Back in the fifties, my dad bought an LP. He played it a lot – Uffa Sings.
As a young boy, I remember being fascinated by Uffa’s introduction to one of the sea shanties:
“‘A Roving’ – that’s a rollicking song but you can only sing about the first three verses of that because this is a song the sailors sung at sea and they weren’t always virtuous in their words.”
How I longed to hear the fourth verse!
I was reminded of this while watching Seb’s clips on You Tube.
Earlier in the year, Seb and I met at Newbury train station. He bought Blue Mistress’ old spray hood which is now attached to Maya somewhere in the Mediterranean.
I mentioned Seb at the start of his voyage. He is on a great adventure that he should one day look back on with pride. The lessons learnt will be there for ever.
He is sharing those lessons with us via short video clips from his phone. Perhaps, one of those lessons should be that because he is ‘less than virtuous in his words’, what works at sea doesn’t necessarily work for those us on land, sitting on our comfortable chairs gazing at glasses screens. (To be fair he has toned it down as time has gone on).
Here is the dilemma in the use of language. Is he recording events for himself and a small group of friends, in which case he has the right to say what he likes – (always remembering it’s difficult to put anything on media without someone misunderstanding you – it’s totally unrealistic to think that no one else will see it – and better your friends see it first), or for a wider group – us.
I am sure we can all handle the language individually, but I would have avoided watching the clips with my mother if she were still with us – and I am certain my children would prefer to watch with me out of the room.
All the above because I, for one, am fascinated by these clips, firstly because Seb is sailing a boat like mine, secondly because he is doing something I’ve always wanted to do, and thirdly because he has found a way of recording the voyage with an intense immediacy. If he takes care in putting it all together it will be a valuable resource to him in future.
Here is Maya rounding Cabo Vincente:
You can find the rest of his clips by searching Sebinasia on You Tube.
Be(a)ware and enjoy
When all is said and done, I’m home here talking about it, Seb’s out there doing it.
Wherever they go, I wish him and Maya fair winds – (whenever they blow).