Friday 1 December 2023

11 years of ownership

Poor Percy is sitting patiently waiting on a frozen Shroppie. In years past when living aboard with lovely much missed Leia Percy was a warm haven in a cold frozen landscape. Life moves on and we are in a cold frozen landscape in the moorlands of Staffordshire, albeit in a warm cottage . Life would be boring if it was the same all the time.

So as  the blog says we've owned Percy for 11 years. I remember collecting Percy from Tony and his wistful watching expression as I chugged away with his pride and joy. That trip was a challenge with frozen canals only being saved by Callisto the coal boat who broke the ice for us as we followed through Nuneaton.  Rachel and son no2 Callum came to help me get Percy back to Fradley. 

I look back and reflect on how active I was and how ambitious I was also, and I was still working full on ... no retirement on the horizon in 2012 ! We had two boats when Percy came back so still had to get all the stuff moved across and Waterlily cleaned and polished ready for brokerage.

I should look back at photos more ..... another blog about that soon

Final photo of no 1 son Tom and his now wife Courtney with Leia on Percy at Fradley  all very very happy memories. 

Friday 24 November 2023

Is it just me ?

More of a reflective post but something for me to look back on at some point. 

The world is a shit place at the moment and getting shittier. Nature gets on with it despite us, humans are working really hard to destroy everything we are gifted with. It's at all levels as well. Politicians and world leaders (sic) seem ever more focussed on negativity than common progress. Our leaders are as ever taking those easy short term decisions based on popularity banking on anonymity and wealth in their future as their plans and promises dissolve in the wind of conflict and inherited challenges and change. 

* Some/most people I interact with I don't really like, I put up with them as I expect they put up with me. They can't say why they don't like me and I can't them because no doubt some of it would fall into the arena of the politically incorrect agenda police   - or rather anonymous outrage. It's a shame as maybe if we could be open and honest and listen to each other before reacting and take in the other persons views and maybe the influencing factors that affect and drive their personalities and behaviours I could be educated and could educate others to be better people. I'd like to be a better person. 

Then there is this country with its petty bureaucratic policies and procedures seemingly invented to hide poor performance and inability to act. It gets down to the individual trades who seem to have little or no pride in their interactions with customers certainly no pride in their work. I'm sure there are some out there who do go the extra inch or two but they are in my exposure few and far between. 

The common denominator in all of this is money and wealth. It drives all the actions and inactions that are counter productive to a safe world in all aspects peace, environmental, religious and well being in general of those that live on this lump of rock. 

I've no god or religion. I do often hope it is like how I imagined the  Greek Gods where we are just a game for them to explore actions and reactions. If it is at some point they may play their hand to turn our world from one that judges and categorises people by their ability to earn and what they own to a world where compassion and love is the currency of progress. They may have given us too much freedom to destroy our world and our communities..... shame the world was a nice place for part of my life. 

End of rant .... I can't see normal service being resumed, well not in my head - see above * 


Monday 9 October 2023

Hard work pub treat

We are supposed to be having the house decorated this last week. We came to the boat to be out of the way as we have not furniture downstairs. The decorators has been a bit hit and miss more miss than hit as he's gone down with some bug ! So we have stayed longer on the boat - no hardship as the weather has been globally warming hot for October. 

We winded last night after doing the majority of the boat. We also took a nice 4 mile walk up the canal last night also. 

Super shiny with that sacrificial gloss layer for the winter months as advised to us by John the boat painter (2015) 

But you will see that gap it back.... the silt that we shifted for the stern last time helped the bow but the stern was again helf by the silt when coming in the other way....

We set to this morning washing and polishing the starboard side now just about accessible. We showboated by washing the car while we had the stuff out. After welcoming our neighbours back with some rope help we set off ourselves to wind in Grub Street.

On the way back we decided to frequent the Anchor. A pub I've never been in despite cruising up and down the Shroppie many times and more than once with some seriously capable drinkers on board.... iirc it was the Wharf at Shebdon, now closed we went to as it did food. 

It didn't disappoint - a proper little jewel of a drinkers pub. My late Dad would have loved it, pulled pints no food no kids in the pub no music just people talking and drinking. The gents was classic old pub basically an outside urinal which is a painted trough. Strange what smells and images bring back memories of being at the pub with my dad.  

I took the obligatory pint of Wadworth 6x while Rachel had some old fashioned bottled Guinness. It was a lovely bonus afternoon in a canal pub with so much history and unspoilt by time long may it continue. 

On our return Chris and Dee from NB Naomi returned the favour and helped on the ropes and Percy came it much better than the last time !!

A bit of fishing showers some TV then pack up tomorrow for a return to chaos...but the sun will be shining and I'm not going to work !

Saturday 7 October 2023

Fed up of the top being too close to the bottom

We had a nice few days so far but boy am I sore tonight trying to get Percy to the bank on our mooring. I get that the dredging of the offside  ( if any dredging is being done at all ?) is no priority for C&RT but even getting close to the mid channel is a challenge as is winding and we are not deep draughted. 

I really do think I'm going to have to get some waders and get in with a spade to try and move some of the silt or we are going to have to visit every weekend and take Percy out wind and fight to get back in... better than the gym can't say it's cheaper however !

10th July we had a real fight ...

7th October  - Round two

We will leave Percy to settle in again.... the irony was we winded to clean and polish the port side from the bank !! More on that next post.

Thursday 5 October 2023

Wells to Wales

Last year it was Wells to Wells when our sons and daughters organised an old vicarage stay near Wells for us to enjoy as a family  - We alternate minimal Christmas gifts but a family holiday. Memories are so much more important than tat IMHO. 

This year it was our treat and our eldest grandsons wish was Wales with a hot tub and swimming pool  - no small wish list but some autumnal Googling and we were booked into the Old Dairy near Aberystwyth. 

Just a fine time doing the UK seaside thing for a change. I love a rock pool and went all in for the kids to get some crabs... then arcades swimming hot tubs ... you get the vibe. 

A picture or three is worth a thousand or many more words of my drivel...

Monday 2 October 2023

Sunshine mooring - outdoor works

All over the place with my blog right now. There is so much I want to add for my record but never seem to have the time or inclination - and I'm retired ! 

For my sins I take a lot of photos which helps me 'remember' and so it is the case with the last visit to Percy some 5 weeks ago on the 27th August. We've been resetting the mooring since our arrival and when I came back from my Wales passes motorcycle tour I stopped over and built the shed bringing the screws with me this time ! 

In another post I'll explain why we had another love seat but it needed painting so this trip was for that reason and also to get some solar on the mooring fixed off the boat to charge the Ecoflow... which is working very well ( on the boat as I type this ) and the Ecoflow came charged and has run the vacuum as well as got the fridge cold all at the same time as charging the batteries  - top kit. 

I got a 390w panel from City Plumbing for a ridiculous £85 which included delivery. They certainly have dropped in price recently which is good for all especially the diy'er. 

I'd brought wood from my sons old bathroom floor - another distraction from the boat to make a stand that can take the genny so if raining its protected. The genny can charge the Ecoflow so just over an hours running can give us a couple of days use.... better than running the genny for 100w demand  for three or four hours when we can run it at for an hour and put 1 kilowatt into the Ecoflow... it makes a lot of sense. 

So it got built and we painted the love seat one step closer to how we want this mooring. I'll play about with the angle but it is set more for winter sun than summer sun .... time will tell.

 The build was hampered by another 'summers day' 

We had an afternoon off and went for a decent walk to Norbury and had a pint of Guinness at the Junction... a 6 plus mile round trip walk to the pub and back. It was an expensive pint as I tipped half of it over me and Rachel lost her glasses ( £240 to replace!) on the way back. 

A good test of my resolve to let life wash over me as much as I can... 

So a productive visit and being back aboard for a good few days we will hopefully get a good test of the panel and the mooring  - might even get a few days cruising before the winter sets in and other projects take over. 

Saturday 2 September 2023

A nice milestone

 I posted this a while back ...Click me

Well today I checked the web page for our solar setup and was pleased to see we had produced our first MWh .. 1,000 kilo watts of electricity savings us just under 300 quid and the planet saving about 998kg of CO2 

Long may it continue to generate free ( after about 6 years on my calcs) electricity.