Skiff Club, the oldest skiffing club in the world (founded 1895). The club codified the sport, developing a standard design that is built in matched pairs or threes for fair racing.
The club has twenty boats, mostly built in the last 20 years but including a pair of doubles dating from the early days of the club. They have been recently restored by Stanley and Thomas in Windsor and are things of great beauty. The wood positively glows. And I got to row one of them, M.C. Lamb, on her very first outing since she got back from the yard. What a privilege.
It was a first for me too - racing skiffs do not have rowlocks or round thole pins but flat tholes with a string across to prevent the loom of the oar coming out.
This allows the rower to put the power on with confidence but it has the drawback that you can't easily bring the oar out in emergency. So the technique is to manoeuvre the boat with the blade sitting on top of the string and bring it under when you set off in earnest. It is a bit of a faff for the first time, involving taking the handle outside the tholes, taking care not to let go, bringing the handle in and twisting the blade to corkscrew the button under the string. You get the hang of it eventually.
Fran and Dave took me up to the Ye Olde Swanne pubbe in Thames Ditton, a three mile row mainly with the home park of Hampton Court Palace on the north bank. Then we came back. The sun shone. It was fantastic.