Why wasn’t there a mutiny on the Bounty?
In the LA Times, from email from Claudene Christian to her friend Rex Halbeisen, the crew member who lost her life on the Bounty’s last voyage:
“You know me, I am not a mechanical person but the generators and engines on this ship are not the most reliable. They are always stewing over them. I would hate to be out to sea in a storm an [sic] the engines just quit or we have no power.”
This is sad, damning stuff to read.
From my friend Bob Wise’s Boat Bit blog, a year ago:
A friend called me the other day wanting to discuss some issues he had concerning helping someone else bring his boat down to the Caribbean and his “spidey” sense was kicking in and telling him that, just maybe, this particular passage with this boat/captain was not a great idea.
I’ve actually been told more than once that I take a somewhat cavalier view of sail education and my “any idiot can sail” theory is somewhat off-base. While I continue to consider sailing a very simple set of tasks that anyone can do (OK, maybe not this guy), there is a hard part involved and it is not about trimming a sail, remembering which side you pass a red buoy while returning to port, or being able to pick up a mooring without having it become a “day of shame”…
The hard part most people have is allowing their brain to actually fire with all cylinders and take advantage of the myriad inputs available to us… “Spidey” sense included.
Your gut instinct, intuition, and subconscious situational awareness are a sailors best friend but most folks on boats have a really hard time learning to listen to it, even when it is screaming DANGER WILL ROBINSON, DANGER!!!
You have to learn to listen…
As it happens, my friend listened and made the decision that this was not a passage that he wanted to have anything to do with and last I heard he was in a rented car heading home.
That friend was me. I was in Beaufort NC with my friend Dave (if you followed MON TIKI’s build, you’ve seen him,) and among my various concerns was that the boat’s recently overhauled engine was continually acting up, the boat’s master — a professional mechanic — couldn’t get it squared away, and the way the boat was set up, it was utterly dependent on a well-functioning engine to make a safe passage.
I didn’t want to be a quitter, and I didn’t want to go back on my commitment to get the boat in question back to St. Croix.
But it didn’t feel right, and we got off the boat. I left about $1000 worth of gear behind, and we got off the boat.
The boat made it safely to St. Croix. I have no regrets.