Following on from this weekend when we tied up to a mooring buoy ( or did we ? ) and a few other similar incidents I hope no-one minds if I suggest that everyone who go out in the Gigs ought to be able to tie at least one proper, recognised knot.
A recognised knot is one that will do its job, will hold, and one which can later be undone fast, easily, and not neccessaily by the person who first tied it - perhaps in the dark by touch. Someone else can come to the knot, they recognose what it is, and so they know how to undo it.
The people going to the Scillies in particular all need to be able to tie a fender, perhaps to fasten to bouy, or a ring on the quayside, maybe take a tow rope and fix it to the boat, the list in endless.
An emergency situation is not the time to be learning knots, or to be wondering where the rabbit goes when it pops up out of the hole - see later on.
The person in No1 position (bowmann) in particular could do with being able to tie a decent knot, as generally that's where the bouy, towrope, tug, or quayside is going to be - at the bow of the Gig.
Rather than learn loads of different knots ( and there are hundreds) for every conceivable occasion, there is one which can be used in almost any application - the BOWLINE.
Primarily designed - wait for it - to make a bow ( loop ) in a line (rope )...the loop goes round/through the ring etc, it can even be used to join two ropes together, by using two knots...so you only have to learn one knot for the moment - concentrate on the bowline rather than a reef knot or something else and you have a skill for life.
Its impossible to describe in words how to do it, and there is also a very handy trick method that once you have learnt you will never forget. Yes the rabbit does come out of the hole and go round the tree, but the trick method forces your hand literally.
If anyone would like me to teach them how to do it, trick or otherwise, please feel free to ask, and please provide yourself with a piece of resonable quality rope, ( not string ) about 3 feet long and 1/4 inch or 6mm diameter, for me to teach you with and you to practise on.
Here is an animation of how to do it, but until someone has shown you what to do, even this isn't much good, there are other animations that might suit you better - try searching.