Pete Clark the organiser of the whole project spent the day pacing outside like an expectant dad outside the maternity ward.
We could see that we were going to make it and were having a blast.
By mid afternoon the pace of the week had got to Time Team crew.
They were just so supportive though, when things were at their toughest they dropped cameras and got stuck in to help us, and since Friday was my birthday they bought cake, with candles, ginger beer and ice, a great sugar hit to keep us going.
Real woodworkers sharpen their pencils and cut their cake with axes.
Bother getting dark again already Three planks in place
Rachel was in charge of stitch holes I think about 180 of them to cut all together
This was somewhere around 1am, of the previous 39 hours we had spent 35 of them working on the boat and we were not finished yet, Richard had tried to get us to knock off at 10pm but no way were we going to pack in and risk not having the boat ready for launch.
Now we were all on to stitching the last plank in place. This involves one person tightening the stitch whilst another squirts mastic in to waterproof the hole (first rule of boatbuilding don’t make holes in the boat)
In places it can take some contortion and teamwork to get stitch mastic and locking wedges all in place.
Here we have 2 stitch teams going together, Jenni the Time Team producer had come back to help out and is holding Richard’s stitch tight and also holding the mastic covered lath of our stitch clear until we were ready to position it, try holding that position for 3 minutes at 2am.
recipe for a bad back?
I have never worked on a project where a team worked so hard together for so long and problem solved with such good humour. We should have been exhausted but somehow we were feeding off each others energy and enthusiasm.
Nearing the end exhaustion showing but we know we can finish tomorrow, in fact we were so happy we went home and drank good whisky to 5am, not a bad way to spend your birthday. I will remember these 48 hours with the utmost fondness but will only ever really be able to share the memory with the wonderful folk that went through it with me. I wonder if any of the magic will show on TV, hard to capture I suspect.