RTW Clipper Race Starts in Southend on Sea

I felt excited to find out that the 2015 – 2016 RTW Clipper Race was going to start off Southend pier. Sailing

When I awoke this morning and looked out of the window, I discovered the weather did not seem to be on our side. Although, if you’re already in water does it really matter if you get wet?

Sailing

Not for them – but for us we received a traditional, british, bank holiday monday soaking, as we walked down the slippery planks on the longest pier in the northern hemisphere.  Sailing

The crowds were there but not at the level it would have been, on a sunny bank holiday. Which I felt quite sad about. The mist hang really heavily and I had wondered if we would see anything but as we moved closer towards the end of the pier, the sailing vessels came into view.

There was a family whose friend was on the Londonderry vessel as crew and was going to be gone for the whole year. In the last couple of months he had been sourcing the food for the trip and tiptree jams were willing to contribute.

Sailing

“Does he have a family?” I asked a guy there to support him, as he peered through his binoculars, to catch sight of him.

“He has family, but no children.” He responded.

“That makes it a bit easier then.” I said. The thought of buggering off and leaving small children-however tempting would not be something I could do!

Sailing

We watched  the vessels eagerly over the railings. Not really knowing what was going on but enjoying the noise of the crowd and  seeing waving red arms as the sailed by close to the pier as safety allowed.

As my back became ever damper we heard the first horn which signaled ten minutes to go and waited for the moment the horn sounded once again and they were off!

It was different to what I thought it would be, not as noisy or chaotic or fast but it left me feeling excited and thinking to myself wouldn’t it be lovely to take part. So much to do. Maybe next time!

Thanks to @StringerV for taking the photos today. One of us had to hold the umbrella!

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