Thursday, 19 June 2008

A riding we will go.

Only two more days to holiday time. Tomorrow I will take the boat up to the Oxford canal where it will be taken over by Bottle for the week we are away.

Just have to finish the cleaning and tidy up a bit.

I have put in my bid for a days horse riding. The last time I was on a horse was in Teneriffe on a mountain track. Stupid horse thought that it had to eat all the green bits, which I didn't mind, but some were over the edge of the path that was scary. Do horses not realise that the fat bloke on the back might fall off? Obviously not!

Sunday, 15 June 2008

Glorious weekend

Yesterday Bones bought the great ship of the same name out of mothballs and floated her up the river to moor in front of me, the idea being that she could use my hoover to clean her boat.

Late in the evening, to the herald of jazz from 'PB GORING', Salty & Nora (CWF) arrived on 'Lady Elgar'. We had a BBQ out on the bank. You meet the nicest people out boating.

This morning Snibble aboard nb ISIS was shouting at my boat on his way past, silly boy I was on nb Bones. He is off to Oxford for a few days but will stop by on the way back. I feel another BBQ coming on.

This afternoon Giles and Vannessa arrived on their plastic boat and a late Sunday lunch was had, again on the bank, after a game of Croquet. Methinks we let Vanessa win so she could go busy herself about the galley cooking dinner.

Life is so hard but I suppose someone has to do it.

Thursday, 12 June 2008

Oh at last!

She with the little aching tooth has finally found a weeks holiday away, with en site vinyard how cool is that. Now we can concentrate on packing. Bones thinks we should start packing now! Errrr.... I don't think so!

Wednesday, 11 June 2008


The BBC Weather site says rain Friday Saturday Sunday so I moved Milly M below the bridge where the water has to rise 4 feet before I need to worry about Scaffold poles again.


Seems I have a lot of readers from down under this six all came on within a few minutes of each other.

New Zealand Napier
New Zealand Auckland
Australia Melbourne Victoria
Australia Catherine Hill Bay, New South Wales
Australia Perth Western Australia
Australia Sydney New South Wales

Tuesday, 10 June 2008

Oh B*ll*cks

I recently recieved a parking ticket for overstaying at the local carpark. Being the good scrounger that I am I wrote a letter with the payment.

Dear Sir

I have been stranded on my boat in Abingdon since the river started to rise. A friend loaned me her car so I can get around. I simply overslept on the day the ticket was issued due to a worrying night about rising water levels. During my time here I have put many hundreds of pounds into the local economy and paid over £50 in parking fees. I would ask that you may consider waving this parking ticket on the basis that I am here, through no fault of my own and had a very tiring few days organising a safe berth for my boat the Milly M

Yours sincerely

This afternoon I got anothe one! I doubt I can use the same letter this time. Is this legalised highway robbery?

Monday, 9 June 2008


John Orentas sold his boat after many years afloat. Today it cruised past with its new owner, also named John, at the tiller.


Water levels have gone down and boating is fun again.

This morning I went for water above the lock so I can now have a shower and stop stinking.

Thursday, 5 June 2008

No worries now.

I am still able to get on the boat but if the water should rise much more I will be moored in the middle of a field. A very kind builder chappie came last night to save the day. A few scaffold poles did the trick.
Now I can leave the boat without worrying.

Wednesday, 4 June 2008

More water.

More water here on the Thames. The level has risen 1 inch in the last two hours.

This is the canoe portage this morning at 10:30.

Part of the weir.


What is needed, when one is marooned on one's boat, is a distraction.

Distractions come in all shapes and sizes, but I cannot believe someone took the time to put this one on the internet.


Tuesday, 3 June 2008

Rising Water

I am sat on the Meadow mooring at Abingdon (North of the bridge) Last Wednesday we watched the water rise 8/10 inches in a few hours. It dropped over the next few days. This afternoon, Tuesday, still in the same place (lockie said stay put) the water is over the hard edge by about 14 inches, access is by plank only. My large plank is roped to the side of the boat in the hope that it will help to keep the boat over the channel

The river is set to rise and I am looking for a couple of scaffold poles to stop me getting beached on the field. Culham weir is fully drawn (Edit) Abingdon is on red boards. The River OCK is about to flood. I think coming this way would be foolhardy there is an awful lot of water coming down the river in the next few days.

Nite Puddles XXXXX Sleep well.

Monday, 2 June 2008

Different strokes for different folks!

David Hymers of Narrow Boat World has been on about Bollards. He seems to have some weird idea that that boaters have to do everything one way, his way, I think. Seems you don't need to use a bollard in a lock you should control your boat with the engine. I often use bollards for slowing my boat if they are there. The question I ask is who made him the Admiral of the Fleet. People do things how they are comfortable doing them. I don't think anyone has the 'one perfect way'. It isn't alway so cut and dried to some folk.

The same could be said of the ladder. According to David, "The ladders are of no benefit to boaters, except for single-handers, whose activities are really only made possible by the ladders". Of course this is a totally untrue comment. I don't think I have seen another single hander use a ladder but plenty of crews seem to. Maybe he doesn't get out much?

There are a few things I have learned in 1300 miles and over 1000 locks. First the lock is for boats, the hard stuff around the edge is for people. Second pulling your boat in/out by hand removes pounds off the waistline. Yes I have climbed up the ladder a few times, but more often than not pull the boat in and/or out. In my first 3/4 months onboard I reduced from about 17 stone to 13 so I have some idea what I am talking about (those of you who have seen me out and about may have noticed my clothes are all baggy). OK there are more but not now.

Anyway I digress, there is more than one way to skin a cat. Yes the old boaters had all the tricks, many of which I am learning, but I will wager that they didn't all do all the tricks the same way. There would surely have been local variations as there are local variations in speech or making cheese. What is important is that a boater is comfortable with the way he does things and that can only add to the enjoyment of his boating experience.


This is Lewsey from The Green Man soaking up some sun last week. Not long after she got a soaking.