Where Did We Go Wrong!
20 April 2019
A very long time ago, really, way way back in the mists of time, every Spring, my dad would head for the overgrown, weed and junk strewn yard that was Willie Boag's boatyard. The old wooden shed where Willie built some of the finest of the Clyde, Loch Long fleet dominated the yard, all black creosote and sawdust. Piles of planks lay around in the weeds in various sizes and shapes beside the cast iron boiler that was the heart of the plank bender.
It was an adventure playground for kids and we'd run around mad for hours. Meanwhile, dad and his pals would be on their hands and knees scraping, sanding and antifouling getting ready for the nip and tuck of one design racing come the start of the season.
Fast forward fifty years and the weed and junk strewn yard is transformed into a small industrial town. Massive sheds, like aircraft hangers line the "streets". Pristine, well, it was before we got here, concrete pads are all set up under canopies to protect you from the blazing sun, or lashing rain and with electricity, running water, seats and work benches.
It's all very fancy but, in the end, it's still a boat yard.
The biggest difference is that while we're cutting a dash in our antifoul splattered white Tyvek boiler suits, rubber gloves and equally splattered safety glasses through which you peer like your bug spattered windscreen during a summer nights drive home when you've run out of windscreen wash, the other boat owners are either conspicuous by their absence, or, standing around chatting, hands on hips while squads of $100 per hour tradies clamber over and under their boats.
Where did we go wrong?