Rule Britania…..Union Jack

The Red Ensign – ‘Rule Britannia’

Sailing together – Sue & Bob on ‘P.A.’ and me singlehanding – you may recall our dramatic entry into Georgetown (via the dangerous cut – though we didn’t know it at the time!!!) and our introduction to the mass anchoring procedures. You may also remember that I fly the British Union flag on the Jack -‘The Union Jack’, well not long after anchoring, I was having breakfast when a dink slowed by, there was an Englishman on board – a loud one at that!!….[quickly clearing his throat twice and with a stiff upper lip he accusingly states]…..”I say, your flying the wrong flag sir”…yes I know, I say… “well Sir, you can’t do it, you must fly a Red Ensign like everyone else”…quite frankly scarlet I don’t give a shit, I like that flag and that’s all that West Marine had in stock…..”Sir, I must warn you!! You have to be at war or have the Queen on board to be able to fly that flag”……well (I say) – sailing down this chain of isands, I’ve declared war on each and every island I drop anchor off – but no-one can be arsed to take my the challenge….. COUGHS SPLUTERS – “It’s a bloody effrontery and I shall report you Sir”…..[coughs twice and swiftly departs like a demented scalded cat] and that was the last I saw of him…… well for months anyway.

Spending months in an anchorage, you obviously get to know a lot of cruisers, islanders and landlubbers, for some time I had been one of the morning radio controllers on the ‘Cruisers Net’ on channel 68 (a bit like a DJ really but with verbals), I had become quite well known……one day I see a reconizable dink arriving with three occupants, I can see ONE stood up at attention? The little rubber boat bumps along side and I notice that it is the Englishman who is paranoid about the Union Jack….”Michael” he says (by now he has learned exactly who I am and has probably warmed to me) “the committe [of what I don’t know] wish to present you with a new Red Ensign as we now realize you are a wacky excentric Englishman but nevertheless you must conform old boy”…well thank you very much (I reply in amazement) – the Union flag is getting a bit tatty and it needs a wash, it will do for the time being….”righteeo Sir” he mutters, to that, ‘the committee boat’ saunters off to supervise the anchorage……

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