‘Twas the night before Christmas

Big thanks to Ingrid, our intrepid sailor of the great seas for this painting!

Thanks to Bruce and Sheila for this entertaining tale of woe (or as Joost puts it, Of mice and Seamen) from Heritage Harbour:

T’was the night before Christmas
and all around the dock
not a creature was stirring
not even Schokkenbroek

When out on the dock there arose such a clatter
We sprang from our bunk to see what was the matter
Away to the deckhouse we flew like heck
Tore open the door and stepped out on deck

The rain beat down from the clouds oer’head
We wished then we had stayed in bed
When what to our bloodshot eyes did avail
But a lovely red dory drawn by a half-dozen whale
With a little old sailor so grumpy and mean
We recognised him then as Santa-Ratso O’Green

He looked round the harbour with a glint in his eye
Then dumped out his sea-bag which was somehow dry
All over the dock now his Christmas gifts scattered
“A hundred little mice,” the old salt nattered

“Get aboard North Star, Ella, and Querencia
On Moonbeam, on Winsome, and Fantasea”
“Stop now!” we cried, “these are not presents
we’ve already got otters, a beaver, and herons”

“On Sylvester, Mysterion, Milo, Legenda,
Poseidon, Ruggen, Molly, Ern and Anja”
“Vast heaving,” we cried, “this will not do”
But up on the boats his visitors flew

As halyards rattle when not made fast
His charges surged forward, some right up the masts
We called then, “You swine, Santa-Ratso O’Green
Your presence not wanted, you are very mean!”

We stood and we stared at each other afloat
Us in our nightclothes, he in his boat
His beady eyes tracked us up and down
And his face wrinkled into a deep frown

“These mice are the best
They make beautiful nests
They scurry, they scrabble and though they are small
they’re heritage mice – a treat for you all”

He called to his whales and tugged on their reins
Around us fell more Vancouver rain
But we heard him exclaim as he sailed out of sight

Merry Christmas to all, and hopes for a New Year that brings things back to normal eventually!

Merry Christmas, and good riddance 2020!

Our Christmas lights are up at the shed, along with our Grinch display – and although our regular Saturday workshops are on hold for a while, you’re welcome to come down to enjoy all the lights of the harbour!

If you’re a member of OSBUG, you are still able to take our boats out – we’ve had the good fortune to enjoy suitable weather the last couple of Saturdays, so Dale S. and I have gone out rowing or sailing – can’t beat mid-December boating!

The shed is also available if you’ve got small projects to do – Mattias has been working on a model. Please be mindful of cleanliness, both of the hand-sanitizing type as well as cleaning up any mess, and be sure to wear your mask.

As part of the Vancouver Maritime Museum programming, on Monday, Bill Rhone will be doing a live sketching presentation, doing a drawing of North Star of Herschel Island, while our wharfinger Bruce tells tales and information about North Star. Be sure to check it out!

Duane has posted another video, showing some of the wild weather at the harbour:

Take care, happy Holidays, and we hope to be able to resume our workshop activities in the new year!