Thursday, March 23, 2017

Happy 80th Birthday Len

Just a big HAPPY BIRTHDAY to Del's Dad who would have been 80 today

Mizzy Day

Woke up to a really mizzy day, loads of heavy showers and even the cat wasn't interested in going out..
So we sorted a few things out like our insurance and banking, and Del changed our DVD player for a new one, the old one we had had for twenty years. It had just started to jump a bit and got stuck sometimes and went back to the beginning.
It was a bit ironic, because when we turned on the TV there was a news flash about the terrorism attack at Westminster in London, those poor people, I think its something we all dread....

Wednesday, March 22, 2017

Cruising with the cat

After a bit of a lazy day yesterday we decided we should move today. The sun was beaming through the portholes and Tooty was in after a night of being out on the tiles..
He has been marvellous, and turned into a good boat cat, he meows to go out through the cratch doors (no cat flap on Derwent6) and then once we've gone to bed, meows at the porthole window in the bedroom to come back in.. We don't know how he knows which boat to come to or how he knows which porthole to meow at, but he does. When he comes in he purrs like a traction engine and seems so pleased with himself that he has found his food and the lovely warm log burner in the corner..
Anyway, we set off in the sunshine but the wind was blowing well and bitter, the good news was it was blowing from behind us so with Derwent6 just off Idle we cruised along nicely..
It was a bit tricky slowing down past moored boats with the washing machine on, as you have to keep the revs up, but we managed it..  The canal looks so different when the sun shines as you get the feeling of spring, just round the corner..
We found a nice mooring and Tooty heard the rattle of the chains as we tied up.. he gets so annoyed when we move as he has just made his territory where we are and then has to do it all again when we stop in a different place lol..
He rubs his scent up and down the fenders along the gunwale and then steps off doing the same in the bushes..
Al got out the washing line and soon had things blowing in the breeze, as Tooty watched on..
 Del chopped up the wood that was on the roof and then went on the hunt for more.. he came back with some nice Hawthorn which will do nicely through those cold spring evenings..

Tuesday, March 21, 2017

Honeymoon Recovery period

Oh my Goodness! what a lovely day yesterday, but we were feeling it this morning, aching, voices gone and feeling fat from over eating..
Yesterday we opened all our cards and then got ourselves ready.
We then went out for our Sunday lunch at The Folly pub and our reserved table was right by a roaring fire, perfect!
With our candle lit and our huge dinners on the table we tucked into the food and the bottle of wine we had ordered.. It all got a bit cosy as we reminisced over the last 38 years together.. Yes there have been some ups and downs, and we have lost some lovely people along the way, but despite all this we just realise how lucky we both are. We know you make your own luck, and you have to work very hard to put yourselves in certain situations, but in life you have to take advantage of the good times.. You just never know when that will stop, and your situation can change in a instant.. Live life today, not tomorrow, there may not be a tomorrow! Our motto on Derwent6 is "Born to be Wild, Looking for Adventure in whatever comes our way"
So where were we, we had lunch and treated ourselves to dessert, and with full tummies and a warm fire went back on the beers and G&T's
At 4.00pm Dave Pepper was setting up for an acoustic session, and before long a few others had turned up with a harmonica, a wash board, more guitars and singers.. Well the afternoon turned out to be a bit of a jamming session, and yes we were both singing along to it all tapping anything we could find, fuelled by drink..
We got back to Derwent6 at about 9.30pm, just!.  made the bed and fell into it..
So today is recovery day, we are just chilling, looking at the rain and getting some things sorted out for our Spring trip on Derwent6 (more of that later)

Sunday, March 19, 2017

34 Years (who's counting)

Its our 34th Wedding Anniversary today and a great 38 years together..  We met in Shoreham Village hall in Kent, and danced to "Three Times a Lady" like most in that era.. Did all our courting in Shoreham and walked up on the hills there.
We got married in Shoreham Church at midday on the 19th March 1983 and went on to the Monte Carlo restaurant for our reception.. From there we left at 6.00pm and stayed at a hotel at Heathrow, where the next morning we flew to Florida for our honeymoon..  We have never looked back from that day..
Today we are going to the Folly Pub at Napton on the Hill for a nice Sunday lunch and they also have some music later on the day... Lovely memories and happy days...

A window of Opportunity

After looking at the weather we only had one window of opportunity today. The winds were calm till midday and the rain was due at some point in the afternoon, so we set off at 8.00am

It was lovely cruising but it had turned a bit colder so it was wrap up, with hats and gloves on the tiller..
It is still very quiet on the canals and we never passed a boat, but it was lovely scenery.. It was a two hour stint and we soon got to Napton where we turned into the winding hole and the wind did its job..
We then saw a nice mooring, so reversed Derwent6 into it with ease..
Al then went up to post a couple of letters and also get some shopping while Del sorted out some engine jobs..
It then got very windy and started to rain so we banked up the fire and stayed put..

A Contrast Day

We looked out of the porthole window to see the wind blowing and a cloudy day, bit of a contrast from yesterday. It also felt a bit colder and it was an effort to do anything..
We sorted out some paperwork in the morning and put the world to rights (as you do)
It felt so lazy we both had to do something in the afternoon, so Del polished the underside of the roof brasses and Al cleaned inside all her cupboards in the galley and some boat work (not housework lol).

Thursday, March 16, 2017

Cruising the Spring Sunshine

We left this morning around 11.00am after the fog had cleared, and made our way to Braunston. Blimey has Spring really started, it turned out to be a beautiful sunny day. We passed the new marina entrance at Dunchurch also the widebeam which had found a spot to turn around.
It was also nice to see the lambs bouncing around..
Braunston was quiet and there were loads of places to moor, but we took a sharp right turn and headed towards Napton..

We stopped at bridge 100 and found a nice spot in the sunshine where we had lunch..
It was then chill time for Al as she read her book, while Del chopped up a bit of kindling for the next cold spell.
We then noticed a boat we hadn't seen for ages, n.b The Answer. It was nice to have a good catch up with Beryl and Gary..
It was getting dusk as we got back and Tooty was sussing out the new surroundings by climbing a few bushes..
With football in the evening and a lovely Chicken Kiev what more could a man want.. Oh just a nice sunset with a beer.

Wednesday, March 15, 2017

Wide beam on the Oxford, that's wrong!

We both feel so good being back on Derwent6, you could hear the birds singing, and the splashing in the water the ducks were making... We didn't know what time it was and didn't care either.. We were encouraged to get up by Tooty the cat who wanted his breakfast.. It was a dull day but we wanted to move just to cruise again..
We left Clifton and made our way up to Hillmorton Locks where we were surprised to see the lock keepers working.. They had a school trip organised and were showing the kids how a lock worked, but as we got there they all had to go back to school, but the lock keepers locked us through anyway before they packed up, that was lucky!
We got to the top and took things nice and slow, just as well because when we got to bridge 83 we meet a wide beam, yes you read that correctly, a wide beam on the Oxford.
They had been told they could get to the Barby straight to turn round, as they wanted to see if they would be able to get to the new marina at Onley, they couldn't!!!!
They had already hit the just repaired bridge and were thinking how do we get out of this one.. We told them, reverse all the way back to Braunston. We carried on and moored at Onley prison moorings where the new marina is being built..
Half hour later along comes this wide beam in reverse.
We tried to help by finding a wide section of canal but it was too shallow for their 60 foot boat..
We said our goodbyes and they carried on reversing and we heard the scraping of the roof on bridge 82.
Shame, it was a nice boat, but our licence fee will be on fixing bridges up the Oxford if this carries on!
Al put her washing out and then we had a walk down to see how the marina was getting on. Blimey its a big site and will take a few boats.. Apparently it has fibre optic broadband and heated pipes to stop freezing through the winter!

Our Life's Back

We woke up to a very misty morning which showed signs of being a lovely day, so time to get out..
We though it was time that Tooty went back on the grassy banks of the cut..  We first emptied the waste tank and then filled with diesel, and then set off... We had had a restriction here for quite a while, due to a new railway bridge which has now been completed..
We carried on through Brownsover and then on to Clifton, one of our favourite spots, which was empty, purrrfect for Tooty.
We chilled in the afternoon soaking up the sunshine and the cat was in and out every time a dog went past..
Del went on the hunt for wood and soon come back with a load for cutting up..
Ahhh it feels so good to be back out, at home, and with our life back on track..
Del watched the football in the evening and Tooty spent all night out.. leaving us a present of one mouse on our doorstep..

Tuesday, March 14, 2017

Picture perfect!

Yesterday we spent some time sorting out paperwork, but we did get a call from our picture framing guy in Rugby saying our two pictures from the house in Shoreham were ready to collect.. We just wanted to bring a little bit of the great memories back to Derwent6..
So today we put them up and it was like they were meant to be here.. We have the memories of the house Al was born in and our courting days, above the bed, and of the walks we went on with Al's Mum and Dad around the local area of Shoreham, in the galley..

Also the picture our friends gave us when we launched is now framed and up on the wall, instead of standing up on the side!
In the afternoon we drove down to Kent and went to Terry's retirement and Ron's 60th Birthday meal, a combined celebration..

We drove back to Derwent6 afterwards on empty roads and tiptoed along the pontoon at 2.00am..

Saturday, March 11, 2017

New Carpet fitted

It was up early this morning, as we had a visitor. It was the carpet fitter. We had decided to have new carpets fitted to Derwent6. Our home had always been a NO SHOES boat, but the carpets were eight and a half years old and just looking a bit faded after all the coal, mud and dust put on them over the years. Steve the fitter arrived at 9.00am and had cut the carpet to fit in the saloon and the bedroom..
After removing the old carpet it was found that the underlay was still in tip top condition, which saved us a few bob..
We were really happy with the first carpet which was stain free and would even take diluted bleach to remove stains, so this carpet was the same..
Steve was with us for three hours and we were very pleased with the results, but someone else wasn't very happy..
See if you can spot him in this picture.

Tooty hid under the duvet all the time Steve was here, Tooty scaredy cat!
After a bit of lunch we then had the tidy up operation.. Carpet fibres were everywhere, and our little Dyson struggled to cope.
Del was set on doing the brasses and polishing down one side as it was a lovely day. It paid off as Derwent6 now looks great again..
In the evening we went out for something to eat, making the most of it whilst we still have the car ..