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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