Tuesday, 2 June 2009

Oostende Voor Anker Pt 2

A big part of the festival is Beer.....I mean music. There are bands and folk singers playing at 2 venues throughout each day. They range from 5 piece Irish style groups to 10 dutchmen singing sea shanties.

Our personal favourites are a group called Hot Rats. Well worth going to see them if ever you get the chance.

This is them on the stage outside st peters church

Derek, our third crew member is a self confessed Hot Rats groupie. Here he is coming back laden with a bottle of specially brewed Oostende Voor Anker beer which we felt had to be consumed during the concert incase it spoilt while sitting in the bottle

They ended each of their sessions with a musical number featuring Phil, their resident spoons player

If you love boats of all shapes and sizes then its a must day out

Our Skipper Steve taking a turn around the deck of Valonia

Sunday afternoon although very hot was also very windy. This tall ship struggled a bit getting into her berth which was in the larger tidal Montgomery Dock. The crew of the three small yatchs behind her got a little twitchy

Finally, hidden very well amongst all the other boats I spotted an English Narrowboat. Sadly they were rafted up 6 boats from the pontoon so I never got a chance to meet the crew. They also blog about their cruising on the continental waterways and it can be found here Wandering Snail

Our thanks once again to the organisers and people of Ostend for a very warm welcome and such excellent hospitality during the weekend.
Sadly no commemorative plaque for me this year but you never know maybe Lady Elgar might make an appearance one day.......in my dreams lol

Oostende Voor Anker

Thanks to Laura and my mate steve conspiring together I was packed off friday afternoon to catch the Eurostar from St Pancras to Brussels and then local train to Ostend.
I knew Steve was making the trip in his new boat but being only 5 weeks before the expected arrival of Peanut I'd not made any plans as its a four day festival plus a couple of days either side for the crossing from England.

So it was a very nice surprise indeed to come home from work one evening last week and Laura presnted me with my train tickets. I finished work Friday morning, got a couple of hours sleep then caught the Underground from Uxbridge to St Pancras and just 2 hours later saw me waiting at Brussels Midi for the Intercity train to Ostend. Another hour and there I was, bum firmly in place on a chair in Flanagans bar drinking my first Grimbergen and catching up with the gossip from many old friends made over the years that we have been going to the festival.

It was the 10th anniversary of Oostende voor anker and I had only missed 2. Steve had only missed 1.

some pics of the event

London St Pancras Eurostar Terminal

Waiting at Bussels Midi for the connection to Ostend

Mercator dock looking towards the Station

My Berth for the weekend, MV Valonia an ex 1969 pilot boat

Ill add some more pics later when ive got them off the camera