Legends from our own lunchtimes

Tuesday, July 19, 2022

Monday 18th July - Bruges


Here we are as we have been for almost two weeks trying to stay cool in a particularly nasty bout of heat, good friends moored astern of each other.  Since parts of Max were planned aboard Joyeux we can probably claim that our boats are part of each other’s families too, at least that’s the way it always seems.

Our Joyeux, terribly battle scarred from three decades of charter work before we adopted him, cared for now like an old working dog in retirement, fits comfortably like an old pair of shoes.  Their Max, barely in double figures, his first tiny rust spot appearing just today, the gorgeous show pony glittering like a finely cut jewel, always attracting covetous glances from passers-by.

So it wasn’t unexpected when a stranger walking by stopped as we were hanging around in the heat, introduced himself and proceeded to heap what could only be described as praise on “our” Max.  We were certainly not prepared however, for what followed:

“It’s beautiful” he said, pausing to take in Max’s fine details, where exquisite rope work met sparkling stainless steel, before slowly turning in our direction, “but this” he said, moving towards our Joyeux which in all honesty looks a bit like someone’s Bull Terrier has used it as a teething toy and then had a really good try at repairing the damage with a bit of toothpaste,  “This,” he repeated with a good deal of excitement in his voice, “is something very special”.  His eyes even seemed a little glazed as he took in every detail, every curve, apparently oblivious to its many faults.

We asked him if he’d like to inspect ‘below’ and he almost burst with surprise and enthusiasm, gasping at the glorious 80’s interior, the odd detailing and gushing at the fact that we’d dared to keep the pastel blue outside.  

When later he returned with a small token of appreciation for our hospitality, appropriately annotated “(Warm) Greetings, Rafael” he could never know just what pleasure he’d given us all.


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