How was the trip to Scandinavia?
The scenery was absolutely stunning and the owner and guests absolutely loved it. We organised fishing tours, we had Vikings come round to the boat, we went to the old ancient Viking parliament and had a barbeque and we went up onto the biggest glacier in Europe. We could have even taken a helicopter up to the top and gone skiing if we had wanted.
Norway, in particular, was incredible. We arrived at the beginning of August and we were quite lucky with the weather considering we were on the down slope of the season. Ideally you want to be up there in the middle of June because then you have almost 24-hour sunlight. The facilities are superb, it is not the Med but that was refreshing. In several places we parked Christopher, I would ask who to see about the invoice and they would just say; “Oh, don’t worry about it, it’s just nice to have you here.”
It is an incredible place but we did find that three weeks there is probably your lot because everywhere is quite similar and because it is such a rich country everything is fairly pricey.
And then you took Christopher to London?
Yes, we finished off the summer by going to Canary Wharf. There was a lot of red tape and it was quite expensive because you need to hire people to help you with that. We needed pilots, permission to go under the city airport glide path, permission to go under the emirates cable car – they had to take the gondolas off the cable car to get us underneath – and we had to take all the kit off the top of the rig because otherwise we weren’t going to get under the QE2 bridge. We were tucked into Canary Wharf for a couple of days, right beneath the city buildings so there were huge high rises above us.
The owners like cities and London is such a cool city. They use their boat like a hotel and they wanted to put it somewhere interesting and Canary Wharf seemed to fit the bill and so that is what we did. Because they are very into their food we had dinner reservations for them at all the good restaurants and we went to see the Greenwich maritime museum.
So yes, it has been an amazing summer. It wasn’t cheap, London certainly wasn’t cheap, but you have got memories that will last forever.
What is next on the agenda for Christopher?
We will probably be in the yard this time next year for our five-year survey but after that we are hoping to plan a tour of the South Pacific and then back past Japan and Alaska. We want to be back for the St Barths Bucket in 2017.
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