Hi I am Jo…wife, lover, best friend and soulmate to Keith. Lover of all things to do with nature and the canals. I am passionate about the Waterways and its history.
I hope you will join me in my rambles and do please comment – I love to hear from and meet new people in blogland!
Wednesday, 30 March 2011
Tuesday, 29 March 2011
Monday, 28 March 2011
Sunday, 27 March 2011
Saturday, 26 March 2011
We heard yesterday by email that Hadar has her BSS exemption for not having a silencer fitted to her engine. We just have to wait for the letter to arrive by post. We appreciate very much the hard work that Philip Rickett did for us on our behalf representing us at the BSS technical committee. It is a huge relief for us and our customers that we will be trading again this Winter.
A first happened last night. We were in bed at 8.30pm ;0) and no hanky panky was had, because both of us were way to tired after spending over twelve hours painting. The only other time you would find me in bed that early is if I am poorly. I wish I could say I actually slept all night, but unfortunately at midnight I was up feeling a little unwell. I am not sure if it was the dreaded Menopause playing her games or the fumes from the paint on the engine room floor, which I had painted earlier in the day, but something had got to me and it made me feel a little strange.
Oi I heard that, I know I am already strange, but lets say the fumes made me feel stranger than normal.
I got up and sat in the saloon with a glass of water until the strange feeling went off, then I crept back to bed, but Keith was awake worried about me awww.
Having tossed and turned for the rest of the night, I was awake just before 6am feeling very jaded and not looking forward to getting out of bed. But just after 7am we were up. I opened the galley door to see a very misty, cold morning, which was not what I had ordered for the day. I ordered another bright sunny start to the day, so we could get on with the huge painting task. So the boat is all masked up, but as the clock ticked around to 8.30am no rubbing down or painting had been started, because there was little point whilst if was still so misty, instead I ate breakfast and then took Paddy for a run across the field. The Skylarks were singing a merry tune as was the Robin perched in a tree near the boat. Back on board I cleaned out the back cabin fire and got it going because the cabin was a bit on the chilly side. Whilst it kicked into life, I filled the Copper kettle with water, this would sit on the stove all day boiling ready for cup's of coffee's when needed. Both Keith and I looked out of the galley doors and decided that painting was out of the question because it was still to misty and cold, so I got on with sorting the empty hold out. When I say empty, I only have around Twenty bags of coal left, there is of course other stuff in the hold, and it all needed tidying. Keith and I had taken the anchor, chain and rope out of the front locker, so I stashed that away against the front bulkhead, it now sits in front of the coal hidden away. I stacked the last of the coal and swept the floor. Whilst I did that, Keith got his axe out and chopped the logs we have been carrying, once chopped up they were put into old coal bags. With the hold tidy and the logs stacked away, I made us both a coffee before tackling the next job, which is one I am not that keen on but it has to be done. This glamorous job is cleaning out the bilges. I started on the galley one, which filled two buckets. Keith removed the floor in the engine room to get to the bilge under the engine, this was partly full of oily water and Paddy's hair. His hair gets everywhere. Finally we did the bilge under the back cabin floor, which was very unpleasant, because the water was mixed with the grease from the propshaft, so it was a slimy mess. Keith managed to wire up a pump to remove most of the water, and the grease we will tackle when it dries out a bit more. I plan to put cat litter on the floor to soak the grease up, then we can just shovel it out.
Who say's boating is glamorous??
With these jobs done the time had rolled on to 1.30pm and my stomach was grumbling. Clearly we had gone past lunchtime, so with everything put back the way it should be, I made us some lunch and we sat down to watch the Australian F1 qualifying. It is still misty and cold outside, so there will definitely be no painting today, we can but hope tomorrow is better.
Chat soon xx
Friday, 25 March 2011
We had the most beautiful sunset last night, which could be seen from our galley window.
I went to bed at 9.30pm and left Keith watching a Clint Eastwood movie. I was dead to the world when he eventually came to bed.
We awoke to a bright sunny morning once again, so I made us a cuppa, which we drank in bed and discussed the plans for the day. The main plan was to start the blue repaint on the boat.
Having got up, taken Paddy for his walk, I started the paintwork off by finishing off the blacking in the front locker, this took me all of 10 minutes. I then rubbed down the engine room hatches, edging around the front locker lid, front deck cross beam and cross beam across the cabin top. I then started painting on the new blue and immediately I saw a huge difference. Whilst I was doing this Keith was filling the top of the back cabin doors, so that they could be undercoated. He then got on with his water cans. 10am came and it was time for a well earned coffee, so we got the chairs out for the first time this year and sat and enjoyed our coffee in the glorious sunshine. Across the field a Tawney Owl began hooting, which was a little strange for 10am in the morning. The Skylarks then joined in with their song and before we knew it, there was bird song all around us and no other sound could be heard. I am so pleased we stopped here. Break over with it eas back to the paint pit until lunch time, when I made us some Cheese and Tomato rolls, which again were deserved and much needed. As we sat down to lunch we could hear a Peacock from a local farm, it as certainly a day for the birds. After lunch I emptied the engine room and rubbed the floor down, I then painted that with Red Oxide, so that it is protected when wet. This meant Paddy had to stay in the boat. Marmite however was let out of the galley window on her lead, she enjoyed the afternoon sunshine and the birds on the feeders. We have had a very busy day which did not end until 4pm when we called it a day.
Thursday, 24 March 2011
Wednesday, 23 March 2011
Having made our last coal delivery of the season to Market Harborough yesterday, we said our goodbye's to some of our regular customers until October.
Yesterday ended up with us both being in bed by 9.30pm, we were both too cream crackered to sit up any longer. I was thankful that I kept the back cabin stove in overnight, because when we woke up at 5.30am it was a tad chilly. I racked out the fire and got it roaring away, whilst I made us both a cuppa. There was little to discuss about what the day would bring, because we only had one coal drop off.
Before leaving Market Harborough we winded in the basin, stopped on the sanitary station to get rid of rubbish and to top the tank up with water. Whilst the the tank was filling we had a natter with Malcolm who helps with the hire fleet. It has been an early and busy start for them with most of their boats already out. I hope this bodes well for the company this year, after there were some cancellantion due to being frozen in. Water tank filled, we set off for Foxton Village. The sun was shining, it felt like a summer's morning. It was so warm I was in my t-shirt and of course my trousers, shorts would have been going a little far, they are still in the box. We have noticed increased traffic this past week or so and today was no different. It seems we always meet up with boats at bridge holes and today was no exception. The crew on the other boat very kindly allowed us through even though it was 50/50. As we passed by I thanked them and we passed the time of day. If only all boaters were this gracious at bridge holes towards working boats ;0). By the time we reached the Foxton Village swingbridge, there was one boat moored on the bridge bollards, it looked loike he was single handed and waiting for some help, that help came in the shape of a gentleman on the boat behind us, who very kindly opened the swingbridge for us all. My heart was however in my mouth when his Springer Spaniel who was not on a lead, jumped from the moving swingbridge on to the bank. It then did an about turn to jump back, but we were already half way through the gap. If it had tried to jump back it would have missed, which would have ment it would have been in the water as we came through the gap. I dread to think what could have happened. I thank the gentleman for his help and he went on his way.
We are now moored up at Black Horse Bridge waiting for a Tesco food delivery. Before lunch I delivered a couple of bags of coal to a regular customer, on my return to the boat I then made us both a Sausage sandwich with the remaining Sausages from yesterdays purchase at the market.
I am not sure what this afternoon will bring, but at the moment I am enjoying a coffee whilst listening to our local radio station. Have a lovely day.
Chat soon xx
HFM (CLICK) is the best local radio station in the country. Everyone there makes us feel like we are part of the family. They now have to raise half of their own funding to survive due to government funding cuts. We all know that the cuts have to take place if this country is ever to get back into the black, but to lose the local radio station would be a step to far, so we are hoping they manage to find the funding. If you have a local radio station, they are probably going through the same funding cuts, so if you do not want to lose them, then support them.
Tuesday, 22 March 2011
Another morning began with us drinking tea in bed, this time a little more snuggled beneath the duvet as it was a little chilly. I had let both fires out yesterday because it was to warm in the boat. As we sat in bed discussing the days plans, we could hear people walking and jogging past the boat. Anyone that jogs must need their head read (just my opinion). I cannot think of anything worse to do as far as exercise is concerned.
Have you ever seen a happy jogger?
7.30 am I was up and dressed, with thoughts of lighting the back cabin stove, so bring a little warmth into the cabin. I also wanted to cook today's dinner on it, so once Keith was up, dressed and the he had folded the bed away, I cleaned out the fire and relit it with some housecoal to begin with, then I threw on some Excel for good measure, that will soon have the boat warm again. The weather at the moment is so hit and miss, still on the 27th March it is the beginning of British Summer Time, so fingers crossed we will be in for some good weather. Here am I living in hope ;0).
Fire was going a good one, so Paddy was next on my list, he was ready and waiting for his walk. Along the towpath at Market Harborough he does not get a chance to run off of the lead, because there are usually a lot of other dogs and their walkers about and I prefer to keep him under control when there are other dogs around. I wish others were as considerate.
With all the usual jobs done, I left Keith on the boat and headed off down the town. Keith had a dental appointment at 10.10am, so there was no point him coming fruit and veg shopping with me. In my head I had a list of things I wanted to do whilst in town. Firstly I went to the bank, then to the sewing shop to find a 26"/27" zip for my waistcoat. For some odd reason the teeth have started falling out of the zip, so I needed a new zip to replace the old. Unfortunately they only had a 22" zip and it was dark Brown, this would have to do, because I could not wait around for them to order me one. I am sure no one will notice once I have fitted it. I then made my way to the indoor market for some Sausages. Three packs of their homemade Sausages for £4.50 a real bargain, some of these would end up in rolls for lunch, with of course Onion and Tomato Sauce. As I was well ahead of myself, I decided to scour the charity shops in the hunt for a wool blanket. I did not find a wool blanket but did find the next best thing, a piece of wool material which will do the job. I will tell you what I want it for in a later post, hopefully with photographs. Outside the indoor market they have a chap selling fruit and veg for £1 a bowl, so I bought two veg bowls and one fruit, this will keep us going for a couple of weeks. With my list of purchases all done and dusted I then lugged my rucksack back up the hill to the boat, where I found the boat all locked up, which meant Keith had gone to the doctors.
No sooner I was on board and the kettle on, my phone rang and a customer asked if he could come and get some coal straight away, so I put the kettle on the stove and went and unloaded some coal for my customer waiting for me in the car park. I wheeled the coal around the basin on my sack barrow to a waiting car, where Rob loaded the coal into his boot. Another very satisfied customer. I only had one other customer to supply later in the afternoon and that is Market Harborough done. This is our last coal delivery to Market Harborough until October.
Four of the Sausages I bought from the market, were placed in the back stove oven with Onions to roast ready for lunch. Keith eventually arrived back at the boat having been to the dentist, he goes back again in two weeks to have his crown fitted. Lunch was cooked so I made us both a couple of Hotdogs and a Coffee, which went down a treat.
After lunch it was time for me to get on with painting the other side of the forward bulkhead. Keith removed the navigation light, I rubbed it all down and started to paint on the Red Oxide paint, whilst I got on with the painting, Keith set off to buy a gas bottle from Brandon's hire company, where we can get a 13kg bottle of gas for £20, the cheapest in the area. By the time Keith got back, the first coat of Red Oxide was all done and was drying nicely in the sunshine. I managed to get a second coat on later in the afternoon.
Today has been a wonderful day for getting lots of things done. Dinner tonight is a Mince Beef Curry, which is cooking in the back cabin stove. After dinner I may sit down and take the zip out of my waistcoat, but that is only if I can keep my eyes open. I am feeling a little worn out now after such a busy old day.
Paddy is snoozing in the back cabin having had his tea and Marmite is perched on a shelf in the galley.
I am now off to check dinner so chat soon xx.
Monday, 21 March 2011
I am feeling everso slightly cream crackered after having a rotten nights sleep, all due to the Menopause. If your a man and your reading this, you do not know how lucky you are. I am going to be so glad when it finally ends.
So having had a rotten nights sleep, we were awake early so I made a cuppa and we sat in bed discussing what the day was going to bring. We both had shopping lists for Market Harborough and had also agreed that we would have lunch at the Angel Hotel. With there being no chance of me going back to sleep, I got up and laid up breakfast. Paddy then got his walk. On returning to the boat, I relit the back cabin stove, which I let out last night, because it was rather warm in the cabin. I love to have the Copper Kettle on the stove ready for Coffee, so whilst the weather is still a little uncertain I will light the back cabin stove in the mornings.
Summer seems to have arrived early as it is definitely warming up nicely, by 8.30am we were ready for the off, we had a warm sunny trip to Union Wharf, Market Harborough behind a hire boat from the basin. We caught up with the hire boat at the Foxton Village swing bridge and I was not amused when despite seeing us coming, they closed the bridge on us. As I ran towards the bridge to ask him to leave it open, I noticed school children crossing with their parents, so I think he may have closed it to let them over, so I gave him the benefit of doubt on this occasion. We carried on behind them all the way to Bridge 14, Union Canal Society Moorings, where we pulled in so I could get off to walk to Logan Street Wharf to see if there were any moorings, we could of got in there, so I rang Keith and let it ring three times, before walking onwards towards the basin to see if there were any moorings on the towpath. Hey presto we were in luck. because Keith did not find we waiting at Logan Street Wharf he carried on towards the basin to meet up with me. We moored up in front of Jim and Jenny on NB Jolly Roger. Having sorted everything out on the boat, we walked into Market Harborough where we had our last lunch on our Christmas voucher at the Angel Hotel, which was very scrummy as always. We then popped into Hfm studios (CLICK) to pick up our tickets for the battle of the DJ's on the 15th April and I got to have a look around the new studios, which are fantastic. Moley showed me around and I got to go into the studio as Dave Smith was broadcasting. Everyone at the station are wonderful and we love them dearly. We also collected out post and found that we had received our Census form in the post, which is amazing as we are not on the electoral roll, and even amazed the girl at the Council Offices as we popped in to register for the electoral roll. I wonder how they found us? lol.
It really has been a busy old day and I am cream crackered after we delivered coal to all our remaining customers in Market Harborough, this will be our last delivery of coal to the basin. Jill and Don on NB Idunno very kindly gave us both a glass of Merlot, which went down very well. I hope you cannot be had up for being drunk in charge of a sack barrow LOL. I only had half a glass honest ;0). The hold is looking very empty now and is getting difficult to climb out of, I am stretching muscles that have never been stretched before ;0). As we got back to the boat Alan and Frances on NB Lazy Days came past, winded in the basin and came back and found a mooring, I did catch a quick chat with them as I delivered coal to a customer, and with any luck we will chat further tomorrow. Dinner tonight will be sandwiches and I have a feeling bed will be calling me very early this evening. I am off now to see what I can find in the fridge.
Chat soon xx.
Sunday, 20 March 2011
Friday, 18 March 2011
We had a fairly uneventful trip down through the locks this morning. We left the mooring at 8.15 am expecting to be the first to use the flight, but we were mistaken. We had the new lock keeper Glyn on today, he was getting to know the ins and outs, so Keith was happy to give him a helping hand. We had to wait for 2 boats to come up before setting off down the flight, and had to pass a third at the midpoint. Whilst coming down the flight I got chatting to Chris and his wife off of NB Meanders, who have a Winter mooring in Yelvertoft Marina. They are a lovely couple who we first met when they came down to Market Harborough and moored in the basin for a couple of days. Chris very kindly helped with the gates as we descended the flight. We are now moored up at our favourite spot at the junction opposite Foxton Locks Inn and Bridge 61. We will be here for the weekend.
I have taken avantage of using Tony Matts washing machine, which is an industrial machine, I managed to do all the bedding including the mattress covers. Having got it all washed I then paid to use the tumble drier, in all it cost me £7.10, which is not bad at all, because it was a large load and it saved our little machine on the boat. Tomorrow I want to wash all of the crocheted blankets and towels ready for the Summer.
As I type this Paddy is collapsed on the floor by my feet, Marmite is asleep in the back cabin and Keith is standing on the back counter nattering to a passer-by. The sun is shining and we are looking forward to a lovely weekend.
It is Red Nose Day (CLICK) today and we will be watching the fun on BBC1 later no doubt. Have you done something funny for Money?????
Cuat soon xxx
Thursday, 17 March 2011
I guess you realise by now from my photographs, I am a bird lover. Yesterday I was out with my camera and tripod to see what was about. When we moored up I put the bird feeders out and in no time at all, I had little visitors. The first to arrive were the Blue Tits (Cyanistes caeruleus), they always seem to be the first to check out the food source, then if they think it is safe, other birds will come and join in. You will always find them on peanut feeders and are easily encouraged to come in to your garden. The second tit to arrive was the Great Tit (Parus major). Another pretty little bird, who tends to be a little bit bossy when it comes to whose first on the feeders. The Great Tit is the largest of the tit family, hence their name. In winter it joins with blue tits and others to form roaming flocks which scour gardens and countryside in search of food. All the tits were very welcome on my feeders, I did spot a Chaffinch and a Brambling, but could not get a photograph of either of them, so will have to try again when they are around.
Of the Tit family the Long Tailed Tit (Aegithalos caudatus)is my favourite. It is such an agile and active little bird, usally found in hedgerows and woodland. It tends to stay in flocks as there is safety in numbers.
We have had another foggy day, but still a pleasant run to Foxton top lock. We passed Jackie and Ray on RoeHaise heading off to the River Nene, although we may see them at Crick on our return trip. Yet again there was very little moving, either people are not setting off yet, or people could not be bothered to move due to the fog. I really do not care what the weather is like, it does not stop us moving, unless of course we are frozen in and then no one is going anywhere. Since arriving at Foxton, I have restacked the coal in the hold as far forward as it will go because we only have just over 1 tonne left and the bow needs to be kept down otherwise we may not clear a couple of bridges heading into Market Harborough next week. We are coming to the end of our Winter coal run and I am getting quite excited about our Summer cruising plans. Not that we ever make any firm plans now, because we did that last Summer and it was chaos with Keith being so poorly, so none of the plans were fulfilled. The hope is to travel north so watch this space. The hold is all sorted and tidy now and I am very happy with it looks now. Lunch has been eaten and tonight's dinner is cooking in the back cabin oven. Tonight we are having Honey and Mustard Chicken with New Potatoes and Veggies mmmmmmmmm.
Chat soon xxx
Wednesday, 16 March 2011
Tuesday, 15 March 2011
Monday, 14 March 2011
Having enjoyed a nice weekend at Crick, we had a superb spring morning's run today. The flowers are starting to appear, along with blossom and leaves on the trees. The birds were singing and we were both in fine fetal. We waved goodbye to John on NB Acen and Richard on Digitalis as we left Crick. Having winded at Watford Locks we then returned through Crick tunnel. Despite the lovely morning, there was very little boat movement, so I had a lovely time at the tiller. I do enjoy testing myself whilst in charge of the tiller and that usually happens when I have to negotiate moored boats in odd places or sharp bends. Thankfully today there was nothing to taxing to get around and I managed not to meet a boat in a bridge 'ole, so handling the boat was an absolute joy. We are moored at Downton Bridge 36 and it is a lovely afternoon. Marmite is enjoying being able to roll about on the towpath and Paddy is lead on the back counter. I took advantage of the lovely sunshine by talking my tripod and camera out to see what I could snap. There were very few birds about, so I had to turn my camera on to something else.
Whilst out I spotted Muntjac footprints in dried mud. It is amazing what you can see when you look down at the ground. I also looked up and spotted these Four areoplanes crossing the sky. I wonder if they were actually going to the same destination?? Any ideas folks as to what this bird is?
Saturday, 12 March 2011
It's a beautiful Saturday Afternoon. The sun is shining and the birds are singing. I wish my day had begun so well though.
4.30 am there I was drinking a cuppa in bed, because we were awake. With there being no way I was getting up at such a stupid hour on a Saturday, we both settled back down to get at least another couple of hours kip. I was actually woken up at 8 am by a knocking on the side of the boat. Paddy barked and Keith jumped out of bed, stuck his head out of the back cabin doors and said we are closed. The man on the towpath apologised that he had not seen our large Closed sign on the roof arghhhhhhh. With us now both being wide awake, there was little point in us going back to sleep. Not only that Paddy was asking to go out anyway.
Paddy and I stepped off of the boat to head up the towpath, which was drying out nicely thankfully, because the towpath at Crick can be a muddy mess when wet. As we got to the end of the moorings, a woman and her Newfoundland dog were approaching us. What followed was hysterical and you really had to be there to see it to understand. The woman was struggling to keep the dog under control as it excitedly marched towards us, so she tried in vain to pull her rather large dog into the hedge. When Paddy and I got closer, she was actually trying to tie it to a tree, because it was pulling her arms off. I asked her if her dog was friendly, which she replied yes. So I said to her " Mine is too, so why not let them say hello to each other, that way you will not get your arms pulled out of their sockets". She was night relieved and Paddy and her beautiful dog got on like a house on fire. I had visions of this woman being dragged through the hedge and down the towpath.
Why do people have such large dogs if they cannot control them?
The dog was lovely and very friendly, but the woman was clearly struggling.
Paddy and I continued on our walk in the sunshine before heading back to the boat.
Last night I did a wash in the washing machine and the damn thing would not spin the wash properly, so this morning I emptied the filter and put another small wash on to see if it made a difference. Unfortunately this failed to work, so it looks like we have a washing machine on the blink. Which is just what we could do without. I took the filter out again and it had black gritty stuff in it, just like compacted coal dust, so it is not looking great. We now have to find a repair man, another expense.
Yesterday I ordered a loaf of bread from the shop, so I left Keith on the boat and headed up the towpath to the road, just as I go there I then realised I had left my wallet on the boat arghhhh, so I trudged back to the boat to collect said wallet. I did managed to get my loaf of bread and some other bits from the shop, but was rather hot and sweaty by the time I got back to the boat. At this rate I am going to become a stick insect, with the weight I am losing.
Richard off of NB Digitalis came and requested some coal, which I then delivered to his boat whilst he walked Rio up the towpath.
Tonight's dinner is now cooking in the back stove, I have shaken the back cabin rag rugs and swept the floor, wiped down surfaces and made Coffee. It is now lunchtime and I am wondering what to do this afternoon, which will not involve something else breaking down?
Thankfully Keith's new laptop seems to be performing well, so that is one blessing. Right I am off to make us some lunch.
I do realise that me moaning about the washing machine is actually a small thing, when I think of what the people in Japan are going through, I realise how lucky I am.
Chat soon xx.
Friday, 11 March 2011
I was in bed by 9.30 pm last night, with a view to getting up at the crack of dawn. I set my alarm on my mobile phone and on the battery alarm clock, I wanted to make sure I was woken up. I need not have worried because Keith and I were awake at 4 am arghhhhhhh. Keith started coughing so had to get up, which meant not only were we awake so was Marmite and Paddy. We did settle back down under the duvet until the alarms went off. I was then up, bed folded away and Porridge on the go. After breakfast I made up the stoves and then took Paddy out for a walk down the locks. It was lovely to watch the sun coming up over the canal.
By 6.25 am we were ready for the off. We crept past the moored boats, destination Crick.
There is something very majestic about being up at the crack of dawn. I really felt quite honoured to be able to listen to the dawn chorus as it started off and built into an orchestra of bird song. If you have never heard the dawn chorus I completely recommend it. If nothing else it will put a smile on your face. I love travelling early in the morning. Normally if we move early we stop early, but we wanted to get to Crick for around lunchtime, a lot depended on if we had to stop to unload coal though.With us being up so early, the Porridge did not sustain us for very long, so I made us some Bacon rolls, which certainly hit the spot. I think the smell of the Bacon cooking made Keith even hungrier, because he was standing above the stove. They most certainly went down a treat with a cup of Coffee to wash them down.We have a lone Heron on our coal run and I have named it Hector. I am of course presuming it is a male ;0). Hector has taken up residence on the summit and at the moment does not have a love interest, so if there is a female Heron out there looking for love the Leicester Line Summit is the place to be. Of course if Hector should turn out to be female only males need apply.
I got to take the tiller for a while, which is boosting my confidence no end. Keith got me to do an emergency stop, which I managed pretty well. It is all about using the wheels in the right order, I will need to practice it a few times to get it completely right, but was chuffed with my effort, as I managed to keep the boat in the middle of the canal. One of the other joys about moving so early in the morning, is the fact that there are no other boats on the move. We did not encounter another boat until 10 o'clockish.
Thursday, 10 March 2011
We had a late start to our cruising day because having placed an online order for a new laptop on Tuesday Keith was waiting for it to arrive. According to the delivery company it was due to arrive today, which it did at about 11:30 this morning, so Keith caught the bus Foxton bus into Market Harborough to pick it up, leaving me home alone, to tidy the boat and cook tonights dinner which is Meatballs and play on the computer for five minutes. Upon returning we decided that we would move, we had time to deliver some coal to a customer and get up through the locks before they were shut for the day. Coming up behind us was NB Lady Gwendoline, who are off to Crick as their boat is for sale. The wind was blowing an absolute gale moving up the flight, which kept blowing the lock gates open. Having moored up I walked back down the flight to help NB Lady Gwendoline up the last few locks, but found they had family assisting them. But it give me a chance to have a natter as we walked back up the flight.
Keith is now playing with his new computer now :-)) and I have my fingers crossed that this one does not play up like the last one. If that happens I am going to throw the flippen thing in the canal.
Right time for me to go and stir the balls, so that they do not stick. Have a lovely morning, afternoon or evening.
Chat soon. xx
For those of you reading this from abroad you will probably not have a clue what I am writing about, but I still feel the need to post on a TV program I watched last night. The program was 'Jamie's Dream School' (CLICK), where Jamie Oliver sets up a school with some famous teachers from a wide variety of areas in society. He then takes 20 young people who have failed in ordinary schooling, to see if he can encourage them to give school another chance. Last night's program was the second in the series and still these young people have no idea about rules and respect for their elders. It really is disturbing that these young people think that they deserve respect. I was always taught, to get respect you had to earn it and so far non of them are earning respect as far as I can see. They sit talking in class, which is extremely rude, they play on their laptops and mobiles whilst the celebrity teacher is trying to instill some structure into their lives. I felt really sorry for Simon Gallow again last night, he was trying to talk to them about Shakespeare, in the end he ended up shouting at the group. Two of the girls got into a slanging match and were nearly expelled, which is probably why they failed schooling in the first place. I am all for engaging the youngsters to get them interested in education, but sometimes you are just hitting your head against a brick wall.
I really feel that since discipline in schools has been stopped, schooling has gone down the pan. When I was at school, which is not that many moons ago, we respected the teachers and if we did not you felt the wrath of the headmaster or deputy headmaster. I can honestly say, hand on heart I never visited either of them when I was at secondary school. The deputy headmaster was actually a lot more feared than the headmaster. I really do feel that discipline has to be bought back, because it is clear there is no or very little discipline in the home these days. I was always taught to respect my elders, always say please and thank you and to listen when talked too. My hope is that as this series goes on, we will see some of these young people turn a corner, but at the moment it is hard to see how this is going to happen. If you have not seen it you can watch it online and I think Youtube even has it to watch. Maybe I am getting old, but this is just my opinion.
Chat soon xx
Wednesday, 9 March 2011
Moving day again and for some odd reason we were awake at 3.30am. I really must adjust my internal alarm clock, I am not cut out for waking that early in the morning. Thankfully I did go back to sleep until 6.30am ish. I was then in need of a cuppa, so got up and put the kettle on. Marmite was doing her level best to get our attention, what with scratching at the back cabin curtains and running up and down the boat. This told me that both her food dishes were empty and she wanted feeding, but as she does not rule the boat, she would have to wait until Paddy was walked. He did not get walked until we had had our Porridge for breakfast. As we stepped off of the boat, it was clear we had had some rain over night, so the towpath was muddy once again underfoot. A couple of Mallard's were seeing who could quack the loudest, they were making quite a din. I then heard the whooshing of wings in the air which could mean only one thing. A Swan was coming into land. The local cob had been on his own for a couple of days with no sign of the Pen, so people were a little worried as to where she had gone, but the worry was over because she swooped down over the basin and landed with extreme grace alongside the boat. I just wish I had had my camera to hand, because I would have got some stunning photographs.
We made the boat ready for the off. Firstly we winded in the basin, took on water, disposed of rubbish, etc. Then we headed off for Foxton, and Black Horse Bridge where we would be taking on a food delivery. The cruise was only an hour and half, but was lovely in the intermittent sunshine.
We arrived at Foxton at 11.35am and moored up in our usual place with no other boats on the moorings. The morning sunshine has now turned into sunshine and showers, April seems to have arrived early. Marmite is a sleep in the back cabin and Paddy keeps popping his head out of the back cabin doors to see if anyone is around. He loves to greet people walking along the towpath. I am now waiting for our Tesco food delivery to arrive. Then we can have a Coffee, because we have run out, which is not usual for us. I blame myself, I usually know exactly what we have in the cupboard. I know I have ordered two jars this time, so one in use and one in stock. I like to keep a good stock of everything, just in case we should get stuck somewhere, where there are no shops. With a new food delivery arriving later, I have washed out the fridge and the food cupboard, so they are spick and span for the food to go into. Spring must be here ;0).
Not sure if we are moving tomorrow, because Keith may have to go back into Market Harborough to collect his new laptop which he has ordered. The fiasco of the old one went on until yesterday, when Keith finally asked for his money back because Dell were just messing him around and as this had been going on since December, enough was enough. So hopefully coming in the post tomorrow will be another laptop, which I sincerely hope does not let us down.
I now have to decide what we will be having for dinner tonight. There are days when I really have no desire to cook anything and I think this is one of them.
I hope your day is a good one or has been a good one, depending on where you are in the world.
Chat soon xx
Tuesday, 8 March 2011
Another chilly night meant we got a glorious morning. There was not a breath of wind, which gave beautiful reflections on the canal. The temperature over night got down to -4.1c at least, so a crisp start to the day and to how it made me feel. There is something really wonderful about a sunny start to the day, it really does help my start to the day.It has been a busy day one way or another for us. We had dentist's appointment at 10.25am and this was really something I was not looking forward too. I am not a dentist fan, but I need not have worried because my new dentist was very nice. I was fortunate that I only needed a check-up, Keith on the other hand has to have two fillings and a crown, so I will leave you to do the maths on how much that is going to cost. I can tell you it is not going to be cheap. With the dentist appointment over with much to my relief, we headed into the town to the Indoor Market, because Keith needed new cordroy trousers, as his have become thread bare. He got a good deal with the store holder who we have got to know, he let Keith have two pairs of trousers for £30, which is very good. We then went our seperate ways, Keith went off to buy dog food and I went to buy fruit and veg. We then met back at the boat eventually. I was back long before he was. I delivered some coal to a customer and spent the rest of the time chatting to boating friends. I am happy to say I can chat for England as you have probably worked out by the length of my posts ;0).
Before dinner a customer came and collected their coal order and of course I stood nattering to them after delivering their coal to their boat. I think we managed to put the world to right. If only it was that easy. With it being Pancake Day, of course I had to join in with the celebration, there was one slight problem though, I only had 2 Eggs and no Plain Flour, so had to think on my feet as to what to do. Hey presto I came up with Scotch Pancakes or Drop Scones, which only required 2 Eggs and Self-raising Flour, so I mixed up the batter and began cooking a mountain of Pancakes on the back cabin stove, which even though I say it myself tasted very yummy with Lemon and Caster Sugar on them. After a very busy day, I am not taking it easy for five minutes, before I have to tackle the washing-up. I will then have the fires to stoke up for the night and odds and sods to do before bedtime, which will probably be early tonight because I am feel everso slightly chream crackered.
Chat soon xx
To all my girlie followers.
Happy International Women's Day. (CLICK)
International Women's Day (8 March) is a global day celebrating the economic, political and social achievements of women past, present and future.
There isn't a International Men's Day, so what does this tell us????????