I found this gentleman’s YouTube channel a few days ago and have been fascinated by his videos ever since. He’s been doing these videos for years, so there’s plenty to watch. Roger Barnes is a rural architect living, until recently, in Somerset in southwest England. He seems to have recently moved to a flat somewhere in Brittany, France. Whether this is a permanent move or a second home, I don’t know.
In these videos, he’s working on his wooden Ilur dinghy, the Avel Dro, during “lock-down” in early 2020 due to the pestilence, as Roger calls Covid-19. I found the details of his boat’s design and how he fitted her out to be fascinating. And the pine tar. Oh how I long for the smell of pine tar. I haven’t used it since I last tarred the base of my touring skis. Roger also goes on about the countryside, old things and simple things. There’s a bit of Thoreau in him. He talks of the need to pull together for each other in this time of pestilence rather than whining about the loss of his freedom to sail the Avel Dro wherever he pleases. I like the man. I like the sailor and I like his boat. I hope you find his videos as enjoyable and soothing as I have.
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