I felt I should put this picture here coz I think I didnt do too bad.
Sunday, 28 December 2008
I felt I should put this picture here coz I think I didnt do too bad.
Monday, 22 December 2008
Wednesday, 17 December 2008
The latest victim was a 79 year old lady dog walker. The rider didn't stop! Well that's them sorted file that under 'bunch of bloody cowards'.
You know if you open a path at the top of a hill that runs for about a mile it will attract a bunch of prats on wheels. What didn't BW understand about that?
They have put up 'SLOW DOWN' signs on the hill which have been ignored, Oh really! The have threatened 'stronger measures', but BW are keeping that to themselves for the time being.
Maybe they are going to install a Garrotte halfway down the hill. That would take them by surprise!
The answer is very simple a number of cycle gates spaced at a distance that hardly makes it worth while getting back on their bike.
I don't suppose anyone has any idea where one could lay ones hands on some redundant bollards they might do the trick.
Tuesday, 16 December 2008
Monday, 15 December 2008
Says I, "so I can forget our 5 years experience then?"
"Oh sorry, I didn't realise" says she.
Didn't realise! If she had read further she would have read the bit about not overtaking a reversing boat and the bit that says who the F*** are you!
It later transpired that she is a teacher and finds it very hard not to be in teach mode. I could show her how it is done with a shove in the water. That will learn her.
The trouble with reading it in a book is a book doesn't give you hands on experience. I have seen fleet owners reverse in a straight line at top speed but they have been doing it thirty years, and anyway what's the hurry?
Thursday, 11 December 2008
Wednesday, 10 December 2008
There are no wheel clamps in France. This is because when they were introduced the French public put super glue in the locks. Within two weeks they were withdrawn. Single-use wheel clamps simply are not economic. The French public acted together and stopped the scourge. We allowed it to go on and so we still live with them.
Whatever you think of the French they do tend to stand up to bureaucratic claptrap more than we do.
Monday, 8 December 2008
Tuesday, 2 December 2008
Halfie (nb SHADOW)came to visit Friday we had lunch at the Boat Inn with him and dinner at the pub later with the Alnwicks. This was also her ladyships birthday which started with opening of the prezzies ceremony.
Bones (nb BONES) had her new side hatch installed on Saturday and of course there was the banter in the evening. Probably the best one yet!
Sunday at 9 we were awoken by Alnwick to accompany them on the journey back, we were also joined by Simon (nb TORTOISE). What a good day out despite the cold and the rain. Bones and Jane and Simon left us at Heyford and Graham and I continued on. The girls had gone off car swapping and, arriving back at Aynho, walked sown to Somerton Lock to meet us. We managed to make it to Aynho. Jane cooked us dinner before we settled down to watch some very informative vids about trains. GC fell off the book case and tried to look nonchalant with that 'I was trying to do that' look. Graham took us both home about 10ish.
Friday, 28 November 2008
One of the filled holes and the flower tub.
Tuesday, 25 November 2008
Progress has been curtailed for a number of reasons, too flimsy to go into here. but this weekend will see the last excuse sink into oblivion. The Banter will have been and gone the new side hatch will have been fitted and a shed has appeared to hold the contents of the bedroom while it it is stripped.
We are still waiting for some pictures and drawing of a bed hinge, but with the fitting of the hatch we can get on with the main job of emptying the room for de-rusting and re-lining.
One of the reasons I bought a new boat is so I didn't have to do such things, got that wrong didn't I. Still if I am to do such things I couldn't do it for a nicer gel.
This morning the sun is clattering in through the window, extremely bright and warm.
This little gem appeared in my inbox this morning. I just couldnt resist posting it here.
KILLER BISCUITS WANTED FOR ATTEMPTED MURDER.
(Actual AP headline)
Lisa Burnett, 23, a resident of San Diego, was visiting her inlaws. While there she went to a nearby supermarket to pick up some groceries.
Several people noticed her sitting in the car with the windows rolled up with her eyes closed and both hands behind the back of her head. One customer who had been at the store for a while became concerned and walked over to the car. He noticed that Lisa'a eyes were now open and she looked very strange.
He asked if she was OK and Lisa said she had been shot in the back of the head and had been holding her brains in for over an hour. The man called the paramedics who had to break into the car because it was locked and Lisa refused to take a hands from the back of her head. When they finally got in they found Lisa had a wad of dough on the back of her head. A Pilsbury biscuit canister had exploded in the heat, making a loud noise that sounded like a gunshot and the wad of dough hit her in the back of her head. When she reached back to find out what it was she felt the dough and thought it was her brains. She initially passed out, but quickly recovered and tried to hold her brains in for over an hour until someone noticed and came to her aid. Lisa is a blonde
Monday, 24 November 2008
Friday, 14 November 2008
If you think you know someone who might be vulnerable to this sort of scam make sure they read the link.
Monday, 10 November 2008
According to those who make the rules Red Diesel is sold with a 60/40% split. That means 60% (extra duty will be paid) for propulsion and 40% (no extra duty paid) for domestic use. A lot of boaters would argue that this is wrong because they never move their boat,they then can declare 100% Domestic. HMRC say '60/40 is only a guide'. A boater may if he so desires declare 50/50 as long as he can support that claim.
It is up to the individual boater to declare his Propulsion/Domestic ratio. Any supplier who insist on charging the increase on all fuel supplied is breaking the law. If a boater says to a supplier that his consumption is 10/90 then the supplier has to accept that and pass that extra duty on to the HMRC. He cannot insist that you declare 60/40. It is not his job. The responsibility to make a correct declaration lays with the boater not the supplier.
The supplier is merely a tax collector, the hard work has been done by HMRC, so he does not need your name and address. You on the other hand need to keep records of cruising and fuel bought so you can justify your declaration to HMRC. No one is going to slap the supplier if you make a false declaration.
The extra duty brought about by the deregulation of red diesel, 40.66 p per litre, is only due on that fuel used for propulsion other fuel used for heating lighting (charging batteries) is not subject to the new surcharge. This new duty will also incur 5% VAT so most suppliers will round up to 43p per litre
Should a supplier want to charge you 60/40 on all fuel purchased then you should only buy enough fuel to get you to a supplier that knows his responsibility. And don’t forget to report errant suppliers to the HMRC so they can receive a slap. I have heard of one supplier that is making a £15 surcharge if you declare other than 60/40. I personally would say this is illegal, not because he is charging, but because this may encourage you to accept 60/40 when this is not true. Hence the errant supplier may possibly be aiding and abetting you in making a false declaration, this is against the law.
HM Revenue & Customs has specifically stated in its briefing notes to sellers that they are not responsible for questioning what percentage a customer declares, nor for verifying the customers name and address.
So thats' it then, simple as V-A-T.
Tuesday, 4 November 2008
Monday, 3 November 2008
At last the camera gave it up! Hurrah!!!
Friday, 31 October 2008
Thursday, 30 October 2008
Wednesday, 29 October 2008
The sad thing is that there is Armco piling here and it is a nice place to moor if the vegetation could be cut back. It would be interesting to find out if the local inhabitants on the other side of the canal have anything to do with this. I know of at least one who complains regularly about boats mooring there.
Leaving the boat in the lock I trotted the 100 yards or so back to where the cycle was. I tilted the machine away from the fence to get at the lock. Imagine my surprise when the cycle came away from the fence lock an' all.
Some joker had cut through the cable. This reminded me that earlier in the morning another boater had asked me if I had heard anything in the early hours as she had had two cycles stolen in the night. This I found curious as she was moored up about a mile away why would I hear anything.
However I can only assume that the tealeaf had spotted my bike and decided to 'prep' it for collection later. So we are short of a bike lock. What I don't understand is that it not the sort of bike anyone with half a brain would want to nick. It rusty as hell and looks like it was just dragged out of the canal. Still I suppose it was dark. The mind boggles.
Friday, 24 October 2008
Wednesday, 22 October 2008
Tuesday, 21 October 2008
Saturday saw her franticly sawing oblong sections of ply and Steve (nb OCELOT), who had just innocently sauntered down hoping the kettle might be on, ended up nailing them to the old pole.
Her ladyship now encouraged buy the success of this venture is planning her next
experiment venture in the Banana this time with a sail which somehow she thinks we will assist her with, time to visit my mother in London methinks. I wonder if Steve might like to come along?
Monday, 20 October 2008
I think I just may know what the problem is. Those who are employed to do the grass are CRAP at doing their job, but then again who do they have as a role model?
This is a mooring. Note the neatly trimmed something or other. The overhanging willow is almost blocking the canal. The contractors started at the bottom end and as far as I know continued on up the canal. We are at Wolvercote and they certainly came this far.
I am a Nokia phone fan, they seem to me to be much stronger/hard wearing than all other phones I have had, but this time I went for an LG. I may live to regret this but I do live in hope.
My phone package included the hand set for free, which is quite amazing really Especially as it has a built in 5 Mega pixel camera. I had been looking to get a new camera but won't have to now.
I wonder if it floats?I knicked the pic
Friday, 17 October 2008
Likewise any boater worth his salt knows you don't get off a boat single handed without a rope. Well most boaters know. Last night I did a short run in the dark. The tunnel light was pointing too high so at a convenient rail bridge I placed the bows on the bank and stepped off to adjust the lamp. Not realising that the contrast between the bright lamp and the dark behind it would stop me from judging distance at the front of the boat and I couldn't see to step on to the boat.
The front of the boat drifted away across the other side of the canal following the stern and laid itself neatly against the wall. Oh dear what to do?
Well I cursed a bit then I cursed a bit more and if that wasn't enough I cursed louder like that was going to elicit help from above. There was no way to get across the canal unless I shimmied up the bridge and climbed across then jumped down in the dark . . . er I don't think so.
After about ten minutes the boat started to move very slowly backwards not a lot of good because even a suicide mission off the bridge would soon be out of the question, but lo and behold (do people say that anymore) as the boat drifted back the bow came away from the wall. Using all my 'mental power' I willed the boat to come to me.
It took about 20 minutes all told to from when I stepped off until I stepped back on again which given the stupidity of the situation wasn't bad.
It took me a while to find said kiosk, but when I did I asked, holding out my watch, "Can you fix this".
Increasing the cost of continuous cruising (which includes continuous mooring)by a significant sum—so as to provide an incentive for people to seek permanent moorings elsewhere, and to raise income which could partly be used for enforcement of continuous mooring.
Tell me if I am right. This possible proposal is suggesting that CCers have their licence fee hiked to raise funds to deal with continuous moorers. Why is that something CCers should sort out.
The number of itinerant moorers has steadily increased over the last 5 years. BW has had the temerity to take their licence fees and do nothing to stop them. This problem is mis-management. The funding for this should come out of the fund put aside for senior execs bonuses, who often by their own addmissions have failed to do what they are paid for. When I failed in my job the only thing I got was my cards.
It would seem that we live in a society where screwing up is OK if you sit in a big fancy chair because you can shaft some other poor bugger to correct your blunders. Well its about time boaters stood together. All (all boaters) make a point this weekend of writing to at least three government officials including your MP.
Wednesday, 15 October 2008
Today I went out to find the deal I could ive with. I went to 3 I went to Virgin I went to phones4you even O2 and the carphone warehouse in fact I went everywhere I could with the exception of Vodaphone (who once tried to charge me 13 payments for a 12 month contract I did suggest that they were welcome to come and get their money but they declined when I told them I lived in Al Qaeda central Riyadh).
The trouble with mobile phones is there is so much choice. So after a day in the Oxford metropolis I came back with a nice bottle of wine. Good choice methinks.
Tuesday, 14 October 2008
My new computer is also a Fujitsu Seimens (stick with what you know). The spec is just about the same as the old one which was designed for XP, however, this machine has Vista Basic installed. It does nothing I ask it to do straight away. Whereas things should happen in the click of a button it seems intent on showing me its little "wait I'm getting to it" sign. It does loads of things I don't want it to do, but most important it does them slowly which is not what one would expect from the latest 'sh!t off a shovel' system.
Getting to my hotmail should be easy but Vista no longer supports web based HTTP email. And for some reason when I installed Live Mail, as it says I should to get hotmail, it didn't bring my contact list with it. MSM Messenger also lost it contact list so I have a list now with only Bones on it.
Of course it could be that Vista was not meant for this spec computer, but all the computer sheds seem to insist on giving you what you don't want or need. Free with the computer is a disk 'worth' £12.49. it is in essence a taster disc which will let you have a service for a short while then charge you to use it after the expiry time (which is probably about the time you have uploaded all your pics onto their system for 'safe' keeping). So its an advert and not a freebie at all.
I wonder why when a company says, "WE HAVE WHAT YOU WANT" they don't add "AS LONG AS YOU WANT WHAT WE HAVE" it would make life so much easier. It would also help if they stopped box shifting and offered a bit of flexibility.
I think I will install my legal copy of XP if I can get Vista off completely. Life was so much easier then, but I seem to remember saying that about 97, 98 and even 3.1.1
Sunday, 12 October 2008
Increasing the cost of continuous cruising (which includes continuous mooring) by a significant sum—so as to provide an incentive for people to seek permanent moorings elsewhere, and to raise income which could partly be used for enforcement of continuous mooring.
In the absence of agreement about a workable strategy for differentiating continuous cruisers and continuous moorers, British Waterways must continue to treat both groups in the same way.
I would suggest that if BW cant find a way of diferentiating then resign and let someone in that can. One stays put the other moves. It aint rocket science.
Apologies to the boys of Monty Python
Saturday, 11 October 2008
Tuesday, 30 September 2008
Maybe I am just sensitive, but I cannot abide umbrellas. The owners of this dubious fashion accessory seem incapable of understanding the damage that can be wrought with the rib ends to anyone's eyes let alone mine.
Umbrellas have a simple function to keep the rain off ones head and shoulders, so why, oh why, oh why do some people carry umbrellas that could house a circus. A golf umbrella is for the golf course not the city.
I am surprised that H&S of even the EU have not outlawed them yet.
I can only say that the morons who wield these dangerous weapons should at least be compelled to have insurance lest they injure anyone especially me!
Maybe this is the answer
Sunday, 28 September 2008
Friday, 26 September 2008
Wednesday, 24 September 2008
The Government is entirely committed to providing excellent medical care for the members of the Armed Forces and for veterans and we share the aspiration of the petitioners to see Servicemen and women and veterans receive the best medical care possible. However, we do not believe that this would be achieved by attempting to create a separate military and veterans hospital in the UK.
So its not about money then?
“The principle behind the decision to move from stand-alone military hospitals to facilities which co-operate with the NHS was the right one, from a clinical, administrative and financial point of view.”
The former UK military hospitals, which have been progressively phased out from the mid 1990s, increasingly failed to offer the range and volume of cases that military doctors, nurses and allied health professionals needed to remain at the leading edge of their professions. This is a pre-requisite for providing the best possible operational medical care which is at the heart of
the Defence Medical Services.
Tuesday, 23 September 2008
Monday, 22 September 2008
Tuesday, 9 September 2008
Thursday, 4 September 2008
I had my boat built specifically for me to live on and to this end I sold my house to finance it. It is my home it is not a ship it is the only home I have.
I did not pay VAT on my brick house. So why should I or anyone pay VAT on any house they buy. There is no law that says I cannot live on my boat full time so I do.
As long a God makes little apples I will never understand why HMRC insist that this is a ship but doesn't qualify as a ship for living on.
Sunday, 31 August 2008
HMRC v Lt Cmdr Colin Stone (The Kei)
HMRC has lost its appeal in the
High Court, against a Tribunal decision that a sea-going Vessel (a reproduction Dutch barge) qualified for zero-rating within the meaning of Schedule 8, Group 8, item 1 Value Added Tax Act 1994.
The appellant (Commander Stone) was applying to bring in a houseboat which was capable of self propulsion. However, he was intending to use it for a residential purpose. HMRC argued that VAT was payable but the High Court confirmed that it qualified for zero-rating.
Wednesday, 27 August 2008
If you feel you have something to say on the topic I will gladly publish it here.
Sympathies my a**e
Of course Gillian Stokes was 'Harrisioned' about her comments re Continuous Cruisers and Continuous Moorers.
There is a difference and she fails to see it.
Although in her last email she does leave out CCers when she says "That Di, is how I knew they were continuous moorers. I would have thought it obvious." If she wanted it to be obvious she should learn to differentiate.
A Continuous Cruiser pays the same licence fee as a marina moorer and as such has the same right to moor on a visitor mooring as a marina moorer which ever store they may be near.
She may come out of her secure mooring once in a blue moon and have problems mooring outside Sainsbury's but genuine CCers have the same problem irrespective of the colour of the lunar orb.
Being a CCer is not a 'privilege' as she says, it is a planned for life choice. It is also absolutely legal due to an Act of Parliament.
She needs to remember that if a CCer is charged a mooring fee they may well just stay put and ignore the limits.
She also needs to remember that a genuine CCer is not taking up space in a large pile of bricks that can be better utilised by a family.
Tuesday, 26 August 2008
According to the site http://www.ragdoll.co.uk/ Rag Doll is not currently on air at this time. And if you ask if you can visit Rag Doll the answer is no 'The Rag Doll is not open to visitors a the moment'.
Addendum: I am told this is not 'THE' Rag Doll. B*ll*cks!
Monday, 25 August 2008
I have spoken on the phone a few times since and was very pleased when her now husband Steve Clarke called and said they would like to visit this weekend.
They arrived at 9 am with Jaynthie's sister Chandry in tow and after the usual pleasantries we set off up Abingdon Lock for water and a pump out. The queue was enormous and it took about two hours to get sorted. Following this we set off down stream heading for Clifton Hampden to go for lunch at the Plough, up the weir stream. On arrival there were three plastic boats moored up on the only available moorings and the kids were all playing around more plastic boats. They weren't eating at the pub just playing.
I turned around and made my way down to the bridge past the lock where we moored and went to the Barley Mow for our lunch. I was surprised to learn that both Jaynthie and Chandry remember my youngest daughter Kim, from photos, and the fact that she had graduated from Uni.
After lunch I had a call from Kim (funny that?) asking where I was and could she visit ....di da di da di da. We arranged that she and Jim would catch up with us at Culham Lock. Sure enough when we were in the lock K&J arrived. I checked out with the locky if it was alright to stop for half an hour. "Yes, but right on the far end." So we did.
It was a surprise that they should want to come down but not so much as the surprise I got when I discovered the reason. Introductions were made, I think J&C were quite pleased to meet Kim.
Kim and Jim have been together for ten years. They lived in my house while I was away globe-trotting and eventually bought it. This weekend they decided to make it official and Kim was toting an antique engagement ring. I am so happy for them both. And glad I was the first one they wanted to tell. Woooo Hoooooo!
K&J left after about half an hour and we continued on our way to Abingdon. Arriving about 6:15 and mooring up in the same place I had left 9 hours ago. It was great to see them all again. Steve seemed more relaxed after a day on the boat, and the girls were happy that they had seen this old buzzard once again.
Sunday, 24 August 2008
We stayed over in Wolverhampton so we were close to the airport for Bones' trip to Holland. Funny hotel, there seemed to be no staff on over night. We got up very early, well early for us anyway, and left by the back door ( which locked behind us) to get the car in the carpark, only to find the carpark was locked and we had to wait over half an hour for some one to come and let us out. So we wasted that time getting wet.
We wont stop there again!
Bones is now in Holland drinking coffee in the local café.
Thursday, 21 August 2008
He is not new to boating and not new to the river. At the very least I think he needs his eyes testing if he couldn't see his proximity to the island. He was relying on his 12yo son on the front to tell him where his bow was in relation to the island, who of course couldnt hear and might not of appreciated the stream of the river.
Salters Steamers do the same manoeuvre he was trying several times a day with out problem and with a damned bigger boat. Obviously not a man to be near on the river.
Always remember you can't turn a 60ft boat in a 59ft space.
“The conclusion of the report is that brickwork in the lock was not protruding or in such condition to have been the cause of the incident.
Using information from engineer reports, photographs and an eyewitness statement, it is considered the most likely cause of the incident was that the crew of the boat concerned, regrettably, did not manage the locking appropriately
“British Waterways is confident the lock remains in sound condition and is safe for boaters to continue using in accordance with good practice.”
I fully understand that it is possible that those locking through 'may' have been in attentive, but "Did not manage the locking appropriately", does not explain why this boat ended up. . . up ended. . . does it?
Wednesday, 20 August 2008
She then goes on to berate CCers 'who are multyplying by the day' and 'it's enough to make a person weep'.
'Another question', she says, 'why do these 'continuous cruisers' have to be so scruffy (lack of paint, wheelbarrow, logs, bike, their worldly goods and not forgetting the blue tarpaulin'.
I am not sure what CCers have to do with being 'Stoned at Wallingford'.I assume that she has never been on a council estate. Though most residents are upstanding members of the comunity there are always those who 'appear' not to be. It doesn't make them bad people just people you would rather not live near. (I could tell you stories)
In my time on the canal I have met many people. Some with smart boats, some not so smart, some in need of a good lick of paint. One thing that amazes me about positively 'mankey' boats, well those I have been on, is the outside isn't always a good indication of whats on the inside or the people that own them. I suppose it's all about priorities. When the choice is 'eat' or 'paint' I know which I would do.
Not everyone lives on a boat because they want to, some do so simply because its all they have.
You have to love her, but I think Yvonne Umpleby neads a reality check!
Tuesday, 19 August 2008
Monday, 18 August 2008
So while I was rubbing down the old varnish I decided to recess the engine control panel. This I did on Saturday and the key switch is no longer in danger of being switched off. There is an added bonus in that I now have a place to keep my mobile phone and camera.
There is still a lot of rubbing down to do below the engine control panel down to the floor, but at least I am well on the way.
Saturday, 16 August 2008
Friday, 15 August 2008
The Duck arriving late.
Pic stolen from their BLOG