Beaulieu Rally report – May 2021

From the Tempest to a Comedy of Errors

A Shakespearean tour de force by any other name which was the Beaulieu Rally

It started happily enough when we arrived on our boat, the good ship Oceansong, on Thursday, ready to set off for Beaulieu Marina. Unfortunately the engine wouldn’t start….someone who shall be nameless had omitted to turn off the isolator which meant the battery was dead.  Enter SeaStart stage left, not a bear in sight, which came to fix the problem. Unfortunately it needed a whole new battery so Brian was sent for. He replaced the battery and we were off!

Well, that was the hope. The weather report was a bit iffy, to say the least, and the first phone call on Friday morning was a cancellation. Sunday was forecast strong winds and heavy rain for most of the weekend.

The Tempest was on its way!

However, we set off for Beaulieu and on the way I called most of the ralliers to get a consensus of opinion. One or two cancelled as they were coming from the east; one or two decided to arrive on Friday to Beaulieu and leave on Saturday to avoid the bad weather due to come in on Sunday. The rest decided to stick with the original programme and arrive on Saturday.

Enter the Comedy of Errors…

Later that afternoon I had news that one or two of the original ralliers who had cancelled because of bad weather had decided to come by road and join us for the bbq.  The sun came out, the sailing was good and calm, the tide was with us and the wind on the beam, and when we arrived the other two boats soon appeared.  We had a lovely evening, sitting on deck with our pre-prandials in the Beaulieu sunshine. We then joined forces for dinner. The pre-prandials turned into quite a lot of ‘during and post’ prandials, all covid safe and secure of course.

Saturday dawned bright and sunny with just a hint of a breeze. 5 other boats arrived to join us, making six in all, and along with the first two boats it wasn’t a bad turn out for a Bavaria rally of 8 boats considering the weather forecast. 12 boats had originally booked onto the rally.  The pontoon at the visitors mooring at Beaulieu is wide so it was decided to hold the pontoon party there ‘with social distancing’ and very jolly it was too. Nibbles and dips were handed out as appetizers. It was also lovely to see some children with parents and grandparents.  And how wonderful to be part of a group of people after so long in lockdown.

We then all decamped to the bbq site. The bbq’s were already lit. Sausages, steaks, beefburgers were cooking and sizzling.. Not an eye of newt or tail of frog to be seen. The sun shines on the righteous doesn’t it?  It was a beautiful evening, although a bit chilly. A lot of laughs and fun, and the children played rounders and practiced cartwheels.

Sunday was true to the forecast and most of the boats made a hasty departure before the weather really set in.  We decided to stay another night as we didn’t have work the next day, being happy retirees…..  A beautiful sail back to our home port of Hamble, then home to Stratford upon Avon…and Shakespeare.

A great time was had by all….and ‘alls well that ends well’

On to the next rally at Bembridge, Rock the Boat. I can’t wait!