|Ships:||Sailing ( 1)|
Beryl, born in 1905, was raised in a family of British soldiers and travelled widely throughout the world, some of which is described in her 1930s books The Stars My Blanket and Winter Shoes in Springtime, written under the name Beryl Miles. Charles R. Boxer, the distinguished historian and soldier, was one of her brothers.
In 1938 Beryl married Brigadier Miles Richard Smeeton. (Source: Wikipedia)
To read more about Beryl's journey in Seaport, check her storylines.
Are you a sailor by any chance? I have seen you in the harbor before. I need some advice from an experienced seafarer. If you need to unload your cargo first, I will wait.
So you are a captain. That is wonderful! I have been looking for someone just like you. Meet me at the Smiling Seal. It's my favorite inn. Just bring some money, they can be expensive.
|3||At the Smiling Seal|
So good of you to come. I am Beryl Smeeton, a farmer, adventurer, and a wife. And hopefully soon enough a sailor too. My husband and I don't have much experience in this field yet.
We love adventure and a challenge. Right now, we are looking to buy a ship. We have not yet decided what kind of vessel would be best. Should we go for a wooden boat or a metal ship?
|5||Are you hungry?|
I am starving. Let's eat something and I will tell you about our adventures. We were hiking up the Tirich Mir mountain in the Hindu Kush range. We didn't reach the peak but it was still a great hike.
|6||Found the one|
I have found one ship I like. But Miles, my husband, doesn't think we should buy her. Her sails are seriously damaged. Can you meet me at the port tomorrow and tell me your opinion?
Did you bring cloth for new sails? Perfect! It's decided, we are buying this ship! I just need to borrow some money. I don't have quite enough on hand right now. I will pay you back, I promise.
Her name is Tzu Hang. She was built in Hong Kong, that's why the Chinese name. I think we will keep it, it's quite exotic. Tzu Hang needs a few repairs and then she will be ready to sail.
I would feel better if Tzu Hang was kept in a boathouse while she undergoes the repairs. The weather in England is unpredictable. I don't want her to sustain more damage before she is seaworthy.
|10||Moving to Australia|
We are thinking about moving to Australia. Miles has always wanted to live there. Tzu Hang is still not ready to sail and all our things would not fit on her anyway. Can you take us on your ship?
We will be settling down in Melbourne. Miles will find a job and I will continue writing. I didn't mention it before? I wrote a few books about our adventures. I will send you copies.
Captain, we need your help again. We have decided to sail from Melbourne to England taking the route around Cape Horn. Will you join us? Please bring some fuel for the boat too.
It's so good to see you again. We have installed an auxiliary motor into the ship, so we need some fuel. Our friend John will be joining us and also our cat. She loves fish so let's take some with us.
|14||Plans for the voyage|
We also need some food and freshwater for ourselves. Can you go to the market and buy something? I still have to plan the voyage.
|15||A little anxious|
Before we set sail, I would like to have a few words with your crew. I know you will be joining us, captain, but I want some more reference for our first voyage. I am a bit nervous.
|16||Old clipper route|
Just load the crates on the ship and we are ready to go. We are taking the old clipper route, heading east through the Southern Ocean. Weight the anchor, captain!
The weather is pleasant for now and the ship is sailing smoothly. However, I noticed she is listing to the side a bit. Let's take a break on the nearest island and get some rocks to balance the ship.
|18||Find me some fruit|
We have been eating fish and jerky for so long. I miss some fresh fruit. Once you see land on the horizon, let's change the course and refill our supplies with something tasty.
|19||On to Cape Horn|
Since we are already taking a rest on land, let's fill our barrels with some salted fish too. They will be good to eat for much longer than the fruit. And now we can continue to Cape Horn.
The waves are really massive here. I am afraid one of them could tip us over and we will all end up in the water. Please take the rudder, captain. We need your skills right now.
|21||Taking on water|
Captain! Help us get to the shore. Tzu Hang is badly damaged. Her mast is broken. But we can still repair her if we get her ashore. But there are too few of us to accomplish that.
|22||On the beach|
Thankfully we were not far from the coast. Else we could have drowned in those waves. We need to go to the nearest town and buy material for the repairs.
I have managed to get everything we will need and a master shipbuilder to make the repairs on Tzu Hang. Unfortunately, I was not able to get an iron mast so we will have to use a wooden one.
The repairs will take longer than I expected. I will use the time to continue writing about our journey. And maybe we can taste some local specialties. Chilean wine is supposed to be delicious.
The master shipbuilder who is helping us with the repairs promised to help us for free. He just needs a hand with the building of his house. He needs to transport some bricks and materials.
During the accident, a lot of our supplies got destroyed by water. We need to wait for Tzu Hang to be repaired anyway, so let's use this time to catch some more fish.
|27||Ready to continue|
The ship is fixed. We just need a few strong people to help us get her on the water. Then we can continue our voyage. I hope we will finish it without any more accidents.
We are nearing Cape Horn and the clouds are closing up above us. Hold on to something, the sea is like a wild horse trying to shake us of it's back. This devilish cape won't let us pass.
The mast is broken again! These waves won't let us pass. We need to find some driftwood and use it as paddles to get to the shore. We can't continue with this kind of damage.
|30||Back on the coast|
We are not far from the town where they helped us repair our ship before. I will go there and try to negotiate a reasonable price. We don't have much money left.
|31||No help this time|
I have some bad news. The shipbuilder has no time to help us. We have no choice but try to fix the mast ourselves. Will you go look for some material we could use for the repairs?
Unfortunately, copper won't help us much here. And the weather is truly terrible. We need to find a shelter where we can stay and try to fix the ship before there are only cinders left of her.
I am afraid we won't be able to finish this voyage. But we will try again. For now, I am going to finish my accounting of this journey. Can you call your crew to come and pick us up?
Don't worry, captain. I know you did your best to help us. Sometimes you must fail before you can succeed. Let's get something to eat while we wait for our ship to England.
|35||I will succeed|
I won't leave Tzu Hang here. We just need to fix her mast and she will be ready for another adventure. I will yet pass that Cape Horn on her. Let's find a way to load her up on your ship.
Thank you for helping us bring Tzu Hang to England. Without you, we would have been stuck in Chile. We will repair her and plan our next voyage. Are you still interested in joining us?
|37||Time to relax|
Miles went to look for a good shipwright to fix Tzu Hang. I need to go to the publisher to show him my new book. But first, let's relax a bit. It was a tiring voyage.
The publisher liked my book and Miles found someone to fix Tzu Hang. The repairs will be expensive but this time we will make sure she withstands even the worst weather.
|39||We will stay|
We have decided to stay in England for a while. Miles bought a nice land on the outskirts. We will build a small house there. Perhaps you could help us with the materials.
|40||See you, captain|
Should we need your assistance again, I will contact you. But I understand you are busy with your own affairs. We will try to make do on our own. Say hello to your crew from us.