Rocking and Rolling, Naval Style
As many of you know, I have quite a yen to write a Regency with a Naval hero or three. Must be all those Hornblower books that I keep reading -- saying nothing about the TV series, natch -- and maybe those fabulous uniforms.
Provided she's just whizzing along, that is. We had a couple of sectors on the trip when she wasn't whizzing peacefully along at all. She was rolling (from side to side). A lot. Now that's actually OK, I found. If you're in bed, you just go with the flow and try not to fall out. If you're walking about, you always have one had free to hold on (with the drink in the other one).
Mind you, in the dining room, rolling was a bit problematic. There was one night when we were sitting at a table of 6. The 3 women were sitting on the banquette along the ship's side. The 3 men were sitting opposite on rather spindly gilt chairs. The ship was rolling so that the portholes along the dining soom were disappearing under water every now and then. And every now and then, said men were grabbing at the table in order not to go over backwards which would have been very undignified (and, for the wives, very funny). I can now say I have definitely seen fear in a man's eye.
Seriously, when the ship was rolling AND pitching as well (prow down into the water and then back up again), it was not at all comfortable and I shall have much more sympathy with my Naval heroes when I write then. Especially as their sailors had to go up the masts, in all weathers, to set and trim the sails. Have a look at this set of sails and just imagine how it would have been. Scary, I'd say.
|Royal Clipper: Just Count How Many Sails She Has!|
And in spite of the rolling, the waiters could still serve soup -- slowly -- without spilling a drop. No doubt Nelson's sailors could serve him soup as well.
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