Fun with Flags

Posted on November 17, 2013 by Jack Kelly
Tags: windeward_bound

Windeward Bound still carries a full set of signalling flags and while they do see some use, we don’t send often complicated messages with them because we have things like VHF radio. But when the tall ship festivals were on, we thought there might be other sailors out there who’d be able to read the flags. Since we didn’t need to send serious messages with them, we wound up sending joke messages in the traditional manner: bible references.

Genesis 1:28

This first one was flown during the sailing day in Melbourne. GEN1.28: Genesis 1:28.

And God blessed them, and God said unto them, Be fruitful, and multiply, and replenish the earth, and subdue it: and have dominion over the fish of the sea, and over the fowl of the air, and over every living thing that moveth upon the earth.

Mainly leaning on the “be fruitful and multiply” bit, this was an obtuse way to say “let’s have more of this sort of thing”. Let’s multiply the ships and their crews.

Psalms 55:22

PS5522: Psalms 55:22.

Cast thy burden upon the Lord, and he shall sustain thee: he shall never suffer the righteous to be moved.

We flew this after being forced to move to another wharf to take on fuel.

Luke 9:5

LUKE9.5: Luke 9:5.

And whosoever will not receive you, when ye go out of that city, shake off the very dust from your feet for a testimony against them.

Flown on the day we left Melbourne, after being well-received. We didn’t get any remarks on the flags, so when we were down in Port Davey, we tried something less subtle:

Our Cargo is Livestock

SU5. Straight from the International Code of Signals, this one reads “our cargo is livestock”. When we had a ship full of passengers.


This guy was seen as we sailed into Sydney Harbour for the International Fleet Review. He’s not flying a bible reference or a hoist from the International Code of Signals. The hoist reads Golf-Delta-Alpha-Yankee, or GDAY. It made my day.

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