Glossary: A Hitchhikers Guide to Berriland

Alphabetic listing of places, words, phrases and acronyms with their definitions, carefully and skilfully crafted by Alex’s sister, Isabella. Crib for the underlying themes and jokes.

A | B | C | D | E | F | G | H | I | J | K | L | M | N | O | P | Q | R | S | T | U | V | W | X | Y | Z
4 p - Prudence, Patience, Persistence and Perseverance
Adak - A city on Adak island (Aleutians, Alaska) and a former US naval base.
Adastra - Adastra Aerial Surveys, Australia -
AIS - Automatic Identification System. An automatic tracking system used on ships and by vessel traffic services (VTS) for identifying and locating vessels.
Allen’s Jelly Snakes - Natural fruit-flavoured sweets carried on board.
Alto-Cu - alto cumulus clouds
Amchitka - Amchitka Pass:a strait in the Aleutian Islands, between the Rat Islands group to the west and the Delarof Islands to the east. Amchitka Island was the site of the Cannikin nuclear test – the biggest underground explosion ever conducted by the USA (as far as we know).
Amodino - Steel boat built in NZ and sailed through the North West Passage with us.
AMSA - Australian Maritime Safety Authority
Amukta - A small yet mountainous island in the Islands of Four Mountains group lying between the Fox Islands and the Andreanof Islands in the Aleutian Islands.
Analects - From wikipedia: The Analects, or Lunyu, also known as the Analects of Confucius, is the collection of sayings and ideas attributed to the Chinese philosopher Confucius and his contemporaries, traditionally believed to have been written by Confucius' followers. See a quotation here
Archer's Tool - Strongbow Cider
Arlette’s shortbread - Clearly worth going all the way to the Falklands for!
Arv - Afternoon
Ashes, The - One for the cricket tragics. Google it!
Assy - Asymetric spinnaker
Aunty Gordon's Magic Catalyser - Gordon’s Gin. Nothing else has the same effect.
Autohelm - An electric device that uses the boat’s instruments and direct commands to steer the boat. It can steer a compass course or follow the wind. Both require constant vigilance by the crew.
Bare poling - Explanation here
Barn Door - Metaphor for whatever we were aiming at. Derived from the saying “Couldn’t hit a barn door at five paces” used to describe anyone who can’t shoot straight.
Barnacles - Explanation here (Wikipedia)
Barrow - Point Barrow or Nuvuk is a headland on the Arctic coast in the U.S. state of Alaska. It is the northernmost point of all the territory of the United States. More on wikipedia
Bartolomeu Dias - Portuguese explorer. He sailed around the southernmost tip of Africa in 1488, the first European known to have done so. More on wikipedia.
Beanie - Knitted hat
Beaufort Scale - The first effective scale to estimate wind speeds and their effects. Created by Admiral Sir Francis Beaufort (1774-1857). The scale starts with 0 and goes to a high force of 12
Beaulieu River - River on south coast of England where Alex grew up
Beechey - Beechey Island is an island located in the Canadian Arctic Archipelago of Nunavut, Canada. More on wikipedia
Beep - A short story by James Blish
Bellerive Yacht Club - At Hobart; they very kindly allowed us jetty space to get ourselves organised after the 2004 Sydney-Hobart Race and we departed from Bellerive for C1 on Jan 10 2005.
Belmore South - Sydney School corresponding with Berri
Belugas - These small whales are superficially more like oversize, white, friendly dolphins.
Bikini - Bikini is an atoll in the Micronesian Islands of the Pacific Ocean, part of Republic of the Marshall Islands. More on wikipedia.
Bligh - William Bligh – Sailed with Cook and later given command of HMS Bounty. Most famous for his 1200 mile open boat voyage after his crew mutinied.
Blow The Wind Southerly - English folk song made famous by Kathleen Ferrier and much played at Alex’s home.
Blue Screen of Death - What happens when the computer crashes
BOG - Brolga Owners Group
Boggers - Brolga Owners
Boggers Bash - Celebratory gathering of Brolga Owners
Boot Ferals - Interesting biological colonies that grow and fester in seaboots. There are left foot ferals and right foot ferals and occasionally they get to cross breed and create fierce hybrids.
Brisvegas - The city of Brisbane, Australia
Brittany - NASA scientist co-ordinating Berri - ISS communications. And, separately, part of France
Brolga - Berrimilla is a Brolga 33 designed by Peter Joubert. For specs, see here
Burrumbuttock - It’s a small rural town in NSW, 30 kms north of Albury. Their school has had a significant involvement in the protection of Australia’s native Squirrel Glider.
Bus shelter - Explanation here
Call me when the Cross turns over - Novel by D’Arcy Niland written 1957
Cape Agulhas - The southernmost point of Africa, where the Atlantic meets the Indian Ocean. The real corner, south east of the Cape of Good Hope.
CCA - Cruising Club of America
Chain Locker - Waterside pub in Falmouth, UK
Channel 16 - VHF Radio Channel used for establishing initial contact and for emergency purposes only.
Chateau Cardboard - Wine in a box
Chilean Anaesthetist - Chilean Wine discovered in the Falkllands.
Codger - Some definitions: used affectionately to refer to an eccentric but amusing old man; derived from the word cadge, to beg, or get by begging, hence, a codger is one who gets his living by trickery or begging; derived from Turkish kodjah, meaning an old man or woman. Take your pick
Cone of Silence - Plastic roll-down curtain to protect nav table /instruments from water
Conspiracy Theory - Conspiracy Theory: the epic is simply a mock-up-boat in Fox Studios. (See also Bus Shelter) – Based on the nutty idea that NASA never reached the Moon but faked the whole thing in the Hollywood studios
Consultation - A regular engagement with alcohol. One might say this whole epic is a Consultation with a bit of a sail round it. See also Conservation Mode; Linear and Parallel Methods of Consultation
Consultative Conundrum - There were two unmarked bottles – which was which - Lambs Navy Rum or Glenfiddich?
Coolgardie Fridge - Coolgardie Fridge: Improvised cooler using the heat transfer that occurs when water evaporates. Invented in Coolgardie in Western Australia.
Cordon Berri 5 star - various “recipes”
Cowes - Seaport town on the Isle of Wight (UK). A home for international yacht racing.
CPA - Closest Point of Approach- a navigational term used when plotting the courses of two boats to determine whether a close-quarters (potential collision) situation is likely to occur.
CSIRO - Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research Organisation
CYCA - Cruising Yacht Club of Australia
Dame Ellen - Dame Ellen MacArthur
Derwent - The Derwent is a river in Tasmania, Australia. Its large estuary forms the port of Hobart.
Dinos - Dinoflagellates - Microscopic, (usually) unicellular, flagellated, often photosynthetic protists, commonly regarded as "algae". More here.
DMG - Distance Made Good; More here
Dodger - An awning that covers a small part of the forward part of the cockpit (about 30cm). It makes a small sheltered place that the person who's on watch can cower under as waves go over.
Dog Watch - A watch at sea is 4 hours except for the period between 1600 and 2000 which is split into two 2 hour watches to create an odd number of watches in each 24 hour period and allow the crew to rotate through all the watches over time.
Donk - The engine – a donkey is a beast of burden that does all the work and engines driving winches and other labour saving devices are known as donkey engines.
Dontevereventhinkofitandifyoudoyouremad - Making tea in adverse circumstances
Dr Boag - A beer brewed in Launceston, Tasmania
Dr Cooper - Coopers Sparkling Ale: - according to Alex: “brewed in the bottle, so a bit of sludge comes with it - best beer on the planet - beats a Pan Galactic Gargleblaster hands down”. Also a home brew from a Cooper’s Kit, perfected by onboard master-brewer Pete. See Pete’s interesting equation
Dr Gordon - Gordon’s Gin
Dr Grumpy - A particularly desperate brew of gin and cider
DSC - Digital Selective Calling. DSC radios have the facility to alert another vessel or rescue centre directly.
DTD - Distance to Dutch (Harbour)
Dublin Doctor - Guinness
Dumper - Surfing term for a breaking wave that ‘dumps’ the surfer.
Easymail - Software application for use with SatCom C devices.
Eeyore - The lugubrious donkey in AA Milne’s Winnie the Pooh.
Eleanor - Daughter of Alex Whitworth
EPIRB - Emergency Position Indicating Radio Beacon
ETA - Estimated Time of Arrival
ETE - Estimated Time Enroute - the estimated time to get from where you are to a particular place - as opposed to ETA which is the the actual day/time that you expect to get there. There is a facility for checking ETE to a waypoint on GPS.
EVA - Extravehicular Activity eg spacewalk
Examiner - She who asks awkward questions of the crew and tests them with difficult tasks.
Fastnet - Fastnet Race: 608 mile biennial race from Cowes, UK, Isle of Wight, to the Fastnet Rock off Southern Ireland, finishing in Plymouth. Berrimilla took part in 2005 and 2009.
Fenwick - A friend and clearly a colourful character
Fernando de Noronha - A Brasilian archipelago of 21 islands and islets in the Atlantic Ocean, 354 km (220 mi) offshore from the Brazilian coast. More on Wikipedia.
Fiddle - Fiddle: a little wooden wall to stop things sliding off a flat surface
Five Capes - Cape Horn, Cape of Good Hope/Cape Agulhas, Cape Leeuwin, South East Cape (Tasmania), South West Cape (New Zealand)
Fleeces - Could be swindles or sheeps’ wool or special thermal clothing for people in hostile environments.
Fleming - Fleming, Kevin: manufacturer of stainless steel self steering device, aka Kevvo, used on Berrimilla and countless others; (Kevin Fleming, you're an absolute bloody gem! )
Follow my Wallow - Trying to keep the boat moving with nowt on the wind indicator. Loosely derived from Flanders and Swann song “Mud, Glorious Mud” containing the words “Follow me follow, Down to the Hollow, Where we can Wallow in Mud, Glorious Mud".
Franklin - Sir John Franklin, arctic explorer who died with all his men in 1847 while seeking the Northwest Passage.
Funsters - A team from Belmore Public School who suggested the best caption in Speedy’s caption competition.
Furler - A device fitted around the length of the forestay(s) of a sailing yacht that enables the crew to roll the headsail partially around the forestay and so make its effective area smaller (the same as reefing) or to roll it up completely (furling it). The sail would be furled when at anchor or otherwise not being used. There is a full description here .
G&T - Gin and Tonic
Gareloi - A volcano in the Aleutian Islands of Alaska, USA. More on Wikipedia.
Geezer - Dictionaries define a geezer as an old person, generally an eccentric old man. Its origin likely in the word masquerader (colloquially, guiser) from Middle English gysar. Go figure, as the Americans say.
Gerzillions - An awful lot of something: usually stars
Gizmo - Some kind of gadget or other, normally infuriating
Glenfiddich - Malt whisky: a well known Scots Consultant
Gooseneck - The fitting that connects the boom or a spinnaker pole to the mast.
Gosford-Lord Howe - Gosford-Lord Howe race:?
Great Bear - Great Bear / Ursa Major / The Plough / The Saucepan: names for the same defining constellation in northern hemisphere
Great Circle - See here (Wikipedia)
Greenies - When waves come over the boat as solid water rather than spray they can exert massive force. Usually the water runs down the sides of the boat and out through the scuppers. Your more determined greenie (not to be confused with a conservationist) will send a flooding wall of water across the cabin top, over the dodger and into the cockpit and it may smash anything it meets on the way; see also Dodger, Scuppers
Grib - Weather files. Graphics in Binary file: GRIB files associate a specific weather datum (eg wind velocity or atmospheric pressure) with a geographic position. Because the resulting file is a collection of these points they are extremely small and so ideal over slow links such as sailmail.
Groupama - In this context a massive trimaran attempting a round-the-world record for the Jules Verne Trophy. They overtook us twice – once before we reached Cape Town on their first attempt which they abandoned after damaging a hull. They preceded us into Cape Town and we visited them there. They sailed back to France and set off again and overtook us way to the south before we reached Hobart. More about Groupama here (Wikipedia)
Gunwale Bum - Lesions, looking like pimples on the bum, caused by pressure, chafing, heat, damp etc; sometimes known as spotty botty, skipper’s seat or barnacle butt. . Unbelievably painful and irritating.
Gust Book - The Guest Book on the Berri site, so named to prevent spammers finding it to offer, or request unusual services and medications. The Gust book is here.
Gusts - Short increases in wind speed – or people who signed the Gust Book.
Gybe - Gybe - A sailing term for turning the boat so that the stern passes through the wind. Potentially dangerous if not controlled because the wind can fill an uncontrolled mainsail from the wrong side and crash it across the boat, possibly causing damage to the rig and anyone getting in the way.
H4 - The first marine chronometer, designed by John Harisson. More on wikipedia.
Hadar - Major star pointer to Southern Cross with Rigil Kent
Halyards - Lines to hoist the sails
Heaving to - Setting the boat so that it lies roughly parallel to the waves and at right angles to the wind and moves slowly forwards. This movement is known as ‘fore-reaching’ and is usually achieved by backing the jib, freeing or lowering the mainsail and lashing the helm to leeward. It is often an effective way of slowing everything down and sitting out bad weather but some boats will not heave to because of their underwater shape or other factors and must be sailed out of trouble. Heaving-to is not the same as lying a-hull where all sail is dropped and the boat is left more or less to its own devices.
Henry Knight - Henry Knight died of starvation on the emigrant ship Java (from England to Australia) and was buried at sea on the 6th Feb 1853 in the S Atlantic - 28.35 S, 26.09 W. On the way home from Falmouth (1st circumnavigation) Berrimilla passed about 100 miles to the north and sent him some chocolate in a paper boat. Henry's sister Susan died in sight of Cape Town and was buried at sea 8 miles SE of the lighthouse. We waved to her on the 2ncircumnavigation from very much closer. More here
HF - High Frequency – usually refers to HF radio which is long range digital radio that Berrimilla used to send all but a few of the logs on both circumnavigations. The radio was connected via a Pactor 3 digital modem to Alex’s laptop and used the Sailmail software application called Airmail to send emails and pull in emails, weather and GRIB files. Airmail also supports Iridium satellite telephone messaging and Alex used this as backup when the HF radio died approaching England.
HHGTTG - The Hitch Hiker’s Guide to the Galaxy by Douglas Adams; essential reading for those trying to understand these logs. You may be none the wiser once you’ve read it, but at least you’ll have tried. More here
Hilary - Alex’s partner and Katherine’s mother
HMP - NASA's Houghton Mars Project camp on Devon Island in the Canadian Arctic.
Hole in the Milky Way - aka as the Coalsack Dark Nebula
Hombre apercebido medio combatido - Quoted from Inspector Morse novel by Colin Dexter 180; translates roughly as “the man who is prepared has half the battle won
Hooning - As far as I can gather, if Berri were a horse, she’d have the bit between her teeth to be hooning
Hrungecomely Blurbleflunket - Happy birthday
HWS - Heavy Weather Sailing, 6th edition by Peter Bruce, Adlard Coles UK, 2008 (or earlier editions). The bible for offshore sailors.
Iditarod - An annual long-distance sled dog race run in early March from Anchorage to Nome (Alaska). An annual long-distance sled dog race run in early March from Anchorage to Nome (Alaska). Approximately 1600 miles and takes the northern or southern route in alternate years.
Inuksuk - A stone landmark or cairn built by humans, used by the Inuit, Inupiat, Kalaallit, Yupik, and other peoples of the Arctic region of North America. More here (Wikipedia)
Iron Pot - A small island lying close to the south-eastern coast of Tasmania around the entrance to the River Derwent. It is the site of Tasmania’s first lighthouse.
Isabella - Alex's sister
Isle of Wight - The largest island of England, located in the English Channel, separated from the mainland by a strait called The Solent.
Isochrones - Joining points on a chart that were the same number of days out from, say, London en route to Cape Horn using different tracks.
ISS - International Space Station
ITCZ - Inter Tropical Convergence Zone, also known as The Doldrums
Izzo - Isabella, Alex’s sister
James Cook - British explorer, navigator, cartographer, and captain in the Royal Navy. He made 3 voyages to the Pacific Ocean, during which he achieved the first recorded European contact with the eastern coastline of Australia and the Hawaiian Islands, and the first recorded circumnavigation of New Zealand. More on wikipedia.
John Smith Smoothies - According to Alex this comes in green can with widget so has lovely creamy head. First tasted in Falklands.
Joubert - Joubert, Peter: mechnical engineer, specialising in fluid mechanics, now retired. Highly respected sailor and designer of the Brolga and other yachts; many mentions but see 115; Pete’s meeting with him, 122
K1 - An accurate copy of John Harrison's H4 (first marine chronometer) , made by Larcum Kendall. James Cook used K1 on his second and third voyages.
K2 - The third precision marine chronometer made after the H4, designed by John Harrison. K2 was on HMS Bounty.
Katherine - Alex’s daughter
Kathleen Ferrier - See Blow the Wind Southerly. Ferrier was a famous Scottish classical singer and a favourite in Alex’s family. She died way too young.
Kelp - Types of brown algae, which hold on to the rocky sea bottom with root-like structures. Floats in huge mats close to land and potentially capable of fouling a propeller or a rudder. More here (Wikipedia)
Kevvo - Stainless steel self steering device, built by Kevin Fleming, used on Berrimilla and countless others
Kite - Sailors’ slang for a spinnaker
Knockdown - When the boat is severely rolled or knocked over sideways, normally when beam on to big rolling breakers.
Knot - -- Speed: definition of speed at sea. One knot is one nautical mile per hour. The nautical mile is about 1.15 % longer than the "statute" mile used on land. A knot is about half a metre per second. -- A knot is also the result of winding a rope around itself or another rope to make a join or a loop .
Krikkit robot - A robot from the planet Krikkit (The Hitch Hiker’s Guide to the Galaxy)
Lackersteens - Marmalade that went round Cape Horn. Izzo has the empty tin!
Lakonia - Lakonia, The: - Alex’s memories of maritime tragedy in 1963. More here (Wikipedia)
Land's End - It is the most westerly point of mainland Cornwall and England, about eight miles (13 km) west-southwest of Penzance.
Lazarette - A small, below deck storage space at the stern of a vessel
Lee cloth - Netting or canvas along the side of a bunk arranged to prevent the sleeper from falling out in violent weather.
Leroy - Leroy Chiao: International Space Station Commander, Expedition 10, at time Berrimilla first made contact. Bio here.
LHI - Lord Howe Island. LHI is situated 700 kilometres north east of Sydney. A race to from Gosford to LHI takes place every October and Berrimilla has taken part for several years - obviously not in 2005!
Linear Method of Consultation - Linear Method of Consultation (LMC) as opposed to Parallel Method (PMC): - two systems for conducting a discussion with any of the resident Doctors
Lizzie - Lizzie the Whizzer: Berrimilla's wind generator
Lizzie, Joe and Harvey - Youngest Berri fans we know about. Hi L,J,H!! You made it to the glossary! Berri Cool.
Loisin, Pascal - Winner of the 2005 two-handed Fastnet ahead of Berri.
Lykiardopulo - Lykiardopulo, Nick: RORC 2005 award winner, along with Alex and Pete
M.O.B. - Man Overboard
Malcom Robinson - Joint (Hobart-based) Berri webmaster with Steve Jackson.
Malta - Where Alex was born. Pete and Alex flew out there in June 2005.
Manacles - From the Cornish Maen Eglos or Church Rocks, named because St Keverne’s church above provided a vital sailors’ landmark to avoid these infamous rocks at the entrance to Carrick Roads and Falmouth Harbour
Marvin - The manically depressed robot with a “brain the size of a planet” from HHGTTG
Mc Vities - The best biscuits for dunking
Mercator Projection - Method of drawing a map which allows a straight course to be plotted simply, but does not take into account the curvature of the Earth; see also Great Circle
Meridian - An imaginary great circle on the surface of the Earth, passing through North and South geographic poles. All points on the same meridian have the same longitude. Meridian can also be used to describe either half of such a circle from pole to pole
Merlin - Merlin calculator
Minipooptillionth - A very, very, little bit, and definitely smaller than a pooptillionth
MMSI - Maritime Mobile Station Identity; used for radios with digital selective calling (DSC), as well as AIS (Automatic Identification System) transponders. It allows two vessels with radios that have this capability to exchange information about who they are and where they're going without need for voice contact . There is a unique numeric identifier for each user of AIS system.
Moitessier - Moitessier, Bernard: single-handed circumnavigator famous for abandoning 1969 Golden Globe Challenge, for very interesting idealistic reasons, when victory was in sight
MSL - Mean Sea Level; the height of the sea after averaging out changes of wind, waves and tide
Mungies - Beans sprouted on board if it’s warm enough
Murphy - 1- The inventor of Murphy’s Law which states (in various ways) that if something can go wrong, it will. 2- Irish beer
Nautical mile - About 15 % larger than the "statute" mile used on land
Noice - Alexism for quite a lot of things which taste good or are going especially well
North West Passage - The Northwest Passage is a sea route through the Arctic Ocean, along the northern coast of North America via waterways amidst the Canadian Arctic Archipelago, connecting the Atlantic and Pacific Oceans. More here.
NSW - New South Wales. State in the East of Australia. New South Wales' capital city is Sydney.
Og - Oggin: naval slang for the sea, the ocean, where you go if you fall overboard…
Old Geezer’s Trolley - He, and what, brings the e mail printouts in fantasy Berriland
Omar Khayyam - “Awake! For morning in the Bowl of Night” was part-quoted by Alex in response to the night sky; more of the poem can be seen here
Pan Galactic Gargle Blaster - Invented by Zaphod Beeblebrox in HHGTTG. Unfortunately its ingredients are unavailable on this planet but its effects are described as like having your brains smashed out by a slice of lemon wrapped round a large gold brick; 128; see also Dr Cooper; HHGTTG
Panasonic Toughbook CF18 - Berri’s laptop computer used for sailmail, to obtain grib files etc. Has suffered quite a bashing in knockdowns. For more detailed specs of electronics and software, see here (PDF)
Party Gear - Full wet weather gear
Pastor Flagon - Well-known Australian Consultant with a religious bent, recommended by Fenwick
Patagonian Cruise Net - A radio link between boats operating in Antarctica, in the Pacific, South Atlantic and the Chilean Channels run by - it seems - any one of several boats that may be more or less central and can talk to others.
Pelagia - Pelagia’s goat: A (non McVitie’s) digestive censor of overblown log nonsense called for occasionally by Alex. From the book Captain Corelli’s Mandolin by Louis de Bernieres.
Pelagics - The Pelagics: fleet of two expedition sailing vessels available for expedition charter to high latitude destinations in both Hemispheres
Pelican Clip - A metal clip which folds back on itself to tension lashings and other lines. On its own has proved unreliable in securing the liferaft.
Penta Comstat - A private radio communication service for yachts and pleasure craft, now sadly no longer available.
PHS - Performance Handicapping System – a somewhat arbitrary handicapping system for racing yachts based on the yachts’ performance in recent races. Looked on with scorn by rock star racers who wear their DuBarrys to briefings.
Plodders Motto - Planning, Practice, Prudence, Patience and Perseverance. And a Pee bucket for our far too agile bladders, but that's another story.
Point Nemo - Point Nemo is the point in the oceans that is farthest from land. Situated at 48°52.6′S 123°23.6′W, in the South Pacific. Berrimilla passed to the north of it.
Pooptillionth - A very little bit; see also Minipooptillionth, which is even smaller.
Portuguese Man o’ War - Physalia physali - also known as the Bluebottle. Not strictly speaking a jellyfish but a colony of mutually dependent individuals (polyps) supported by a float which is in itself a single individual; can give intensely painful and sometimes dangerous sting.
Propagation - In the logs, this refers to the radiation of signal energy and is customarily qualified by the words abysmal, ratshit or lousy
Pulpit - The railing at the bow of a boat, which sometimes extends past the deck.
Pushpit - The railing around the deck at the stern of a yacht.
R/V - Rendezvous
RANSA - Royal Australian Navy Sailing Association; a sailing club located in Sydney, Australia.
Ray - 1-The autopilot; 2-Human's name
RCC - Royal Cruising Club
RCMP - Royal Canadian Mounted Police – The Mounties
RCYC - Royal Cornwall Yacht Club, Falmouth, UK
Reef - -- As a verb – to shorten sail, to use reefing lines or other techniques to make the working part of a sail smaller and so reduce its power as the wind rises. --- As a noun, (1) the part of the sail that has been shortened, folded or rolled. May be referred to as a slab or a slab reef which is a particular way of forming a reef. -- As a noun (2) – a bank of coral, rocks or other obstruction usually close to a shoreline and potentially dangerous to sailors.
Reverse Osmosis - A process that can remove salt from water by forcing the water through a semi-permeable membrane under high pressure; 365; see also desalinator
RFD - Australian distributors of specialised safety equipment, including lifereafts and lifejackets.
Rhumb Line - See wikipedia (Wikipedia). See also Great Circle.
Rigil Kent - Major pointer in Southern Cross with Hadar
RNLI - Royal National Lifeboat Institution (UK & Ireland). Run mostly by volunteers, heroes all.
Roaring Forties - A region of westerly winds in south temperate latitudes. These are most developed south of 40°S
Rolex - Renowned makers of timepieces and sponsors of many sporting events including Sydney-Hobart and Fastnet Races
RORC - Royal Ocean Racing Club, located in London
RORC Seamanship Trophy 2005 - Awarded to Berrimilla
Rutter - Derived from ‘routier’ the French word for the narrative logs kept by early navigators describing their voyages – how they got there and the landmarks, stars, wave patterns, native tribes and everything they used to find their way and get back that might be helpful to later sailors. They were highly prized documents and considerable efforts were made by nations and individuals to obtain them by legal and illegal means. Sadly, many of the most historically interesting rutters were thought to have been destroyed in the Lisbon earthquake and fire in 1755.
RYA - Royal Yachting Association. A British organisation which represents the interests of those who go boating for pleasure as well as designing and monitoring training schemes; its membership is open to all boat users.
RYCT - Royal Yacht Club of Tasmania
Sailmail - Sailmail is the system that Berrimilla uses for email communication. It is a non-profit association of yacht owners operating a network of private coast stations in the maritime Mobile Radio Service.
Sando - Australian sandwich
Sarah - Pete Crozier's daughter
Sarau - Yacht with which Berri had a rendezvous at sea
Satcom C - Satcom: A worldwide communication system using the INMARSAT satellite network and allowing transfer of text and data (not voice) using compact and relatively cheap equipment
schooshling - The sound the sea makes as it slides past the boat hull when you're going really fast (Kimbra-ism)
Scilly Islands - An archipelago off the southwestern tip of the Cornish peninsula of Great Britain.
Scupper Me Dingbats - One of many possible ways to express considerable surprise.
Scuppers - Holes cut in the rail along the outer edge of the deck to let water run out
Shiiit - Extended shit...
Shilland - Shilland, Brian: much-lauded sailmaker for Berri
Sked - Short for schedule. A pre-arranged (scheduled) time and frequency for radio contact often co-ordinated by a shore station, such as Penta Comstat, which is monitoring location and safety of boats in their area. Failure to respond to one or more sked can be a sign of trouble
Slarty - Megrathean planet designer from HHGTTG whose favourite job was doing “the wrinkly bits in fjords”; He carved his face on the big rock above Baie de L’Oiseau in the Kerguelens.
Slocum - Slocum, Joshua: Nova Scotia-born sailor who departed Boston in 1895 aged 51, to sail around the world alone in his sloop Spray. He returned, successful, in 1898. He is a kind of patron saint of small boat voyagers and navigators and inspiration to many who have followed him; see this log.
SOB - Software on Board, from Digitboat – navigation software used by Alex for both circumnavigations.
South East Cape - The southernmost point of the main island of Tasmania
Southern Cross - Defining constellation in Southern hemisphere
Spectra - Spectra™ : - a highly modified polyethylene fibre with many applications such as ropes and sails
Speight’s Distinction Ale - A Kiwi medication prescribed in Dunedin, NZ
Spreader Lights - Lights mounted half way up the mast which shine onto the foredeck to facilitate work at night below; good for the person doing the work but can ruin night vision in the cockpit, so only used when essential
StaLoks - A method of joining rigging wire to the stainless steel turnbuckles which then attach the rigging to the hull and can be used to tighten it as it stretches.
Stanchion - Upright support on the edge of the deck to carry lines or a safety rail
Storm jib - A very small jib, usually made from bright orange material, used in storm conditions.
Swannies - The Sydney Swans Football Club who won the Grand Final of the AFL on September 24th 2005
Sydney-Hobart - Sydney-Hobart Race: often described as the most gruelling ocean race in the world, this annual race starts on 26th December from Sydney Harbour and ends in Hobart. The course is 628 nautical miles.
Sydney-Rio race - A race from Sydney to Rio around Cape Horn. Sailed only once, in 1981. Alex was in Jacqui, one of the 4 boats that entered. They had to retire with broken steering gear in the Tasman Sea. See Tommy.
Tater Du - Cornwall's most recently built lighthouse (completed in 1965)
Taupo - A region in New Zealand but here referring to Taupo Radio, a NZ radio station for sailors with long range capability.
TCR - TasCoast Radio in Tasmania
Tell-tales - Ribbons tied to the shrouds to show the relative wind direction. See Magic. Photos here (Isabella Whitworth's website)
Telstra - The Telstra Corporation is an Australian Telecommunications Company dominant in the area of land lines, mobile phones and Broadband, amongst other services
tfn - ‘till further notice’
The Lizard - The most southerly point of the British mainland.
The Needles - A row of three distinctive stacks of chalk that rise out of the sea off the western extremity of the Isle of Wight, UK. The Needles lighthouse stands at the end of the formation.
The Solent - Strait separating the Isle of Wight from the mainland of England.
Titan Arum - Big plant that flowers once a decade and smells like rotting flesh. Amorphallus titanum (known as the Corpse Flower for its attractive smell), and relationship to seaboots.
Titan Uranus - Advice in times of maritime stress. Derived from the name of a ship known to Berrimilla.
Tommy - Melville, Tommy: Isabella asked Alex who Tommy was after seeing his name in the log. She received this (edited) answer:“Tommy was the owner of Jacqui, the boat I first set out in for Cape Horn in 1982. Great guy, rough as they come, magnificent seaman, not into bullshit of any sort and someone I really liked and trusted. He left the boat with me when we got back, so I had this lovely boat to play with for a few months as well. He died a few years ago and I didn't know, sadly, until recently. He owned a shipyard and tugboat in Brisbane. ... He'd have loved this.”
Tractor - The engine - as in “running the tractor”. The Kubota engine by Witchard Marine was described by Alex as being “made of tractor parts, not expensive marine parts”.
Trades - Bands of NW and SW winds either side of the equator that blow with more or less constant speed and direction all year.
Trindade - Trindade and Martim Vaz is an archipelago located about 1,200 kilometers (740 mi) east of Vitória in the Southern Atlantic Ocean, belonging to Brazil. More in Wikipedia
trisail - A tiny storm sail that is set on the mast instead of the mainsail. Full explanation here
Tristan da Cunha - A remote volcanic group of islands in the south Atlantic Ocean. It is the most remote inhabited archipelago in the world. Tristan da Cunha is part of the British overseas territory of Saint Helena, Ascension and Tristan da Cunha. More on wikipedia.
TRS - Tropical Revolving Storms
Turbine - Acquair turbine, consisting of a generator which hangs from the pushpit, 40 metres of line, and a towed 1-metre long metal impeller.
Turner - Turner, John Mallord William (1775 - 1851); one of the founders of English watercolour painting renowned for his studies of sea and sky in every weather
Twin Poling - An explanation from Malcolm: It is quite normal for a yacht to 'pole out' its jib (the foresail) on the opposite side of the boat to the mainsail when running downwind - this is called goosewinging'. A spinnaker pole is attached to the mast at one end and the back corner (clew) of the jib at the other. That holds the jib at the right angle so that it catches the wind. On Berri they've found that they can often get good performance and a comfortable ride by taking the mainsail right down and setting a second jib poled out on the opposite side to the first.
Tyhina - A boat that went through the NW Passage east to west at the same time as Berrimilla. We spoke to them often on the radio but never saw them. We passed in opposite directions on August 16th 2008 .
UTC time - Co-ordinated Univeral Time, formerly Greenwich Mean Time. UTC (sometimes known as Zulu time) uses precise atomic clocks, shortwave time signals and satellites to ensure it remains a totally reliable and accurate standard for scientific and navigational purposes.
vera brittain - WW 1 front line nurse who wrote Testament of Youth, a book about her early life and her wartime experience. One of Alex’s heroes.
VHF - Very High Frequency radio. Short range radio equipment for voice and other applications such as AIS.
Vikings Wool Sails - Reference to article in New Scientist
Virtual Passage Planner - A software package used by Malcolm R to produce website maps
VMC wxfax - The Australian Bureau of Meteorology HF Marine Radio Weather by Fax service. VMC is the callsign of the Charleville Base Station in Queensland. VMW is the callsign of Wiluna in WA. Charleville and Wiluna are the two Maritime Communications Stations in Australia. Berrimilla received weather faxes from VMC close to Cape Horn and from VMW clost to the Cape of Good Hope – both at a range of more than 6000 miles.
VMG - Velocity made good – loosely, speed in the right direction.
VoA - Not the Voice of America, but the Viscosity of Anusol. Sophisticated and innovative system of onboard temperature assessment. Full explanation here
Vogons - Extremely ugly, unpleasant and officious, the Vogons emerged from the seas of Vogsphere and became bureaucrats in the Galactic Government. They destroyed the earth to clear the way for a hyperspace bypass; see also HHGTTG
VTS - Vessel Tracking System
warehouses - Waves the size of warehouses
washboards - In this context, the two sturdy wooden half ‘doors’ that close the companionway entrance when things get pearshaped and we need to keep the greenies (qv) out of the cabin. Made specially by Pete.
Waypoint - A fixed location with specified latitude and longtitude co-ordinates maintained by GPS
Witchard - Witchard, John: Berri has one of his 22hp engines, much praised for its reliability. See also Tractor.
WM - Witchard Marine, Berrimilla's engine maker owned and run by John Witchard, a friend who sailed in Berri in a Hobart race.
Wollongong - The town which moves. There is a Berri-joke about having a beer off Wollongong on the return trip from Hobart - and how Wollongong seems to move further south each year.
Woohoo - a primitive, exultant, gibbon-like call given out by an old geezer; many variations as listed, in order of emphasis: Woohoo Woooohooo WOOOHOOO WOOOHOOO! WOOOOOOOOHOOOOOOOOO!
WWG - Wet weather gear. See Party gear
Wx - Short for ‘weather’
Xantic - A service provider for Easymail
Xantrex - xantrex battery monitor
Yachting Monthly - Magazine published in the UK
Yachting World - Magazine published in the UK
Yuri - Yuri's night, April 12th, is the anniversary of Yuri Gagarin's first space flight in 1961 and the first Shuttle flight in 1981. It is celebrated all over the world by people interested in or connected to the space industry.
Zarquon - The Hitch Hiker’s Guide to the Galaxy - the prophet who arrived too late to predict the end of the world.