Thursday, 12 November 2009


Lovely day for boating, all set and no wind; but forgot to take the television aerial down didn't I? Also setting off single handed, realised that one has to manage ropes by one's self.

Pulled up nicely by the arnco at the end of the marina and uncoiled one of he centre ropes (not being silly and stepping of the the boat to do this, of course). And then having disassembled TV mast, got under way again.

Jeeves was at bridge 39 to wave me on if no traffic was offering to ram us amidships as I put the helm over to head south again.

Yes! Gleemaiden is off for a blacking and will have to bare all before the stalwart chaps at Grantham Bridge (also Willow Wren of Les Morton and David Blagrove fame).
Had I been working locks and heaving on ropes one gets quite warm in any weather; as a solo operative though on stretches with few such diversions and opportunities for exercise, the man at the 'hellum' can really get to feel the cold.

Anyway, I was only starting to lick the the ice away from under my fingernails and wishing that I could drift for a bit while I made a coffee-laced rum, when the mobile rang. I was passing under Clifton bridge with another boat coming the other way - in fact I nearly dropped another mobile phone in the cut while ducking under the bridge. You also have to dodge bricks - some chav managed to drive a car over the edge; but the canal is free of that at least.

So; 'Clifton Bridge' said I, missing the oncoming boat by inches. The golf course will be coming up shortly.

Ten minutes later another call tells me to look out for her and Biggles - so we slide into a nice strait mooring, not far from the bottom lock at Hillmoton.

Here os a picture of Gleemaiden in drydock and one of Biggle scared pantless by a large German Shepherd at Grantham Bridge Boats.

Got a brilliant e-mail from Neil and Ruth on Nerus (see blogs passim),which tells of trying times that can occur when faced with a water shortage on the cut! Neil has told of some of the odd discomforts that you might experience when waking up in you bed at this angle - I can only say that we would have found ourselves heavily entangled under the gunwale with five feet of uphill mattress to negotiate before even going to the loo along a sloping corridor (thanks for the detail Mr S).

Now here is another think - I haven't done the pictures yet, so I'll have to go and get the camera! Damn! Done that now, so on to the next posting.

Tuesday, 10 November 2009

Bonfire Night

Look out! Its Bonfire Night!

No bonfire, but lots of . . .

. . . well fireworks.

This has nothing to do with boating we simply weren't there - there doesn't seem to be a lot of interest from boaters in making fire and brimstone erupt around the cut or at the marina. Anyway dogs don't like them and towpaths aren't really suited to pyrotechnic displays.

So for the first time in a number of years we had a little display in our back garden. And jolly good it was too, a bit on the light side compared with the public displays, but if you really want to have some fun throwing money away in sparks, smoke and bangs, I could recommend such an evening as we had.

Just think for the cost of only five packets of cigarettes, we had about two hours of colourful if smoky entertainment without having to worry about withdrawal symptoms afterwards.
Derek and Sheila were on assited with the celebrations and Derek was a great help with the handy match and lighted taper. Derek also had a mortar type of firework which would have put the fear into . . . . . no never mind, needless to say that it was quite spectacular!

Minnie and Cain from next came to watch our shenanigans before they and their friend held quite a display of their own - some great rockets!

And Biggles tells us that both wars are over and he is quite happy to stay in bed and ignore all the noise and kerfuffle.