I’m on a boat! At the moment I’m in Klintholm Havn, a small Danish fishing village on the southern island Møn. In the last week I’ve travelled from Dublin to here via Copenhagen, Aalborg and Aarhus. In the past two days we’ve sailed more than 100 miles. We’re waiting for the boat to be lifted so we can clean the bottom and continue on our way to Spain.
I flew into Copenhagen last Wednesday evening. I got to the hostel around 11pm – late flights and public transport – and ended up meeting two Canadians and two Americans. We had a few quiet drinks that evening and then spent the following day cycling around the city on rented bikes. It was an awesome way to see the city and was one of the most affordable things about my time there. 100 krone (15 euro-ish) for a bike for 24 hours was well worth it. We saw many of the sites and generally enjoyed the city.
In the early evening I split off and went to train in Choke BJJ Copenhagen. Apparently the place quietens right down during the summer so there was only the coach and two others there. Luckily, the quality was shit hot. SP, the coach rolled – and went through – everyone; and the other two guys were both technically excellent and I had good, hard rolls with them.
After getting choked out a few times, I headed back to the hostel and met up with the group from earlier as well as a Welsh guy and a Finnish guy. We hit the town for the night and started off drinking wine outside a jazz bar. Once that closed we moved on to a more standard pub for a few hours. The two Americans were catching an early flight so were going straight from the bar to the airport.
The following morning I packed up, checked out and slowly made my way to the airport for my afternoon flight to Aalborg. It wasn’t a rush but I didn’t have time to dawdle around the city. I made the mistake of heading straight to Terminal One where my flight was from – the domestic flights left what was little more than a shed with a café – and so didn’t get the opportunity to do much in the airport. The flight was short, by the time we took off the pilot had to start the landing procedures. My godfather, Peter, and his brother, Billy, met me in the airport and we drove to the boat.
There’d been a slight change of plan; rather than heading from Aalborg to a shipyard in Strandby in the north where I’d meet them, the boat had been delayed in Aalborg and was planning to head south to Klintholm where there was a lift that could take the boat out so we could clean the hull. Once I arrived, the boat was ready to set off. We spent the night in Aarhus – I went for a wander in the city and then to bed early – and left the following morning.
We were up early the Saturday morning to fill the fuel tanks and start are trip. It was 110 miles to Klintholm and we’d two days to do it. Our aim was to get 70 miles done the first day. Unfortunately for us, the winds were all coming from the south so there was a lot more motoring than sailing. Even still, we managed to get the guts of 70 miles done and anchored off a small island. We’d been up since 7 and only put the anchor down at 10 so everyone was in bed fairly early.
Sunday was another early start. After some slight drama involving seaweed in the engine water intake we were once again motoring into the wind. Sunday was far more dramatic – we passed a pair of humback whales, a mother and her calf, just as we were approaching Møn. The weather was spectacular – it reached around 25º – so I spend a good bit of the afternoon sunbathing on the aft deck. We’d made significant distance the previous day so we got into Klintholm at around 5. After tying up and tidying the boat, I went off and had a poke around the town.
Klintholm is a nice quiet spot. It’s mainly a fishing village but there’s also quiet a few tourists through. Most of the town is aimed at the tourists with a couple of restaurants and a general shop. I ended up eating in a lovely Italian restaurant. The owner had come to Klintholm on holiday twelve years ago and ended up staying there! After that it was back to the boat and to bed.
Today we are waiting for the crane operators to arrive so we can lift the boat to clean and paint the hull. If all goes well – and it should – we’ll be out of here by Thursday or Friday. The winds are meant to be easterly for the week so we’ll have another long days sailing the 70 miles to Kiel in Germany. Then it’s through the Kiel Canal for two days and into the North Sea.
I’m writing this from Klintholm, a small Danish fishing village on the coast of Møn. We’ve sailed 110 miles in the last two days. June was a good month – but for the first time, I failed at a challenge. I got my gym sessions in for most weeks (8, 9, 7, 8) but I failed to do my 10 image series. I did do a lot of other photography though – I spent two sessions shooting the Bailey Lighthouse for the image series, and also did three studio shoots with bodybuilders. This, along with getting everything set for travelling this month, meant I just didn’t get the two or three days I needed to dedicate to doing the series. It’ll now happen in August.
Financially things were good. The photo shoots and writing were nice – there was also continued progress in other areas that will pay off down the line. Hopefully in the next month or two for some of it.
Fitness was obviously great. I got a lot of training done which I was happy about. I got some serious strength increases with this month’s sessions in Compound Fitness and it was nice to get some jits sessions in again.
The reading challenge continues well. I’m still a good few books ahead of my goal. Unfortunately this month I got heavily side tracked by the Dresden Files. Amazing books, but not the most literary.
One thing that was fun – even though I nominally failed – was the photo project. I explored the area around the Bailey Lighthouse, one afternoon, for where there were going to be good photo opportunities. I then went back a few days later at 4 am to get them at sunrise. This is definitely something that will be good to do more of going forward.
For July – I’m on a boat. My time is kind of free but also severely limited by what I have the opportunity to do. Internet access is patchy, sailing can be relaxing or hands on depending on the weather and I’m just not sure when I’ll be anywhere. The one thing I know for sure, is I’ll have a lot of opportunities to read! I’m going to take the soft challenge this month and aim to read double my required number of books – I’m going for 8. Even though I’ve plenty of reading time this will, I think, still be a stretch.
Just a quick update. I’ve booked my flights to Copenhagen for next month. I’m spending two nights in the city there then making my way up to Strandby on the North tip of Denmark. Once there, I’m getting on a yacht and we’re going to be sailing all the way to Vigo in Spain. The route is most likely to be down the inside coast of Denmark, through the Kiel Canal in Germany, across the top of Belgium and the Netherlands, the full length of the French Atlantic coast, then across the Bay of Biscay to the Atlantic North coast of Spain and on in to Vigo.
After that plans are pretty loose. I may head deeper into Spain or back up into France to meet up with some friends or family. I could also spend some time enjoying the weather in Vigo, or else make my way back to Dublin, possibly via London.
Last week I did something interesting – I built a computer that runs OS X. In theory, the only way you are meant to be able to get a computer that runs OS X is to buy it from Apple; in practice, Apple’s computers are built mostly using standard parts and if you get the same parts you can build a computer that supports OS X. I took on the challenge for a series of tutorials for Tuts+, the site I do most of my writing for.
I am writing this post right now using my Hackintosh. It runs great. There are a few quirks that still have to be teased out. A quick Google shows that almost no one has a Hackintosh that works perfectly first time. I am working on a series of three tutorials describing the part selection, hardware build and software setup that will appear on Tuts+ in the next few weeks.
The computer I built, while not ridiculously powerful, is still a very capable machine. It is mainly built around a 3.7GHz i5 processor and 16GB of RAM – perfect for photo editing! There’s also a video card with a gig of VRAM, although that’s not going to be used over much. Overall I’m pretty happy with it. It was a fun project and I’m looking forward to sharing the tutorials.
A tweet from Andy McKenzie this morning reminded me of a problem I used to have with Apple’s puritan autocorrect – every time I wanted to say “fuck”, “fucking” or “fucked”, my iPhone decided that I obviously meant “duck”, “ducking” or “ducked”. Seriously, unless you work as a duck breeder, I doubt anyone uses the word duck more than the word fuck. Fortunately there is a simple solution that I have been using for a while.
iOS let’s you create AutoCorrect shortcuts. A lot of people, including me, use them to fill in their phone number or email address just by typing two or three characters rather than the full string. You can also use them to solve the “ducking” problem. If you create a shortcut so that “duck” is the shortcut for “fuck”, “ducking” for “fucking” and “ducked” for “fucked” the AutoCorrect problem is switched – now you have to be careful not to invite your nephew to go and feed the fucks.
Creating a new AutoCorrect shortcut is simple:
- Go to Settings > General > Keyboard > Shortcuts.
- Click on the + in the top right corner of the screen.
- Enter the word you want to AutoCorrect to in the top box and the shortcut in the second box and click Save.
- Problem solved!