((before you start, i just want to say that in you New Zealand travel book you went on about the toilet and being ill… it seems a standard for you on holiday Peachy.)) and as I’ve said before my blogs/books are about real life, it’s not like when i write fiction and no-one visits the facilities or gets caught short. Can you imagine Jack Bauer from 24 stopping to have a wee or Frodo Baggins getting caught short or the side of a hillside! ((Fair point and i suppose most conversations with boaters comes around to toilets at some point, as you were. my bad but also that lead nicely into sharing that your New Zealand Book, 187 Kilometres, turn left, is 2 years old today! Book Birthday – only £1.99 on kindle and free on unlimited. Get your copy today)) Nice work Brackets, smooth link in #teamwork. ((well if you don’t make a few pennies from your writing you end up getting other jobs and then don’t have time to blog so it’s all about self preservation))
Woke up to an idyllic morning on the canal and an early morning cruise for an emergency toilet emptying. ((told you – clues in the title)) Hopefully there is an Elsan at the Willington canal services. We really want to replace our toilet as although it functions well it’s a bit old and we want more like a toilet in a house, so with a ceramic seat etc. Ours does have a fairly large tank which is good but not when it coming to emptying as it’s heavy! So, we intend to get a new toilet when we are back from cruising and have a few pound notes to spare. We’ve just had a bill from Canal and River Trust for £1,200 for the engine work – which is actually good value for the work we’ve had done but it’s a bit of a stinger to the old bank balance esp after buying the boat and all the other work we’ve had done. ((so, what Peachy is saying if any of you want to buy her books or visit the website and buy her a coffee it will go towards buying a new bog, sorry, toilet))
The idea is we will get two cassettes for the toilet and then we have a spare. Ideally, if we don’t have to empty the toilet for a week when cruising it gives us a few more options. Generally, we will be moored in the Marina so not a problem as there is an Elsan on site and it’s unlikely we will continuously cruise for a while unless I win the lottery or my book sales go through the roof ((More chance of winning the lotto Peachy and stop going on about toilets now we’ve all had enough))
Anyway, it’s onwards to the facilities ((Sorry folks, i tried!)), whilst watching the herons and other birds going about their morning routines…
We are lucky when we arrive at the next lock, not only because there is another boater with us. If you’re new to boating try and wait for another boat for the double locks, they are so much easier to manage and your boat doesn’t move around like a matchstick in a whirlpool. We had a lovely chat with a couple who have had their boat for a few years, swapping info about what we have done etc and where they have been. A CRT chap comes along and helps with the lock which is very handy as I chat to him about the best way to do the locks. We have done quite a few over the years but it’s always good to chat to the experts.
Lock done we head to the facilities which is being used so we loiter around in the winding hole ((a large area where you can turn your boat around as most canals are too narrow to do this)) but only for a few minutes as they are finishing and we don’t block any boats from turning. We turn around emptying the toilet, filling the water, emptying the bins in a record 15 mins and are back cruising again. We don’t head far and spot the perfect mooring which will do us for a couple of days as we raid Co-op – not literally, and pop to the chandlers for some new bits and bobs for the boat. It’s Christmas day every day for this boat!
On this journey, we pass Mercia Marina where we bought our boat and they kindly let us live for a few days as I couldn’t get time off my many jobs to move the boat back. We are now officially on ‘virgin waters’ and cannot wait to see what is ahead of us… the adventure continues but a few days of chilling are in order whilst we do a bit of faffing with the boat, I can get this blog up to date and work on my fantasy novel as my fans are demanding – you know who you are… I have a lovely couple of hours writing on the stern – this is exactly what i dreamed of doing when i was so stressed before we moved onto the boat.
We enjoy a chilled afternoon of faffing on the boat before some friend’s pop by in the evening to see the boat for the first time. This is after the gas alarm went off when we were cooking tea. The next day the fire alarm went off, they are really sensitive which I suppose is good. We have since mastered a meal without an alarm! Always something to do when on a boat but all sorted and a lamb had to be rescued out of the canal after it fell in leaning into drink – it was all well in the end and the farmer came to take it to the barn.
Another day’s adventuring done. Tomorrow we have to deal with rude canal users ((nice clickbait their Peachy)) I will try and add some photos but my phone has decided it’s run out of storage space so i cannot send them to my email to upload. Such is the life on the water with no proper internet.