Tall Ships’ Races 2010 Antwerp-Aalborg

Day 0 (Monday, July 12)
I woke up very early in Oslo, and went to the train station where I got the train to the airport. After a short flight I was in Brussels Airport, from where I took the bus to Antwerp under a pouring rain.

When I got in Antwerp the rain was stopping, and I carried my bag from the bus station to the harbour in a nice weather, taking pictures on the way.

In the harbour I went to my ship Christian Radich. After a short tour of the ship I unpacked my bags and went for a short walk in the harbour and to Grote Markt.

  • 2010-07-12 - Tall Ships' Races 2010, Day 0 - Antwerp

On the way I got French fries. I got back to the ship where I met Håkon which I knew from the previous year while sailing with Mathilde, and his girlfriend Danielle.

Together we went to visit the sailing ships in the harbour, then went for a dinner in Grote Markt.

We returned to the ship to see the fireworks, and went to sleep in hammocks.

Day 1 (Tuesday, July 13)
We woke up on the ship and got breakfast while more trainess were arriving on the ship.

At 10:00 there was a general assembly on deck. The Captain welcomed us to the race and the First Mate presented the coveted prize of the race, which Christian Radich held for the past 2 years. It’s a piece of rock from Cape Horn.

  • 2010-07-13 - Tall Ships' Races 2010, Day 1 - The Prize

After this the ships started leaving the harbour. There was an incident in which 2 ships got their yards tangled, and a few ropes broke and some sailors were injured. But it wasn’t a big issue and the program continued.

During our journey to the river of Antwerp we got a tour of the ship from the Chief Mate Bengt.

All the ships went to the river for a parade through the center of Antwerp.

  • Day 1 - Antwerp sailing ships parade 01

After the parade we headed to the open sea, where we practiced putting on the life vests and climbing the yards.

Day 2 (Wednesday, July 14)
We woke up early and had breakfast, then we were waiting for the race to start. The wind was not favorable, and the race was delayed for a few hours. All the ships were waiting around the starting line.

  • 2010-07-14 - Tall Ships' Races 2010, Day 2 - Race starts

Around 19:00 the Captain gave the order to raise all sails and the race was on!

We went to sleep under the smooth movement of the ship going from side to side.

Around 22:45 the alarm sounds! "All hands on deck!" We were in the middle of a squall (big storm) with rain, thunders and lightning. The Captain needed everybody on deck to lower some sails. After some time the waters were more calm and we went back to sleep. Later we found out that this storm hit Europe quite badly.

Day 3 (Thursday, July 15)
I woke up early for my 4-8 watch and enjoyed the sunrise.

  • 2010-07-15 - Tall Ships' Races 2010, Day 3 - Sunrise

There were big waves all day and the ship was moving from side to side. The sergeant was holding the plates so they don’t fall off. We were playing some group games on deck. I almost cut my leg off in the heavy door which was closing before I can pass through it.

  • Day 3 - Big waves 10

During dinner a sail ripped in 2 places. 12 sailors went on the yard to take it down and replace it with a new one, while the ship was moving from side to side.

  • Day 3 - Ripped sail 05

Day 4 (Friday, July 16)
The ship was stuck in a strange position, on the port side all the time. It was funny to see everybody walk diagonally.

After dinner we were approaching the finish line, and the Captain announced it.

  • 2010-07-16 - Tall Ships' Races 2010, Day 4 - Race finish

Just as he was saying it the wind changed direction, and all the ships that were behind us needed many hours to cross the finish line.

Day 5 (Saturday, July 17)
In the morning we were scrubbing the deck to clean the ship. We were using the motor to go through Skagerrak Strait to Halmstad (Sweden).

Many people had birthdays on the ship and the cooks made cakes for them and we sang "Happy Birthday" to them.

  • 2010-07-17 - Tall Ships' Races 2010, Day 5 - Steering

I got to steer the ship as part of my watch duties.

Day 6 (Sunday, July 18)
In the morning we watched the movie "Around Cape Horn under sail", then I went to do my horizon watching duties. We were polishing the metal parts of the ship to make it look nice for entering Halmstad.

Then we took a group picture of the 4-8 watch and rehearsed our song for the BBQ.

In the afternoon we arrived in Halmstad (Sweden) where we were welcomed with open arms by city representatives. The other 2 big Norwegian sailing ships in the race were also there, Statsraad Lehmkuhl and Sørlandet.

We went for a walk downtown Halmstad and the first stop was a pub where we had some beers. Other sailors joined us, and also from the other 2 Norwegian ships.

  • Day 6 - Halmstad 04

We got back to the ship then all the 3 crews moved to Statsraad Lehmkuhl for a BBQ. There was good food and entertainment provided by the watches. There was also a drinking competition with orange juice.

  • 2010-07-18 - Tall Ships' Races 2010, Day 6 - Statsraad Lehmkuhl BBQ

I left the party quite early as I was tired. Many of the others partied until late and even went to the town for more partying.

Day 7 (Monday, July 19)
Woke up in Halmstad and went for an amusement park provided by the town free of charge to the sailors. Then we took a free bus to Tylösand beach and walked back to the ship on Prins Bertils pathway by the coast.

  • 2010-07-19 - Tall Ships' Races 2010, Day 7 - Tylösand Beach

On the way the guys went for a swim. We stopped at a kiosk in Grötvik where we were discussing in Scandinavian with a Swedish bartender for a long time.

Near the ship we met Pia and Hans and got one last beer before going on the ship.

At 18:00 we left harbour while trying to hit Statsraad Lehmkuhl with water balloons, but we were out of range.

Day 8 (Tuesday, July 20)
In the morning we got lessons in types of ships and reading the sextant.

After a few hours on the sea we arrived in Aalborg, and fired the cannon just as we entered the harbour.

The captain addressed everybody in an emotional speech and handed out diplomas to the trainees.

  • 2010-07-20 - Tall Ships' Races 2010, Day 8 - Diploma ceremony

We went for a walk downtown, then in the evening we went to the amusement park and a pub crawl.

  • Day 8 - Aalborg 07

We got back to the ship around midnight.

Day 9 (Wednesday, July 21)
In the morning we went to see the movie Windjammer (1958) which is about our ship Christian Radich. It was very emotional to see this movie, which was presented by David Strohmaier and his wife, who found it and restored it. It was nice to see it together with other people from Christian Radich.

In the afternoon we went to have lunch and to the Maritime Museum where we spent a few hours.

  • 2010-07-21 - Tall Ships' Races 2010, Day 9 - Aalborg Maritime Museum

We got back to the ship and went out for dinner, at a restaurant where the waitress was Norwegian. We got back to the ship around 23:00 and went to sleep for the last night on board.

Day 10 (Thursday, July 22)
I woke up and had a breakfast, then I called a taxi and left to the train station. I took a train to Hørring, then changed to another train to Hirtshals.

In Hirtshals I had a few hours before the ferry left, so I went for a walk on the beach.

  • 2010-07-22 - Tall Ships' Races 2010, Day 10 - Hirtshals

I took the ferry to Larvik, which was actually a 4-hours feast of an all-you-can-eat buffet with lots of different food. In Larvik I took a bus to Oslo, where I arrived around 19:30.

Photo album
Christian Radich
Article about the 3 Norwegian ships

flattr this!


Brussels-Bruges Trip

Day 1 (Friday, May 21)
I went to the bus station in Oslo to meet with Petru and Marcin and together we took the bus to the Rygge airport. After a short flight we were in Charleroi airport in Belgium and the adventure to get to our hostel began.

First we waited more than 30 minutes in the queue to buy tickets for the shuttle bus. Then we were trying to buy tickets for the local buses in Brussels but our cards were not accepted. After buying the tickets from an underground kiosk, we took the wrong tram and ended in another part of the city, so we had to go back and take the correct tram. Eventually we reached the hostel after 3 hours from landing, and we waited some time in the lobby while drinking Limoncino.

Already drunk, we went to the city and had a huge portion of French fries in the center. We couldn’t have the fries at the last authentic Friterie where the single girls are not waiting for the bus (as we read in a guide book), because it was closed.

Day 1 - Brussels 03

After the French fries we saw a repetition of the Zinneke Parade, and had a big dinner with a few fruity beers.

After the dinner we went back to the hostel for a refill of Limoncino, then we went to the You Night Club where it was a Back to the 80s party. The nice girl at the entrance didn’t want to let us in in the beginning, but Petru convinced her with his charm. The party and the music were great, and it didn’t finish at 3 in the morning as we were used to. There were lots of hats, wigs and pink scarfs around for people to wear.

2010-05-21 - Brussels-Bruges Trip, Day 1 - Back to the 80s party

Around 04:30 we went back to the hostel, not finding a kebab shop on the way.

Day 2 (Saturday, May 22)
I woke up quite early and went to eat something. I found a great place called Aux Cent D’wiches, with great and cheap sandwiches. I got Petru and Marcin there and they liked it as well, eating there every morning. I also sent a message to Carolina to buy some Limoncino on the way.

We wanted to go to Atomium, but instead were just walking and found the Koelkeberg Cathedral by mistake. We were having some beers we got in a local shop while taking jumping pictures in front of the cathedral. We also went inside.

Day 2 - Brussels 04

After the cathedral we went back to the hostel where Carolina was waiting for us, with a detour to the same local shop to buy more beers and to the supermarket to get even more beers.

Together with Carolina we went to the city to watch the Zinneke Parade which only happens every 2 years on the weekend we were in Brussels.

Day 2 - Brussels 08

After the parade we got some more French fries and took the metro to Atomium. We also went inside and were almost the last ones in.

2010-05-22 - Brussels-Bruges Trip, Day 2 - Atomium

After Atomium we got some icecream and stayed on the grass in the park outside Atomium. Then we went walking in the park to see the Chinese Pavilion and the Japanese Tower.

Day 2 - Brussels 24

After this we returned to the hostel where Petru and Marcin got lots of beers to see the Champions League final, while the rest were sleeping. After the game we refilled with Limoncino and went out to the same club, You Night Club. It was a posh night and everybody was dressed nicely. At first the bouncer didn’t want to let me in because I forgot to wash my sports shoes, but the owner of the club, the same woman who let us in the previous night, came and let us in.

After some dancing and using my newly acquired green sunglasses, me and Carolina left with a side trip to a Greek fast-food place. Petru and Marcin came later making lots of noise. Then the symphony of snoring began.

Day 3 (Sunday, May 23)
I woke up early again and went to the same sandwich shop, and eventually all the others went to the same shop. We got Leia from USA with us and together we took the train to Bruges. While waiting for the train Carolina found a porquinho to talk to.

In Bruges we walked around the town and entered almost all cathedrals, then went up the Belfort and its 366 steps to see the view.

2010-05-23 - Brussels-Bruges Trip, Day 3 - Bruges Sightseeing

After this we went to a nice restaurant Cambrinus to have some good food and lots of beers.

Wanting to go for the boat tour around the canals, we asked some tourists for the way and they directed us in the wrong direction. Eventually we found the boat tour harbour, and we got lucky that we could get in since it was past the closing time and we got on the last boat. The boat tour was nice and well worth it.

Day 3 - Bruges 06

After this we took the train back to Brussels, standing on the floor since it was very crowded.

Back in Brussels we went to the European Parliament and then to see Manneken Pis.

Day 3 - Brussels 03

We then went for some Greek gyros and then back to the hostel.

Day 4 (Monday, May 24)
Me, Petru and Marcin woke up early to get the flight back to Oslo, while Carolina had one more day in Brussels. At the airport we got some beers and slept all the way to Oslo.

Photo album

flattr this!


%d bloggers like this: