If there is indeed no rest for the wicked, I must have been a very wicked boy indeed. This is promising to be the busiest, excitingest, craziest couple of days I’ve seen in a long time!
For kick-off, tomorrow (Saturday) sees the start of the Maritime Festival here in Titanic Quarter.
Over the last few days, tall ships, pirate ships, navy ships and just lots of ships in general have been arriving all along the River Lagan and beside the Odyssey. The festival is three days (Sat/Sun/Mon) of live music, street performers, shows, stands, spectacular stuff and (oh yes) ships – don’t miss it!
And of course in the middle of it all, your favourite Honesty Box cafe will be going gangbusters. Call in to say Hi to Clemence and the fantastic team of volunteers who will be pouring even more cuppas than usual! And breaking the habit of a lifetime, the cafe is open on Sunday as well – 11-5 each day of the festival.
And just along the road, Dock Market will also be in full swing each day of the festival – bunged full of local creatives, goodies, food, craft, unique handmade gorgeousness and that special Dock Market vibe.
And of course the Wee Tram will be running through it all – and for this weekend only, it is FREE! Just hop on at any of the stops (Premier Inn / Dock Cafe / SS Nomadic / Titanic Belfast / Slipways / Dock & Pump House) and then hop off at any of the others, to your heart’s content, all day long!
And just in case you think that at close of business on Monday I’ll be taking it easy and enjoying a nice long break – not a bit of it! Because next week it gets even excitinger!
Tuesday is the long awaited deadline: 31st May 2016, exactly 100 years since HMS Caroline fought in the Battle of Jutland in World War One. Caroline is now the only ship remaining of the fleets that fought that day, and it’s been amazing to watch the restoration suddenly ramp up a gear as we’ve been tootling past on the Wee Tram over the last couple of weeks. A fresh coat of paint – the funnels and crow’s nest emerging from the tarps and scaffolding – even replica guns set up on the deck!
As I was heading past tonight, she finally looked as ready as I’ve ever seen her – a beautiful ship and a truly amazing sight:
After the Jutland commemorations on Tuesday, as of Wednesday (1st June) she will be open to the public – another fantastic reason to visit Titanic Quarter, another facet of this constantly-changing, fascinating, unique place.
Not too shabby, eh!