The towpath where we are moored this week is hardly used and is consequently getting quite overgrown. We usually like it when it’s like that but it’s a pain for Karen when she walks to the car in her work clothes as she has to duck and dive to stop them getting torn.
Towpath is a bit overgrown for going to work
I spent a couple of hours or so on Wednesday cutting back the hedgerow to make Karen’s life easier. A couple of passing boaters assumed I was in the ramblers’ association – I couldn’t be bothered to dissuade them of it.
|Neatly trimmed hedgerow - reduced chance of toppling in|
At six o’clock on Wednesday morning when Karen was getting into the car she saw a guy walking along the towpath and onto the road. She thought she recognised him so stopped; it turned out to be a colleague of hers whose girlfriend lives on a boat. His girlfriend is currently cruising in the area so he is living with her whilst he is close to work.
I got chatting to a guy who was painting his boat and he recounted a story that happened to him when he had taken time out to have a walk around the village of Flecknoe. I may have mentioned before that Flecknoe is high up on our list of villages that could be our potential, what we call, “Resting place”. Anyway, this guy was approached by a couple of women in the village to see if he was lost – basically they thought he looked dodgy and wondered why he was walking around the village in his painting gear. I was a bit shocked that I had never been stopped but I suppose I always have a dog so don’t look so suspicious.
As it was Wednesday, we went up to the pub in the village for our cheeky midweek evening drink. It’s a lovely old pub and, as with many in this area, has a room for ‘cheeses’ or indoor skittles (the sort that you throw round cheeses at). It has a beautiful garden and ramblers/patrons are allowed to eat their own food in the garden provided they buy drinks at the bar – quite sweet really. Anyway, I was telling Karen the story of John being accosted and a chap at the bar overheard and explained that there is a village WhatsApp group and they contact each other when anything suspicious arises; so he knew all about the story of John the boat painter.
|Cheeses in the games room|
There was a long discussion on the Narrowboat Users Group (on FaceBook) on Thursday about how to keep brass from tarnishing and bringing it back to new when it has tarnished. Our mushroom vents are brass but we painted them to avoid the issue of keeping them polished. I added this fact to the conversation but most people were too serious about methods of brass cleaning – fortunately some people were less serious and liked my post.. In fact we will paint the mushroom vents on the new boat when it’s delivered – sacrilege to some people , we know.
|One of our mushrooms|
Before I finish I’ll tell you about another conversation we had with the WhatsApp man in the pub. We were talking about how quiet and attractive the village is and I mentioned that it’s the sort of place we could retire to. He puffed his chest out and explained that it’s a very expensive place to live. I couldn’t help but tell him that it would be OK as we come from the South.
The painting and fit out of Chalkhill Blue II is coming on well. The design we have come up with is based on a reverse layout (bedroom at the front, kitchen at the rear). The majority of boats are built the other way round as that is more suited for holiday cruising. As we are liveaboards we know exactly what we want and believe the reverse layout is more suited to our way of life. Here are some pictures showing the latest progress.
|Looking into the bedroom from the front deck|
|Looking into our bedroom - double wardrobe to the right – luxury as Karen only has a small hanging cupboard at present|
|Single wardrobe to the left (no doubt that will be Karen’s overflow wardrobe)|
|The door to the left leads from the bedroom to a full width bathroom. Currently our bathroom is off the corridor so is really small.|
|The lounge looking down to the front of the boat. The door on the left leads into the bathroom with our bedroom the other side.|
|Looking from the dinette into the kitchen and the stern deck|
|The front - gas bottles will be stored in the hatch at the front. We will also have a cratch fitted like we currently have so that we can continue o grow our own herbs, chillis, tomatoes etc.|