taught them how to breed certain species. Gerry would often take and sell many fish that he had bred himself to Pet fare on Bedford Street.’
The money that he accrued would go to pay for the flaked food that they sold and blood worms. Gerry was always looking for ways to improve his aquarium and would experiment with different breeds. He tried breeding paco’s which were like piranhas.
He also bought some pearl danio’s which he raised and bred. Many would say that Gerry Burt was an authority on tropical fish and they’d be right.
Dougie got a phone call from Eddie saint who told him that the weather was no good in Iceland and the Faros to go out and it was set to last a few days. Dougie told him about his boat and that he would be going down to work on it as it was fine here.
Eddie said that he would ring him if the weather changed.’
Dougie took a bus to Ashington. He called into Rennison’s and picked up some quarter inch plate glass, some sealant, and putty then he walked back to the yard with it. He had measured the glass before he went and Albert Rennison cut them all to size for him.
He stuck each pane in with sealant first then allowed them to dry before finally laying on some putty and smoothing it off.’
Over the course of the next three days he used a blow torch to burn off several layers of paint from the hull then set about giving it two coats of undercoat before a final gloss. The Navy blue and white went well together and when he’d finished painting the outside he stood back and admired her.
She was beautiful. The deck was repainted blue and all the cabins scraped, sanded, painted, and finally varnished. Using bulkhead lighting Doug was able to work though the night. He slept on board instead of having to travel back and forth. He ate from the fish shop across the road and worked some sixteen hours at a time in order to get the boat ready. After the fifth day Paula turned up in the car. She had been ringing the house but Doug was not answering. She bought some new mugs, a kettle, and a new frying pan, plates, and some pans from Pallister’s that sold good second hand goods.
There was some cutlery on board. She also brought some food that she had made herself and they ate it in the galley.
“Doug you have done a splendid job on her; I bet you’re shattered.’
“It has been a labour of love Paula but she is nearly ready. All I need now is a crew.’
“I’m sure Eddie will help you out; he has good contacts.’
“I did mention it to him.’
“When are you going to float her?’
“She has a name now you know.’ come I will show you.’
He helped her down the ladder and he led her to the front of the boat on both sides where written in Gold lettering was the boats title “The Christian” there was a gold fish symbol next to it which also symbolised Christians.’
“I named her in Gods honour Paula; you said it was Gods will that I should own my own boat.’
“I like it, she will have to be christened you know.
“Could you ask Reverend Ralph Mason to do it?’
“I’m sure that he would be honoured Doug; she is beautiful.’
“Not as beautiful as you though.’
“I bet you say that to all the girls.’
“No only you Paula.’