.