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Renaming David

Renaming David

Boaters are, generally, a superstitious lot. From the "no bananas" rule to the Ancient Mariner's albatross to stepping onboard with your right foot, a lot of rules exist to avoid pissing off the gods. Many new sailors scoff at traditions, but those who have been around the pond a few times take certain superstitions very seriously, especially when it comes to renaming a boat. Each sailor has at least one story about an incident when someone they know didn't rename a boat properly, and the vessel was either struck by lightning, capsized or had an electrical fire. So, it's best to be on the safe side and go through the proper rituals to ensure that your newly named boat will not burst into flames.
Before starting the ceremony, according to BoatSafe.com, it's necessary to remove all occurrences of the former name from the boat itself. This includes erasing or whiting out log books or ship's records where the old name appears. Also, don't tempt fate by allowing anything onto the boat with the new name on it until the renaming ceremony is over.
Once that is over, bring at least two bottles of good champagne, and start the ritual. We witnessed the recent renaming of a salvaged Squib at the BVI Watersports Centre. It was being renamed from David, after Hurricane David, to Grace.

Here's how a traditional rechristening ceremony proceeds:
1. Invoke Neptune
2. Ask for the former name to be stricken from the Eternal Record
3. Drop something bearing the old name into the sea
4. Pour an offering of fine champagne into the sea
5. Introduce new name
6. Make an offering to the four wind gods and pour some champagne over the boat for good measure

If you have any champagne left, toast each other for taking the time to perform this necessary ritual.


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