Thursday, November 19, 2009

Boyhood Dreams

This is the Alan Buchanan designed sloop 'Barbican' - she is a very salty 32 feet of pure joy.

There is a saying that goes like this - "Be careful what you dream of young man, for you shall surely attain it" - I don't know the origin of this quote but it seems to contain both a certainty and a warning. The warning is that: - As it is certain that you will attain what you want (if you dream hard enough - and work hard enough to make that dream come true), make very sure that what you dream of is worthy, is of substance - good and true.

This yacht 'Barbican' is a yacht I dreamed about when I was growing up - I have always loved this design and in 2003 I purchased the plans from the designer Alan Buchanan with the intention of perhaps building her - and it is still a dream I would like to fulfil if the circumstances are ever favourable enough to do so.

Since 2003 I have collected a dossier of articles and photographs of Barbican and last week downloaded an article about her from the 'Alan Buchanan Classic Yachts' website - When I read the article I smiled for two reasons - First, the story told me that someone else like me, had dreamed when they were very young and had now seen that dream fulfilled, and secondly because I was reminded of similar circumstances regarding another yacht and someone elses dream.

At the end of the Barbican article I read this - "Barbican is now sold to a marine electrical engineer who, as a boy 20 years ago, wrote to the author offering to buy her from the proceeds of his paper round. He now has his dream ship"

This yacht is the 'Stiletto' and in an article about her I read this a few years ago -

"Chris Petrie first set eyes on Stiletto when he picked her out of the crowd at Burnham Week in 1962. He was just 18. She was making her debut. It was love at first sight. 'I remember saying to myself, "I want that boat one day." - Twenty three years later in 1985, and quite by chance, he spotted a broker's advert 'Rare chance to acquire Stiletto'. He didn't have to think twice to make a cherished dream a thrilling reality. When the long awaited moment arrived there was sweet satisfaction indeed in helming and owning such a classic thoroughbred."

I am very, very, very happy for both these people who made their boyhood dreams a reality - It really does make me smile - in a chaotic world, somewhere between ticking time and a hard chance and with the help of the Gods a dream was realised. There is something very satisfying in thinking that some at least defy the odds and make their dreams come true. ---- "Good on ya mate," is what us Kiwis say :-)



Dan Gurney said...

May the world conspire to fulfill your dream!

renee said...

Googled the article on the Barbican. A very instructive aticle on wooden Yacht building for a landlobber like me. I always like the stories when someone achieves his dreams.
For me it was visiting far away countries by bike.
The notion New Zealand and Australia suddenly brought back the remembrance of the book South Sea Vagabonds I read 45 years ago. Yesterday I got hold of a second hand copy, that I will read on my trip to NZ. Do you know what Johnny Wray did further in his life. In the epilog on the Friendly islands he mentions the signs of the second worldwar. I estimate that he was at that time around thirthy.

Alden Smith said...

Dan I have never subscribed to conspiracy theories, but in this case I shall become a conspiracy theorists with the intention of trying to aid and influence the wheels within wheels.

Alden Smith said...

Ben - Johnny Wray sold the Ngataki and built a big displacement power boat or 'launch' - she was a rather unusual looking vessel (I have seen a photograph of it many years ago). He cruised this launch around the Hauraki Gulf for a number of years - that is the only piece of knowledge of have him apart from what is contained in his book.

Dan Gurney said...

Hi, Alden--

I saw today this listing for an Alan Buchanan yacht for sale near here:

How about that for a conspiracy? If you've got $20K US, you're in. Just sail it back to NZ.

Alden Smith said...

I took a look at this yacht Dan and she looks very good, in fact I think I know the design. Anyway I think having purchased the plans for my dream ship (which is the 'Barbican') I will build her myself or have her built for me if the conditions are favourable.