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What is the connection between W-8 built by Berthon in 1925, Genesis and The Grateful Dead?

February 26, 2013

W-8February 2013 –
A Change of Name:

Berthon Boatyard owner Brian May has renamed the West Solent One Design W-8 that the Berthon apprentices are currently restoring as an educational project, from DINAH to RIPPLE.  Designed and built at the Lymington based shipyard by Brian’s great grandfather H G May in 1925, the boat was originally christened DINAH, and still bore that name when she arrived here in October 2012. When asked why the name change, MD Brian May responded:

“DINAH – whichever way you pronounce it – has a rather sombre tone to it, whether you use the ancient form akin to the American ‘diner’ made so popular in the fifties and sixties, or the harsher ‘deener’.

“In Genesis, Dinah was the daughter of Jacob. ‘Now Dinah … went out to see the women of the land. And when Shechem the son of Hamor the Hivite, the prince of the land, saw her, he seized her and lay with her and humiliated her. And his soul was drawn to Dinah the daughter of Jacob. He loved the young woman and spoke tenderly to her’. Clearly there was some question as to what took place and two of Jacob’s younger sons took it upon themselves to stir up trouble believing that Shechem had defiled Dinah.

“I think the new name I have chosen – RIPPLE – leads on from the boat’s first name, just as her initial namesake led to ripples many centuries ago. I simply cannot wait to have Ripple sailing again creating her own ripples in Solent waters and beyond as a tribute to both my ancestors’ and our modern day apprentices’ skills. She is every bit as beautiful as no doubt Dinah was and for those of you who are musically minded the following words were penned by Robert Hunter, long Jerry Garcia’s alter songwriting ego. Originally written in 1970 whilst Robert Hunter was in London, it was debuted in San Francisco in August that year not far from where I have seen the Grateful Dead a number of times. To me the words flow wonderfully and it should create a great anthem for the boat as she sails away from the dock anew”:

Ripple – The Grateful Dead

If my words did glow with the gold of sunshine
And my tunes were played on the harp unstrung,
Would you hear my voice come through the music,
Would you hold it near as it were your own?

It’s a hand-me-down, the thoughts are broken,
Perhaps they’re better left unsung.
I don’t know, don’t really care
Let there be songs to fill the air.

Ripple in still water,
When there is no pebble tossed,
Nor wind to blow.

Reach out your hand if your cup be empty,
If your cup is full may it be again,
Let it be known there is a fountain,
That was not made by the hands of men.

There is a road, no simple highway,
Between the dawn and the dark of night,
And if you go no one may follow,
That path is for your steps alone.

Ripple in still water,
When there is no pebble tossed,
Nor wind to blow.

You who choose to lead must follow
But if you fall you fall alone,
If you should stand then who’s to guide you?
If I knew the way I would take you home.

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