Wednesday, 22 November 2017

Layering up

It's not cold living on the boat but I'm not one for wandering around in skimpy clothes and then having the heating roaring out.

I layer up when the weather turns cold.

Captain Hot Stuff asked me yesterday what I was wearing, the answer was two pairs of leggings, a vest, a tee shirt and an over top.

He said that the temperature would be dropping to three degrees at the weekend, I replied that I'd add an extra layer and wear four tops then.

We then had a chuckle when we realised that we had both used the names of 70's pop groups in our conversation.

Monday, 20 November 2017

Lazy slob

I've just spent over 12 hours in bed, I went to bed before 8 last night and got up just after 8 this morning.

I babysat on Thursday night for DD2, she got home by 10:30 and it took me 15 minutes to drive home. Unfortunately the Muppet who locked the marina gates made such a mess of it with the chains almost plaited together that there wasn't room to to get the key in padlock!
It took me 45 minutes to unlock the damn thing.

So it was gone midnight by the time I got to bed and I'd been up since 4:30.

Saturday night I met up with my two sons and their partners, we went for an Indian meal and had a great time.

This time the gate wasn't even closed never mind locked so I did it myself once I was on the marina.

Saturday, 18 November 2017

Ch ch changes

My beloveds shifts are a complete mystery to me, I know the theory behind them. There are four members of staff, three of them work a three shift system of Earlies, Days & Lates, with the person on the day shift working on Saturday and not working on the Monday that week. The 4th member has different duties and is supposed to provide holiday and illness cover for the other three.

All this is complicated by the times for the late shift changing throughout the week, the finish time varies from 8pm to 10pm depending on outside booking and inschool events, the start time obviously varies to accommodate the finishing times.

Further problems arise as there are certain weekly duties that need all three of the team to attend. For example the weekly fire alarm test, this requires 2 people to be in each of three places so requires 6 people!

There are always moans from those higher up the food chain about the amount of overtime paid to the premises team and announcement made that 'steps will be taken to reduce the overtime bill'.

The latest idea is they should work until midnight and therefore start later, as you can imagine that idea in extremely unpopular.

Thursday, 16 November 2017

Oh the joys of a peaceful retirement

I was awake at 4:30 so I wrote some emails regarding the engine on our boat. It's a Volkswagen so we have trouble tracking down parts for it.
I got out of bed at 5, made porridge and a cuppa for both of us,  made a lunch up for hubby and then took him to work for 6:30.

I put fuel in the car and bought some breakfast stuff for dgd who is staying tomorrow night.

I got back to the boat by 7:30, emptied the ash pan, set the washing machine going, topped up the fire and then filled the coal bucket.

I then went and cleaned a boat on a nearby jetty, including the windows inside and out.

I came home had a cuppa and set off to pay the fees for a club I've joined, that took a couple of hours including driving time.

The I answered more emails and then did another boat clean, I finished the 2nd boat clean by 2:15, by then it was time to collect my beloved from work.

Got back to the boat at 3:30 only to find 3 bonfires burning with smoke and ash blowing everywhere, the freshly washed windows are now filthy and I'll have to clean them again tomorrow.

There is a meat pie made by my lovely son in law cooking, mash and peas will be served with it, as soon as we've eaten and cleared away I shall set off to DD2's to babysit!!

Wednesday, 15 November 2017


Since the multi fuel stove is lit 24/7 it would be a waste to just to use it for heating.
I have a cast iron casserole and have recently bought a ridge monkey.
I'm basing the bulk of our meals around using these.
At the weekend I did a pot roast, a piece of brisket. 
Yesterday I did chicken in a piripiri sauce with rice, both cooked on the stove.
Today it was spaghetti bolognese, I cooked the pasta on the hob, the bolognese sauce on the stove and the garlic bread in the ridge monkey.

Monday, 13 November 2017

I'm bunged up

I'm suffering from stitchers block, I typed sewers block to start with but then realised that might be misconstrued.
I'm trying to make bungs to block the port holes but I'm struggling a bit, I will persevere after I've written this post.

We went to a quiz night on Friday at school, I like quiz nights but got fed up with the ones in the pub when everybody was googling the answers.

We came 8th, that wasn't too bad, we would have done better with fewer team members as one got very drunk and another was adamant that A Tale of Two Cities was written by Shakespeare.

Saturday, 11 November 2017

Families, who'd have em!

It's the anniversary of my mother-in-law's death.

Without her restraining influence FIL has hit the bottle, big time and he isn't a pleasant drunk, he is lecherous, obnoxious, paranoid and argumentative, an all round arsehole.

BIL2 phoned last night, he was also drunk as usual.

BIL3 phoned, sober as always he and hubby had a nice chat, winged about the drunks, reminisced about good times with their mum.

Roll on December!

Wednesday, 8 November 2017

Side hustles

Still worrying about money and wondering what else I can do to make some extra pennies.

My crochet skills are improving so I'm wondering about trying to sell some of the blankets I make.

Though where to sell them is also a problem, Etsy is huge, so many people already selling on there.
I may try Facebay, there is nothing to lose is there.

I do a few surveys but I'm the wrong age/gender for most of them so I've earned about 20p in the last 6 months.

I still follow MFin3 and I'm glad to see her posting regularly again, maybe there will be some suggestions there.

Also a lot of the things I used to do to save money such as stocking up on reduced food and batch cooking for the month ahead are no longer viable in such a small space.

I have my sewing machine out and today I made a door curtain and some draught excluder snakes to help keep the boat warm.

Captain Hot Stuff's shifts are all over the place at the moment, he's covering for a colleague who isn't well.
I'm losing track and have to ask him as we are going to bed 'What time are you starting tomorrow' I know he is on the late shift, but the times are different each day.

Monday, 6 November 2017

I don't wanna talk about it

Captain Hot Stuff doesn't snore whereas I snore like a watchdog, nor does he thrash around awake or asleep.

What he does do however is talk, in fact he has a tendency to ask questions and if I get the answer wrong he wakes up with a start.

When he was roofing he would ask how many tile bundles were needed, I soon learned that the best answer was either 7 or 9. These being the most likely amount needed for the size project he worked on after his accident

Before his accident he did industrial roofing, but I didn't know him then.

When he was doing building work the questions were more varied but I could usually provide an appropriate answer.

A few days ago he announced at 3am that I should be getting a tax rebate and wanted to know if I was going to apply for it. I agreed that I would and he slept on peacefully.

The other thing he does in his sleep is attempt to play Hide the Sausage. I know he is asleep because his approach is different when he's awake.

The only problem with this is that if he does find somewhere to hide it he immediately wakes up, apologises, turns over and goes back to sleep!

Just finished, just started.

I have just finished this book and this blanket

I have just started this book and this blanket.

My tiny fridge freezer

 It's amazing just how much I can fit in it.

Friday, 3 November 2017

Helping out

Wednesday and Thursday we helped out DD2, she was offered two extra days work but needed childcare to manage it. We had 3yo dgd both days and collected the other 2 from school.

This morning it was DD1's turn, she needed a lift to the vets as her hubby had their car.

We decided to go away for the weekend as CHS has until Monday off, there is of course no need to pack when we go away, we simply sail away.

We came across the local fuel boat on our travels so we stocked up on coal and diesel, it much cheaper than buying from the local marinas.

It's now 6:30, we've just eaten a casserole that I cooked on top of our squirrel stove and the boat is toasty warm.

I shall crochet for a few hours and then go to bed and read, I'm reading Murder on the Oxford Canal by Faith Martin.

I'm hoping by next week to start adding more photos to my blog, I'm currently using my kindle fire and it won't let me load pics.

I should be back on my laptop next week and then I will be able to add pics.

Tuesday, 31 October 2017

Stunned and amazed

I was stunned and amazed by the send off I received upon my retirement.

I was asked if I'd like to go out for a meal and almost 20 people turned up.

I was given so many gifts, one of which was large plant this has been re-gifted to DD and now stands in her garden.

I was also given gifts from the kitchen staff and the cleaners, people I didn't do copying for.

Saturday, 28 October 2017

Missing in action

I've been missing in action for most of the week as my mifi stopped working.

Of course it took eleventy billion phone calls to sort it out.

Then when Three did agree to send a new unit they would only notify me of the delivery time via email.

Can you see the problem here, I couldn't get email as my mifi wasn't working.

They send out the '1 hour delivery slot info' any time up until 11am.

I know there are places that provide free WiFi including my bank, Nationwide but there is a limit to how long I could spend lurking around and I really didn't want to spend hours in a coffee shop or pub as I had boats to clean and grand children to entertain.

Saturday, 21 October 2017

Back to basics

Last week CHS came shopping with me, he spent £91 in the supermarket and I still had to do two top up shops for milk and veg.

Yesterday I shopped alone, I spent £24, hopefully I will not need any top up shops as I have lots of veg and milk in.

Next weeks meal plan.

In no particular order.
Roast turkey, turkey, ham and mushroom pie, Turkey and noodles, spaghetti bolognese, fish pie, pork chops, chicken and ribs.

Thursday, 19 October 2017

I'm freeeeeeee!

Well that's it, it's all done and dusted. I'm officially retired.

I came home laden with gifts, chocolates and gift vouchers.

The head made a nice farewell speech, my line manager declined to speak.

Tonight I'm going out for a celebratory meal.

Wednesday, 18 October 2017


I get these lumps, just small ones about the size of a pimple and mostly on my face. They are irritating and unsightly but that is all. After a few months they dry up enough to be removed usually with a scalpel.
I currently have on on the side of my nose and I was getting tired of it, so out came the medi wipes, mirror and scalpel.
Oh bugger, it popped but then it bled and bled and bled.
And then it stopped, there is no scab, no soreness, nothing at all.


I have joined the U3A, there is one a few miles away.

I shall start with quilting and circle dancing.

I'll let you know how I get on.

Monday, 16 October 2017

Are you lonesome tonight.

I think my only real concern about retirement is that I will become lonely and isolated.
I don't know many people on the Marina and there are very few women here anyway.
CHS will, I know, come home each evening, rant about work until the evening meal is ready, he will then fall asleep in the chair until it is time for bed.
I'm struggling to find any clubs or activities to join in with that a are within my budget.
Time will tell.

Sunday, 15 October 2017

So I went to the laundrette

I wanted to establish the time and costs involved, from although dd2 has offered to do washing and drying for my when I spend time with dgd9, I want to pay her for doing it.
Dgd9  is three years old but the 9th grandchild.

So I went into the laundrette and bade the attendant, who was stood behind the counter a cheery hello, she merely grunted  in reply.

I read the instructions and started a wash going, I went to buy a loaf of bread whilst the wash was on.

I returned to the laundrette and once the machine had finished it's watery tango I emptied the washing into the dryer and sat with my crochet waiting.

After a few minutes a very flash Audi parked on the double yellow lines out side the laundrette and three people entered.

There was a woman in her 40's, her daughter who was in her 20's and a toddler.

The laundrette attendant immediately came out from behind the counter and stood with her arms folded.

The older of the two women came over and started to ask me about my crochet. She had no discernible accent but her speech had a very unusual cadence. I recognised it immediately.

After about half an hour I went to remove my bedding from the tumble dryer and left the towels in to continue drying.

Out of the corner of my eye I noticed the younger women walking over to sit beside my bag that I had left by the bench. I'm sure she rifled through it whilst my back was turned. I didn't say anything as my phone and purse were in my pockets, all that was in my bag was my crochet, a loaf of wholemeal bread and some empty carrier bags.

I'm glad my daughter has offered to do my washing for me, I don't want to have to use the laundrette again.

In case you are wondering the wash cost £4 for a twenty minute wash and the dryer was also £4 for an hour's drying, plus £1 to park. It could have proved a lot more expensive if I hadn't recognised the didicoy patois!

Friday, 13 October 2017

It's the final countdown.

One more week before I retire and it's a four day week at that.

It hasn't sunk in yet and probably won't for a few weeks as it will just be like a normal school holiday.

Even though I gave around 4 months notice my job was only advertised on Tuesday and the closing date is next Tuesday.

Two boats to clean next week, it will be easier not having to fit them in around work.

Tuesday, 10 October 2017

New clock

I started work at 7:30 today, CHS is on the late shift so arrived at 12.

He came to find me, he wasn't happy about the new clock I'd bought and hung on the wall.

He's not keen on the modern design, it has no numbers on it and no hands.

How, he asked, is he supposed to tell the time on it.

I kindly explained that it was in fact my new weighing scales!

Small and flat, black with a silver disk in the middle and a hole in the back so they can by hung on the wall when not in use.

Saturday, 7 October 2017

Hither and thither

Thank you for all the comments I'm glad I gave you all a laugh.

Someone asked about my car, it is a Nissan Note, with silly little wheels, I like the car though apart from the wheels.

So today CHS had to work, but not until 8am so it was a leisurely start to the day. Whilst at work he chopped up a  broken pallet so now we have a nice pile of kindling.

I drove to the village centre and went to the bakers and butcher's once I'd dropped him off, I bought some rolls, ham and bacon.

I then drove into town to the hardware shop  to buy some nails, from there it was back to the village to collect a prescription and then to the chemist to get the prescription filled.

Back then to work to drop off the ham rolls for CHS for lunch, by the time I returned to the boat it was 10:30.

I collected my cleaning stuff and went to clean a boat, no joy, the padlock had been changed but not the key.

So I went to see the Marina manager to see if he had a key, but no luck.

I gave the Marina manager a bottle of my homemade blackberry vodka and he told me where I could pick some sloes!

Woohoo, I picked lot, then on the way to collect CHS from work I bought a couple of bottles of gin, there will be sole gin for Christmas.

Sloe gin, bloody tablet, even though I've added sloe to the dictionary it still reverts to sole or slope!!

Friday, 6 October 2017

Epic fail

As my friend Sybil would say.
Today started well albeit very early.
I made porridge at 5am for CHS and I to take to work.

CHS also had ham sandwiches and I had prawn salad left over from last night.
We arrived at work at 6:30, CHS started to unlock the building I went to my room to start work.

At about 8am I decided I would eat my porridge, I took it to the Staffroom and put it in the microwave, I then went to the toilet.

I returned to the Staffroom just as the microwave pinged.
I took out my tub of porridge, lifted the lid and there in the tub was some very well cooked prawn salad!

Sunday, 1 October 2017

Busy weekend

I have tried to photograph the cats but they either ran away or headbutt my phone so I gave up.

Saturday morning I went to get two new tyres for my car, ouch, £211, ouch ouch.

Whilst they were being fitted I walked to Ds's house to feed the cats then walked back to collect my car. I then filled the car with petrol and stopped at the bakers to buy some soft rolls for lunch.

I returned home and cleaned the boat then we went shopping to restock the fridge and freezer. I spend twice as much when CHS comes with me but he always pays the bill so it doesn't matter.

At 5 I returned to Ds's to feed the cats for the final time. From there I went to dd2's and babysat, I refereed the children for a couple of hours until they went to bed I was there until midnight. While I was there dd1 phoned to ask if I could babysit for her at lunch time today.

Despite not getting to bed until 1ish  I was up before 7, we wanted to watch the Malaysian Grand Prix.

At 10:30 I set off for dd1's where I wrangled children until 2:30. I returned home and cooked Sunday lunch but with lamb steaks instead of a joint.  Dd1's OH had made a delicious chocolate cake (he is a chef) he gave me a couple of slices to bring home, we had it for pudding.

I'm now sitting in front on my stove and I'll go to bed early tonight.

Wednesday, 27 September 2017


So this week I am practising the art of cat herding.
It is not for the faint of heart!

My son and his gf have gone on holiday for a week and asked me if I would feed their cats for them.

They have three, a blue point Korat called Ellie, a huge and very nervous ginger tom called Koshka and the newest member a Bengal called Polly. They are all rescue cats, all very friendly without a scrap of malice between them.

The only problem is that the newest family member, the Bengal is terribly greedy, probably because she has been hungry in the past.

The first morning I went round Polly was waiting at the door for me despite it being just after 6am.

I put three bowls of food down on the kitchen floor but by the time the other two cats had made it into the kitchen Polly had cleared all three bowls of food.

I have now worked out a system where I feed Polly first, then let her out in the garden and then put food down for the other two cats.

Once they leave their food all bets are off and Polly clears the other bowls.

There is a large bowl of dry food available but Polly seems disinterested in this.

Once they have all eaten they all come for cuddles, apart from Koshka, he stands on the stairs with his back to me mewing pitifully until I go to him and stroke him.

Saturday, 23 September 2017

A low spend week ahead.

Thanks for all the reassurance and suggestions, I'm sure it will be fine, I'm just getting panicky as retirement draws near.

I won't be getting a lie in though in the mornings as I will still be taking CHS to work.

I've checked the freezer and made a meal plan for next week. We have roast chicken tomorrow then in no particular order spaghetti Bolognese, chicken curry, pork steak, sausage and mash and then steak and chips on Friday. I have all this in the fridge and freezer so I don't need much shopping. I shall make double portions of the spaghetti, curry and sausage and mash and they will do for our lunches, we will have cheese sarnies a couple of times as I have bread and cheese in too.

I need to make some sausage rolls and chocolate brownies for our Macmillan fund raiser at work so I'll need to buy some ingredients for those.

Once it gets really cold and we have the stove on all the time I'm planning on using the top to cook my morning porridge over night and cooking some one pot meals on it to save on gas. I already keep the kettle on it so it shortens the boil time for our morning cuppa.

Thursday, 21 September 2017

What am I going to do?

This time next month I'll be a lady of leisure.
I'm really not sure how I will fill my days.
I have a few hours paid work each week, but only a few.
I shall not be able to afford to be a lady wot lunches.
I'm not a fan of TV and even if I was the signal is sporadic, sometimes BBC 2 is the only watchable channel.
I've arranged to have Dgd 3 on a Thursday morning for a couple of hours and once a fortnight I shall go to the laundrette to wash the bedding and big towels. 
I change the bedding weekly but it will take 2 weeks worth to fill a machine.
I will still wash and dry clothing on the boat.
So what else will I do, I will have to wait and see what turns up.

Wednesday, 20 September 2017

More spending

The new shower has finally been fitted in the house, much to my tenants joy. £320 for shower and fitting.
£80 to have the boiler serviced.

We have received our new bus passes, they last until 2021 so that is a small saving.

Saturday, 16 September 2017

Spending money

Despite stocking up last week when we finally got a working fridgefreezer, I still spent nearly £40 today on food for next week, much more than I should for just the two of us, but less than I've been spending whilst shopping every other day.

I bought a small piece of lamb for Sunday lunch, I shall turn the leftovers into a casserole.

I also bought some 2 chicken pieces, 2  burgers, 4 potatoes, broccoli, and cabbage, I have mushrooms and onions left from last week. I forgot to buy carrots but I'll get them on Monday. We ate the burgers today in soft rolls.

The plan is to make some portions of lamb casserole and chicken curry for CHS to take to work next week. He's working until 10pm each night so he'd prefer to eat at work.

I will make a vegetarian curry for my lunches next week and use up some of the tins from the cupboard.

More downs than ups

It's been a week of ups and downs.

Work is busy, I knew it would be, some people are really worried about me leaving, they are not sure how they will cope.

We have the usual intake of new students and staff, one brand new year 7 managed to get sanctioned on his very first day! It doesn't bode well for the rest of his time at school.

Some of the new staff are nice, one even commented on how nice and calm it was in my department as his previous experiences had left him expecting chaos and bad temper. Some are less so, especially the trainees who think the term 'support staff' means servant.

CHS was told on Thursday that he was expected to extend his shift today, he refused, we have plans.
We are expected to change our plans at the drop of a hat even though those higher up the food chain have known about this for almost 3 weeks.

We are both annoyed at the lack of notice, a colleague suggested it was just an oversight that more notice was not given.
I replied that once, maybe twice could be seen as an oversight, but that as no reasonable notice is ever provided, it is an insult. The support staff are not seen as being valuable enough to have their plans and arrangements taken into consideration.

Wednesday, 13 September 2017

Bashed and battered, shaken and rattled.

Not a peaceful night last night, the wind blew mightily for most of the night.

We boinged against the jetty a few times and got generally bounced and rocked around throughout the night. CHS got up at one point to close the windows as they were rattling so.

We lost our chimney top, but we have lost a few over time, 3 or 4 at least, I'll order a new one tomorrow.

We fared better than some people on the marina, a lot if satellite dishes were hanging over the edges of the boats. We don't have a dish so we didn't have that problem.

There was also a tree down but it didn't do any damage fortunately.

Sunday, 10 September 2017

There may be trouble ahead

There is at least one grumpy boater on the Marina. This boater has complained about everyone and everything on the marina.

Eventually, in desperation he was moved to the end of an otherwise empty jetty.

It seem to work and there were no more complaints.

But now there is a problem looming, there are 12 new boats arriving, there will be no more spaces free, hey ho, if he complains about me he'll get short shrift.

Thursday, 7 September 2017

Peeling fingers and a blocked wee pole

I'm a bit tired at the moment, I'm doing two jobs.
I'm still doing my school job and I'm boat cleaning when I get home each day.
Because I'm tired the old grey cells aren't working to capacity, so when I noticed that the skin was peeling off that's of my fingers I was a little disconcerted. Eventually I realised it was the fingers that I scalded a while ago, the skin had been dry and rough and eventually peeled off.

When Captain Hot Stuff announced yesterday morning that his wee poles were blocked I immediately assumed a trip to the Dr's was on the cards and offered to make him an appointment. After a few minutes of confused and confusing conversation I ascertained that what he actually said was ' The weep holes are blocked'.
Weep holes are small holes in the window fittings, they get filled with moss and need cleaning out occasionally. Much less painful than blocked wee poles I'm sure.

Sunday, 3 September 2017

Making money, spending money

I'm now have some 'one off' boat cleans booked for next week on top of my regular bookings, so there is a trickle of money coming in.
Next month will be my final pay packet and it will be only about £300 so I need to keep building my customer base.

We have ordered a new fridge/freezer £169. We finally found somewhere that had one in stock that we could look at and measure.
We've also bought a new gangplank that doubles as a rescue ladder and a brollymate.
It fits on the tiller and will hold a brolly or a small whirly washing line.

We lit the stove today as it's rained all day and was pretty chilly. The cost of having the stove lit was slightly  offset by using it to make lunch. I opened 2 tins of soup and stood them on top of the stove. I had pea and ham, CHS had mushroom. The soups  were piping hot in about 20 minutes, this also cut down on the washing up as there were no pans to wash.

I've got a rash

I was reading on the MSE  forum recently that to get a good night's sleep it's best to sleep naked.
Someone said she'd tried it but got very little sleep because her husband thought it was an invitation and was all over her like a rash.
I always sleep naked!

Cleaning the boat means I spend a lot of time on my knees, CHS always sees this as an invitation!

Yesterday we went to a colleagues 60th birthday party, I wore a dress for the first time in 6 weeks, as I was wearing heels I also wore sheer black hold ups, CHS love's hold ups.
We were a little late to the party, like I said I have a rash, but I like it!

Wednesday, 30 August 2017

Spot the difference

I thought I'd write a post about the difference between cleaning a house and cleaning a boat.

You may think that there would be no difference apart from size but in fact there are quite a few differences.

For one thing there is no hot water and unless I want to go through all the palaver of finding the stopcock there is no running water. I manage with buckets of cold water, changed frequently. I usually take my own bucket having recently come unstuck using the boat owners bucket only to find it had a hole in it!

I take my own cleaning caddy with me too, most people keep enough equipment on board but there is nothing worse than trying to clean anything with one grubby jiffy cloth  and the last dribble of cleaner in the bottle.
I use microfiber clothes, I have a couple of dozen and I sling them in the washing machine when I get home. I have bicarb, white vinegar and Astonish in my caddy too along with a paint brush and toothbrush to get into all the crevices. Best of all is my extending microfiber duster, great for removing cobwebs and mine fits up into the mushroom vents.

There is also unlikely to be any electric, so no running the vacuum over the carpets. It's hands and knees with a stiff brush to get the carpets clean. I take my own stiff brush and finish off with a damp microfiber cloth.

Look look! Where where!

We have decided to buy a new fridge but it is difficult to find one to fit in the available space.

CHS wants to go and LOOK at them before we decide which we want to buy.

Ok in theory but actually there are not many places where you can look.

There is Currys but last time we bought something from them the delivery was a nightmare, the cooker was a fortnight late and badly damaged.

There is John Lewis, but that means visiting the town centre, something we avoid at all costs.

CHS suggested Iceland, saying that we could then visit Wickes as it's next door.
Iceland don't sell freezers any more and Wickes moved about 2 years ago.

Monday, 28 August 2017

Bit of a gap

It's been a while since I last blogged, it's been busy here with friends and grandchildren visiting.

I've done a couple of boat cleans so a little extra in homecoming in.

I also managed to scald my left hand quite badly and as I'm left-handed it proved quite inconvenient.

I did it at around 5pm and sat with my hand in cold water until almost 11, fortunately it didn't blister but it was very sore for  a few days.

We went for a public today, we nearly didn't stay as there were four very badly behaved children there, running around, screaming and shaking salt and pepper all over the floor. Their doting parents watched them and smiled fondly, I was very tempted to use my death stare, but fortunately they left the pub before long.

Monday, 21 August 2017

A busy day and a group of plonkers.

We had a lot of rain last night so before we could set off for work we had to slacken off the ropes a bit as the boat was beginning to tilt.
It means there is a bigger step down to the jetty when the water level rises.

I dropped CHS at work at 6:30 as he is on the early shift, from there I went to Tesco, I wanted 2 black short sleeved t-shirt for cleaning in, a small washing basket (I bought a lidded bin) this will stand in the shower when we aren't using it. I also bought new razor blades, some stationery for my new job (a diary and a notebook) lunch for CHS and some milk. Then on to Waitrose to get some olives that they didn't have in Tesco.

From there I went to DD2's to collect Eileen and Suzy, we went to the Range where they took an hour to decide what they wanted, I didn't need them to rush, they had such fun spending the money I gave them. Eileen chose some colouring books, Suzy chose a purple poodle. I also bought some food colouring and cake sprinkles that DD2 wanted. We then dropped CHS's lunch in to him and he admired the items they had chosen, then we went on to McDonald's.

Ye gods, that was a riot. Eileen wanted a chicken nugget kids meal and no drink, Suzy wanted the same meal but with a drink, I got them both a fruitshoot just in case, I bought myself a milkshake.

We settled at a table whereupon Eileen decided she wasn't hungry  but was very thirsty, so she drank both fruitshoots, Suzy ate both meals and drank my milkshake!

Meanwhile a group had gathered at the table directly behind us, 6 men and 2 women all in business suits. They had laptops, brochures and folders full of paper.

Now I've read online about how 'it's not necessary to have an office to run a business' and 'just arrange to hold your meetings in a coffee shop'. Ok, fair enough, but McDonald's? In the school holiday, how stupid!

My grandchildren were very well behaved but both were chattering 19 to the dozen, the business meeting behind were not happy an tutted frequently.
Until I turned round, smiling sweetly and said,  'It is the school holidays you know, you haven't chosen the best meeting place'.

After we'd eaten Eileen wanted to go home and start on the colouring book I bought her, Suzy wanted to come back to the boat to feed the ducks.

I dropped Suzy home and then collected CHS, we came home and I cooked chicken breasts in tomato, olive and herb sauce.

I've filled in my new calendar and made notes of what I'm doing when, I've washed up, cleaned the windows and swept the floor. Now I'm putting my feet up.

Sunday, 20 August 2017

From little acorns

Another boater came over today, to ask if I'd clean their boat for them, we agreed terms and I have the keys, I start next week.

I also have 2 more boat cleaning jobs in the pipeline.
CHS is not best pleased, he think if I'm retiring I should sit around and do nothing, but I'm not good at that.

He also feels it's a bit degrading for me, but he wouldn't try to stop me, he values his life too much for that.

I said if it bothers him he can tell people I'm self employed!

 The owners provide all the cleaning equipment and consumables, I provide the elbow grease.

Somehow I don't think I will look this glamorous!

Saturday, 19 August 2017

Sometimes I fancy a threesome

I sit and fantasize about having two hunky men.
One of them being CHS of course.
I go quite weak at the knees just imagining it.
Oh the joy and excitement, two men at the same time.
One to drive the boat and one to work the locks.
I could just sit in the cratch and enjoy the scenery.

Friday, 18 August 2017

What a difference a day makes

We left sunny Sonning this morning and made our way to Tesco, I can't see me shopping in Tesco again though as this is the new mooring fee. £100, that's a bit steep.

We stocked up on a few things and then turned the boat around and headed along the Kennet and Avon.

We travelled through the Oracle without mishap but a few minutes later the heavens opened.
We had thunder, lightening torrential rain and hailstones.

We started to open the next lock, but had to stop, we couldn't see what we were doing.

We managed to reach Burghfield and we have moored up for the night and lit the fire.

We both had a shower to warm up and had a quick drink in the Cunning Man and then returned to the boat.

I cooked lamb chops, new potatoes, broccoli, cabbage and carrots.

Then it was feet up and kindled out.

Uri Geller

So here we are in sunny Sonning, the land belongs to Uri Geller, it's £10 to moor overnight and the money goes to charity.

Wednesday, 16 August 2017

Such excitement

 The view from the side hatch today
Is it a house or a fort!

What an  exciting day it's been today!
We left Cooham just after 10 this morning and headed back to Marlow as I wanted to have a look in the charity shops for a couple of summer tops.

We arrived at Marlow Lock Moorings about midday, the moorings adjoin a small park and the path through the park leads eventually to Marlow High Street.

We went for a walk along the High Street, there are 5 or 6 charity shops there, so I was spoilt for choice.
We eventually arrived back at the boat and I made lunch, hot dogs in finger rolls.
Just as we finished lunch when a 70ft narrowboat hoves into view, they had hoped to moor above the lock but there was no room and they needed to get some shopping.
We invited them to breast up alongside us which they did.

No sooner had they tied up and left their boat than a man in a hi-vis jacket arrived to tell us that the park was being fenced off in 5 minutes and there would be no access for a few days whilst flood relief work was carried out.

We explained that there were 6 boats on the mooring and that people would need to get back to their boats.

Hi-vis man said they had 5 minutes to return to their boats as the park would be fenced off. He insisted that there were plenty of signs and that we and the other boaters should have read said signs. CHS asked him to point out the signs as there were none on the moorings, he walked to the park entrance with CHS and triumphantly pointed to the sign. which read 'Flood Relief work starting here this summer' Well that was really helpful, no dates and nowhere did it say that the park was to be closed.

I phoned the company that own the mooring but they couldn't help, I then phoned the Environment Agency, who tried to help but it is such a huge body they couldn't find out who I needed to speak to. They did eventually arrange for the lock keeper to come and see me, but he didn't arrive.

CHS, in the mean time was still talking to the contractors who were due to close off the park and he managed to persuade them to leave the park open until 6am tomorrow morning

After that, who knows, we understand that the work need to be done, but signage needs to be in place. Many people live aboard as we do and how can they just be refused access to their home.

Tuesday, 15 August 2017

Onwards and back

Yesterday we had lunch here at the Bounty Pub at Cockmarsh, it's a fascinating place. We had sausage and onion baguette for CHS, bacon and brie toastie for me. 

 Then we moved on through another lock to here, we moored on our own private island.
This was the view from where we were moored.

 And this is where we were at Cliveden.
Today we have moved back towards our home mooring. We are at Bell Rope Walk in Cookham, free mooring from 10 - 2 and only £6 for an overnight stay.
We walked through Cookham to the Station where there is a shop, we bought a couple of demi baguettes and some smoked mackerel  which we had for lunch.
CHS treated me to an ice cream from the van that parks near the flood relief plain and we stopped at the Crown for a quick drink, then back to the boat for lunch. The pic above is of the opposite bank, what a beautiful view.

Get out the scissors

I bought a new top, it's patterned cheesecloth, it makes me look like an aging hippy but I like it.
Even when I bought it I wasn't sure about the sleeves, they were a bit long and floaty.
I wore the top today for the first time and the sleeves lasted through just one lock, then out came the scissors and I cut the floaty bits off just below the elbow.
Once we moored up I got out my needle and thread and  neatened the raw edges by hemming them.

I bought the top because I realised I only had 2 short sleeved t-shirts to my name.

Monday, 14 August 2017

On the move.

We set off from Aldermaston on Friday just after lunch.
We had Dgs with us, he is 13 and very useful helping with the locks. We moored at The Cunning Man pub, had a meal there and stayed over night.
In the morning our son in law collected Dgs and dropped off the Dgd who hadn't been on a boat trip yet.
We went through the Oracle shopping center and along the Kennet and Avon then on to the Thames at Caversham.
We moored at Tesco, did some shopping and Dgs was collected by her dad.
We then moved on to Sonning where we paid £10 to moor for the night.
Today we stopped at Henley for lunch, I made a ploughmans for us.
We have now moved on to Marlow where we have found a quiet mooring for the night.
We find it best to moor up by 4 or 5 o'clock otherwise it can turn in to a bit of a scramble to find somewhere.

Sunday, 6 August 2017

New blinds

New kitchen blinds fitted today by CHS.
Now both windows are the same instead of the previous mismatch.
The blinds are also much safer than the faded curtains that were there
Who in their right mind hangs curtains above a gas hob!

Friday, 4 August 2017

Money in, money out

Money in.
I received a refund from British Gas from when I moved out of my house, £155.
I received a pay rise at work, backdated for four months £7, not per month, for the entire 4 months!

Money out.
There was a problem with the central heating, £184.

Learning to fly

This little chap crash landed on to the boat behind me yesterday.

Sorry about the appalling pics but I couldn't get any closer for fear of scaring him.
He sat there for some time chirping away whilst Mum & Dad kept flying past shouting encouragement.
Eventually the wind picked up and became very blustery, at this point I'm sure Mum & Dad shouted 'Just spread your bloody wings and jump'
Well he did and he took off, flying on his side to start with, but eventually he got the hang of it, straightened up and off he went.

Tuesday, 1 August 2017


Probably the last baby blanket I will make for a colleague as I am retiring in October.

Monday, 31 July 2017

Just a thought.

I received a text message today from someone I know announcing her engagement to the man she lives with.

I went to buy her a card, whilst browsing I did wonder why they don't do cards that say.

Congratulations on your engagement, at least now you won't spoil another couple!!

Cynical? Moi? Never!!

My beloved is a trusting little soul, he thinks he's cynical and suspicious but he isn't, not at all.

We are gradually meeting other boaters on the marina, especially CHS as he is usually working on the out side of the boat, I'm usually inside.

A nearby boater is being done up, it's a wreck, but the owner claims he wanted a project to work on.

He came over one afternoon to tell us all about the boats history, and his.

He invited CHS over to see his boat the next day, 'He seems like a nice bloke' said CHS. 'Yes' I replied 'But I think he's looking for free labour to help him do up his boat'. 'Surely not' said CHS.

The following day CHS went to see the boat, forewarned was forearmed, sure enough help was sought. Now CHS is always willing to help people with something quick, but this is a 10 year project and the owner is looking for a regular commitment every weekend.

I just cannot help being suspicious of everybody's motives.