All At Sea: Rumpus Party Onboard MS Stubnitz

6 Mar , 2013  

A sea creature at Rumpus on MS Stubnitz

So, my beauties, there we were, on the deck of the MS Stubnitz, late of Hamburg, now come to Canary Wharf, the icy air seeking out our exposed flesh, surrounded by all manner of weird creatures, some with the smell of seamen about them, but many from Worlds strange and unfathomable. We found ourselves in the midst of a great rumpus of noise and commotion, at once assailed and bewildered by the desperate voyage now embarked.

3 mermaids at Rumpus party aboard MS Stubnitz

Gentle reader, we saw three genuine mermaids, sirens of legend and lore, their tails flecked with the colours of the deep, their heads and breasts home to corals and anemones of every kind. They sang too, in slight Estuary tones, but passable nonetheless for they must have rehearsed it under water.

Sea creatures at Rumpus party on MS Stubnitz

Upon that deck was every ocean’s denizen, persons in ponderous diving contraptions bedecked with tubes, lobsters grown the size of pit-ponies and tangled with kelpy cloaks, giant crabs nipping at our extremities, a crazy accordionist who lashed about with his instrument, and jeweled ladies aplenty. A poor lad begged me for tobacco saying his nose was broke from a sea-vixen that fell down upon him from the sky, for she was somewhat loose in the stays. We took fright, running from the groping octopi, and many winsome lasses sporting basques and fishnets. A few lads in fishnets also.

Girl at Rumpus party on MS Stubnitz

Below decks the lone bar stood three-deep with writhing wenches, deep-sea divers and privateers, all of them fighting tooth-and-claw for a mouthful of grog. “An extra pound deposit for yer diminutive plastic pint pot,” says the barman. “A foul trick!” says I, “None would be arsed to brave this bedlam to return’t.” And so they had my pound, may it burn a hole in their poxy purses before it’s spent.

Sarb at Rumpus party on MS Stubnitz

From down in the bilges came wild music played with murderous intent by two bands of troubadours – one named Penny Black Remedy, the other BootScraper – and had me a merry jig while Master Sarb parleyed a damsel whose eye was well twinkled by his ‘End Is Nigh’ sandwich board, tho’ it came to naught, there being a ring upon her finger.

Disco at Rumpus party on MS Stubnitz

And thus, as the party thinned, we journeyed for’ard to boogie in the dark for awhile til the 11 o’clock curfew fell upon us; whence above board and contemplating the gangplank, we watched the wretched sloop’s crew set to sluicing the soiled decks and arouse those fallen to the scuppers with the staggers and jags.

Captain Santi’s Rumpus party Vol 14 ‘20,000 Creatures Under The Sea!’ was held aboard MS Stubnitz, Wood Wharf, London E14 9SB on Sat 2nd March 2013.

MS Stubnitz moored at Wood Wharf, London

It featured a Rubbish Sideshow circus, the noisy musics of Penny Black Remedy and BootScraper, hardtack by What The Dickens, harpist Steph West, and an accordionist whose name escapes me. Spinning the yarns were DJs Ocelus, Dr Cat, Toby Lyon and Dr Malaka.

Words and photos: © Ken Sparkes. All Rights Reserved.


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