Weymouth 2007 - Trip 1
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Having agreed to collect Gordy, as well as Dindin, I hired a Vectra estate car. Sometime I'm going to have to teach Gordy manners - it would have been nice of him to say thank-you. Anyway, I sat in the car, and noticed that there was no SatNav. I then turned on the engine, and tried to adjust the wing mirrors. No matter what I did, the passenger mirror didn't adjust so that I could see out of it. It's one of these cars that folds its mirrors in when the car is locked, and then folds them out again when it is unlocked. This is a good idea, but the passenger side mirror wasn't folding out again properly. Locking, and unlocking, the car didn't help, so I went back into the office, and asked somebody to look at it. One of the blokes came out, and moved the mirror into its correct place. I didn't want to do this myself, in case I broke it.
It didn't take me long to drive home, and load up the car (no twin-set for me this weekend), but I did delay my journey slightly, because I didn't want any dirty washing to be left over the weekend. The disadvantage of living on my own is that nobody does the washing up while I'm away. Second thoughts, the same happened when Bird lived with me. The traffic on the M4 was slow in places, but it didn't take too long to get to Bath. Having done as he was told for once, Gordy was at Dindin's gaff, with his dive kit. When he looked at the car, he commented that we'd be squeezed in like we were when we went to Penzance. He had so little faith in Dindin's packing ability. Being a lazy ginger scrote, he went to sit in the passenger seat while Dindin and I loaded up the car. Sam was looking gorgeous, wearing a very nice low-cut top. She said that she was going to run the half marathon, but that she'd given her place to somebody else, so she could spend the weekend with Dindin. He then decided to come diving with us!
As we were leaving, I went to play a CD, and there wasn't one in the player. I then checked my secret stash of CDs, and they weren't there. At least Gordy had been doing something while Dindin and I were packing the car. We had a giggle the whole journey down. I can't remember much of what we laughed at, but it did involve Dindin and me giving Gordy a lot of jip. There were only two Dickson Manouvers during the journey down - one when I cut up a van, so that we could get into the services (thanks to Dindin for buying me a Mars bar), and another when I took my eyes off the road because Gordy was playing with the controls, and almost hit the kerb. Gordy reckons there were others, but I don't believe him.
Worried that we might not get there in time to eat, I eventually explained to Dindin that he should get Rodders to find a local pub (preferably the one by Chesil Cove), and check out the food situation. It took a while for Dimdin to understand, but, when he did, he called Rodders, and made it sound as if it was all his idea! We got to Portland OK, and I then had to rely on Gordy to navigate. It got a bit confusing, but, after he'd directed a few turns, Dimdin just said, "it's at the top of the hill". Gimmeration, why didn't he tell us that in the first place? We found the hotel OK, and parked opposite. The others were walking from the hotel towards us. I was not impressed - we'd given Rodders a simple food-related job to do, and he'd failed. Still, it was nice to see Zoe and her two mates again.
Apart from take-away shops, the only place that we could see that was still doing food was a Chinese restaurant. Before going in there, we checked out a pub a bit further up the road. As we got close, Gordy, who was walking in front, suddenly stopped, and said that he was too scared to go in, and ask whether they were still doing food, so I had to ask. They didn't do food, and there didn't seem to be too much totty, so we went back to the Chinese. At £2.50 per bottle, we tried not to drink too much in the restaurant, and actually did quite well. The food was good, but the service wasn't brilliant. During the meal, there was lots of talk of carrying a nuclear reactor around with us while we're diving. This would produce helium, and keep us warm. Dindin also suggested that it could generate electricity, as is done in nuclear powered satellites, but Gordy told him that there aren't any nuclear powered satellites.
We went back to the pub for a few pints, because Gordy decided that he fancied the barmaid (she must have been in her 60s). Never mind, if he goes off with the barmaid, I'll have Emma. Back at the hotel, we found that Rodders had done well. It was clean, and comfortable. Gordy, Dimdin, and I were sharing a room. As we opened the door, Dimdin and Gordy rushed to get the double-bed, and wrestled for a few minutes before Dimdin gave up. Having managed to tread in dog-turd on the way back from the pub, Gordy had made a complete mess of the bed cover! He cleaned it up, and Dindin sat on the double bed, cleaning his teeth. Something made him laugh, and he sprayed toothpaste all over Gordy's double-bed. Gordy then went into the bathroom, and Dimdin threw a tea-bag at him. He missed, and it stuck to the wall. What will the cleaners think on Sunday?
As usual, Dindin was in charge of setting an alarm, and we woke up in good time. We got dressed, and went to leave. Gordy was gimmering around (as he always does in the morning), so we left him to it (with the key that the boys had broken during their wrestle last night). The hotel was a bit of a maze, but we found the breakfast room eventually. The woman serving was scary, with quite a few tatoes. While I was getting my cereal, she asked a bloke whether he'd gone out last night. He said that he didn't, because he's got better things to spend his money on than beer. I thought that that was strange, but said, "Oh yes. Like curry and women". "Oh no", he replied, "Women and children". Fortunately, I thought before opening my mouth again, and I didn't say, "There are laws against that!".
The other joined us a bit later (Zoe was looking as sexy as always), and the women then asked whether anybody had lost a key. Having not fixed the key ring yet, Gordy had managed to lose our door key. He really shouldn't be trusted with anything. The breakfast was good, and we all left to make our way to Portland. We had no idea where the boat was moored. We checked out were Tango is moored, and the other side of the river, but couldn't find the boat, but we did discover that the dive shop wasn't open. We eventually found it moored on the town side of the bridge. Smudge (the skipper) already had the kettle on, and I do remember him saying something like, "There's always time for tea". Top man! He'd also called the dive shop, and found that it was open (they owners had slept in). After loading most of our kit on the boat, I drove Dindin and Gordy to the dive shop to get their cylinders filled. As their was no totty, I left them there, and went to park the car. The car park was right next to where the boat was moored, but Smudge had already cast off when I got to the river, so I had to meet the boat on the other side of the bridge. Gordy and Dindin joined us with their full cylinders, and we had another cuppa before setting off.
The weather wasn't brilliant, so we decided on diving in Portland Harbour. Our first dive was going to be the Landing Craft, and the Bombarden Unit. Smudge gave us an excellent brief, and in we went. The water was cold (9°C), and, not long into the dive, I started feeling wet. Oh dear, Gary at Slough Scuba obviously hadn't found all the leaks. Still, not to worry - I had a totty dive. The only problem was, Gordy and Dindin had gone in first, and kicked up all the silt. I didn't fancy swimming from one wreck to the other with almost zero visibility, but, fortunately, we found the rope linking the two together. I do enjoy diving with totty - not only are they totty, but they also see little sea creature things that I didn't know existed. Zoe found a nudibranch, but didn't understand my signal for it! After about 45 minutes, I was cold enough, so found the shot on the Bombardem Unit, and up we went. Back on the boat, Smudge had made tea, and put pasties in the oven. Job done! It was almost a shame to have left Weymouth! I didn't realise how cold I was until I started shaking, but I soon warmed up with the pasties.
Just in case my suit leaked, I wore long shorts, and a long-sleeved grey T-shirt (if that's not a contradiction in terms). When I got out of my suit, my clothes clearly showed where the water had got in, and it seemed to be through the cuff dump, and through the inflater. After a short break, we got back in the water. Unfortunately, I can't remember what the second dive was, but it was a bit shorter than the first dive, because I got cold fairly quickly. I felt sorry for Zoe that I'd cut the dive short, it would have been better for her if I didn't dive.
It didn't take us long to get back. When we moored up, I discussed kit with Smudge, and he said that we could lock it all up on the boat (except the cylinders that need to be filled, of course). I went to get the car, and Gordy actually helped load things into the car. He can behave sometimes. There was totty in the dive shop this time, so I was happy to stay and eat ice-cream while Zoe's cylinder was filled (she was going to Bath tonight, so needed to take hers with her). The boys wanted to stop at the two dive shops in Portland on the way back, so I dropped them there, and took Zoe's cylinder back to the hotel, in case she wanted to leave early. It turned out that she was going to join us for a drink, so we had totty company for longer.
I went back down to collect the boys. They'd looked around one of the dive shops, but the other was closed. The totty was inside working, but the door was locked. Both were too scared to knock on the door, so they were standing outside nudging each other as I turned up! I was up for driving into Weymouth for a curry, as long as we had a few pints near the hotel afterwards. Dindin pointed out that a few pints in Weymouth would be better, so we decided that Olly and Zoe could drive us into Weymouth, Olly could leave his car overnight, and we could get a taxi back. Fortunately, Olly and Zoe agreed with our plan.
We parked the cars in the car park, and went to the pub next to the car park. It was a top pub, and there was a very sexy barmaid. While we were in the pub, Olly showed us a mobile video that's doing the rounds at Bath University. It's a sex video of a bird with fairly big boobs. Apparently she's quite embarrassed that it's being past around all her fellow students, but is still dating the bloke who took it. Gordy also mentioned a Channel 4 programme about global warming being entirely caused by radiation from the sun, and not by CO2 emissions (see The Great Global Warming Swindle, The truth about global warming - it's the Sun that's to blame, and Sun 'not to blame' for global warming). After a couple of pints, we left Zoe to drive back to Bath (somebody had to support Emma in the Bath Half Marathon, since Gordy had come diving).
We went to the Weymouth Tandoori, and, as usual, were not disappointed. Gordy and Dindin continued their plans for a portable nuclear fusion reactor, which would keep us warm when diving, power our movement, and produce helium for our trimix. It seems that it's not such a silly idea:
Fusion Reactor Size
Vive Les Nukes
Somewhere along the line, Dindin commented that some satellites are nuclear powered. I had no idea, but Gordy was convinced that there aren't any. Check out Nuclear Power In Space, and NuclearSpace: Past Space Nuclear Power System Accidents. Looks like Dindin was correct.
We also got on to overcoming the gravitational pull of the moon (see Engineer Live!, and came to the conclusion that Gordy's fat arse could do that on its own! I'd given up trying to take part in this conversation by this point, but Gordy and Dindin then got onto how to calculate PI. Dindin said that it must be using finite element analysis, but Gordy disagreed (see Howstuffworks, and Pi).
After that, we headed back to the pub by the car park for another beer, before getting a taxi back to the hotel. We had untold hassle trying to get a taxi, but got one eventually. While we were having a drink waiting for the taxi, Band of Gold was playing in the background. Gordy wanted to know who sang it, but I couldn't remember. For those interested, it was Freda Payne.
[Thanks to Gordy for all the links - he obviously had too much time when he got back home!]
As usual, I had left Dindin in charge of setting the alarm. Unfortunately, he didn't know whether his mobile automatically changed from GMT to BST, so we ended up waking up an hour early. I have no idea why I didn't set an alarm myself. Oh well.
Just as we were leaving the room, Gordy had a strop because we were going without him. He's really going to have to learn - if he wants to go down to breakfast at the same time as us, then he needs to get up at the same time as us. It can't be that difficult to figure out! Anyway, breakfast did the job, along with plenty of tea. During breakfast, I persuaded Dindin to try fixing my suit while he was fixing his. We got our stuff out of the drying room (my drysuit was almost dry again), packed everything into the cars, and off we went.
With air and water temperatures both 9°C, it was going to be a cold dive, especially since I knew my suit was going to leak. The skipper saw us OK on the tea front, and we headed off to Portland Harbour. We dived the Countess - there was no totty on board, so I ended up diving with Dindin and Scrote. Apart from being cold, all I really remember is the boys trying to send a tyre up to the surface, and the visibility being pants. After about 25 minutes, Dindin suggested going up, and I wasn't going to argue.
Back on the boat, I knew that I wasn't going to do a second dive, but others were thinking about it. After drinking tea, and eating pasties, in the wheelhouse, nobody fancied doing a second dive, so we headed back to the harbour. It was quite choppy on the way back, and the boat "door" fell out of its fixings. Fortunately, it fell into the boat, and not out of it! The boat wouldn't get underneath the bridge until later, so Smudge moored on the sea side of the bridge, and we unloaded there. After getting cash to pay him, and buying some chips for the journey, we left Weymouth.
It was a fairly quiet, uneventful, journey back. I pulled into the A303 services on the way back (without cutting up a van driver this time), to get something to drink. While the boys were getting the drinks, I got a multimedia text message from a number that wasn't stored in my phone book. It said, "took a detour to get some service six penny handy job.", and had a picture of a school sign. It worried me slightly, but I thought I'd think about it later.
After dropping Gordy and his stuff off in Bradford-on-Avon (Emma wasn't there, unfortunately, she was having a post-half-marathon-drink in Bath), Dindin and I drove to Bath, and dropped his stuff off. After unloading the car, I went off in search of a parking space. Gimmeration! I got totally lost, and ended up going along a road that had a wall on one side, and parked cars on the other, and the estate car only fitted in between them when I folded in the wing mirrors. After at least 15 minutes, I arrrived back at Dindin and Sam's house, and parked back on the double-yellow lines. We had a quick cuppa before I left to drive home to Slough.
As I was joining the M4 at J18, I saw a naughty National Express coach driver dropping somebody off on the slip-road. I decided to report him, but by the time I got around to doing anything about it, I'd forgotten what number bus it was, and what time it was.
Thanks everybody for an excellent weekend.
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Created on: 30 Mar 2007. Modified on: 20 May 2007.
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