Monday, 1 September 2014

Pressing on

It's been another busy day and the weather is indeed improving, though it was still pretty horrid first thing.

Having put on full waterproofs, I walked down into Poynton for meat, cash and other stuff. When I came out of Waitrose, I wasn't sure if I'd missed the bus, so hung about at the stop for a bit in hope rather than expectation. This strategy paid off; I had missed it, but Johnny from the yard was on his way back with the butties for the mid-morning brew and picked me up.

Many thanks again, Johnny.

This meant that I got back in time for the morning coffee and chocolate session. Sheila, meanwhile, was running a washload in the bungalow and refixing the signs that had been taken down by an unknown hand over the weekend.

Dolce has come out of the yard and is tied on the Deeps, so the Braidbar collection is growing out here.

After lunch, we made a start on washing and waxing the floor. In fact, whilst Sheila started, I cleaned round the Squirrel plinth. When she'd done her bit, engine room to study bedroom, I followed on with the wax. Finally, I got to try out the polisher we bought from Halfords the other month; with the finishing bonnet on, it did a great job of buffing up the wax.

We were resting after all these labours when Graham off Priscilla II turned up and came to the Trading Post with us. Whilst we were all there, Austin and Liz off Just Siviting arrived. Both these boats are presently still on their moorings in Victoria Pit, but will be coming to join us on the Deeps tomorrow.

Sunday, 31 August 2014

Things go on getting better

Another downright lazy start today, followed by quite a bit of work. After breakfast, we put in most of an hour on polishing the saloon, both the panelling and the swivel chairs. The only difficulty was that we started to be overcome by the polish fumes, so left the last bits until we'd had coffee and hot choc.

Whilst at the Trading Post, I took the opportunity to get some blacking for the Squirrel. It turned out to be what used to be called black lead, though I suspect that Trades Description legislation doesn't allow that anymore, it being graphite really.

Back at the boat we had a bit of quiet time before lunch, reviewing the quiz questions and the like. After we'd eaten, another burst of activity finished the polishing. I'd been in two minds about blacking the stove, but I'm glad I did now, it looks so much better.

I typed up the quiz answer sheets and printed them out; we do seem to be ahead of ourselves a bit this year.

We had time to take a stroll along the towpath before tea. On the way back, Graham and Abbi invited us to look over Mirabilis, presently tied on the hire boat mooring. She's beautiful inside and out, a very modern style boat with all mod cons. We were particularly impressed with the TV screen, which rises electronically through the top of the cupboard dedicated to the entertainment systems.

Graham and Abbi joined Stephen, Jayne and ourselves for tea at the Trading Post; the sun's come out, the wind has dropped and things are definitely looking up, weather-wise.

Saturday, 30 August 2014

What a good day

It's been a very good day, but a bit busy...

The worst bit was first thing, when Martin knocked on the roof to say that all our signs about mooring over the Open Day Weekend had been cut down. He'd recovered them, but it's tedious all the same.

Never mind, we've moved on with the cleaning – just the saloon and the floor to do inside now – and still had time for hot choc and coffee at the Trading Post this morning. This afternoon, Linda and Jerry on Freedom invited ourselves and Martin in for tea and scones. The scones were accompanied by clotted cream, jam and strawberries.

After a bit, a bottle of fizz was produced and we all sat around nattering for quite a while, hence the lateness of this blog...


Thanks very much you two, it was a very pleasant end to a busy day.

The weather is supposed to be improving as the week goes on, which can only be good.

It's chucking it down just now.

Friday, 29 August 2014

Another busy day

The forecast deterioration in the weather has only just arrived, so we've been able to get quite a lot done despite another relaxed start. Sheila attacked the bathroom with the Pledge whilst I walked down the road as far as the Co-op to get more polish. They had Mr Sheen on special, so I got two cans.

Thanks to a lift from the ever-helpful Nigel who works in the Trading Post, I was back in good time before coffee break. In the event, this was just as well, as some urgent boat shuffling was needed to accommodate Tiree. As a result, it was gone eleven before we got our drinks.

After lunch, we took the fenders I've made for the auction along to store in the bungalow, had a long natter with Peter and Susan about arrangements for the weekend and then did some more gardening.

Returning to the boat, we met with Jerry and Linda on Freedom, the Braidbar we'd tied behind us on the Deeps. They needed to get a pump out, so Martin moved Ice Breaker down to occupy the space whilst they did so. As it's turned out, we needn't have worried, there's plenty of space here as I write.

I've polished most of the study bedroom; I just need to do the tedious bit in there, clearing all the IT gear off the desk to clean it. That will keep until tomorrow; we went for tea at the Trading Post and spent a merry time with Martin, Stephen, Jayne, Jerry and Linda, not to mention Frazzle the dog. Chris, Peter, Susan, Abbi and Graham also stopped by from time to time to join in, so the clans are gathering.

Back at the boat at last, I'm actually having to run the engine for a bit; it's been so cloudy and now horrible with wind and rain that the solar panel hasn't put as much back into the batteries as usual and I want to be sure to have enough power to run the heating in the morning.

Thursday, 28 August 2014

Steady progress

These posts risk being a bit sameish for the next week, I fear, but I'll keep on with them to reassure one and all that we're still here...


A lazy start today followed by some cleaning activity. We're now spray polishing the cabin and hull side interiors, starting at the stern as there was a duvet cover drying on a rack in the saloon and we didn't fancy sleeping with the aroma of Pledge after the next change of linen. Sheila had got permission to use the big washing machine in the bungalow, so I took a load of towels over and set them going.

I cleaned the engine room ceiling or deckhead, then set to with a can of Mr Sheen to clean the walls. Sheila, meanwhile, was using a can of Pledge in the bedroom. There's no significance in the different products, by the way, just the chance of having bought different ones at different times.

We were about halfway through when coffee/hot choc time came around, so we knocked off for a trip to the Trading Post. Since Mirabilis is tied right alongside the outdoor seating area, we were all able to offer advice to Graham and Abbi as they sort and stow their worldly goods on board.

Some of the advice was even helpful...

After the break, we helped with a bit of boat shuffling, then went for lunch.

More cleaning followed, completing those two compartments before we took a bit of a rest.

After the afternoon break, we got on with clearing up the last of the gardening detritus before ambling back to the boat.

Mirabilis is scheduled to leave on her first shake down trip tomorrow morning; must take a camera along.

Wednesday, 27 August 2014

Back to Poynton

We left it quite late before starting out this morning; the guy tied in front of us had said that the moorings at Poynton were very full, and we wanted to allow time for some boats to move. It was gone half nine before I winded Sanity Again and headed back the way we'd come yesterday.

When we got here, there were several spaces available, including the one next to Butty Lark. So we're back where we were but pointing the other way. We'll stay here until the final boat shuffle a week on Friday, I expect.

It was now half ten, coffee and hot choc time, so we adjourned to the Trading Post with Martin and were shortly joined by Stephen and Jayne. Dolce is now in the paint shed, probably for the rest of this week.

We were able to admire Mirabilis, Braidbar 150, ready for handover to Graham and Abbi who turned up while we were there. All the very best with her, you two; the grins do wear off, but it takes a while.


Having run out of bread, I lit the oven on our return to the boat, only to find that the pack of part bakes had gone mouldy. Plan B was to walk down to Poynton and get some sandwiches there.

On the way, we discovered that the Coffee Tavern, next to the Boar's Head, was open for once. They do light meals, so we tried them out. In thirteen years of visiting here, it's the first time we've been inside.

The food was fine, if basic. We each had a melt which came with chips (fries, really) and a bit of salad. Rested and refreshed, off we went down the hill to raid Waitrose for perishables. Having shopped, we had half an hour to wait for the bus, so spent half that time sitting in the sun on a handy bench outside the Civic Centre.

Stores unloaded and put away, a final burst of gardening took place before joining the gang at the Trading Post for afternoon drinks.

Tomorrow, boat cleaning will recommence, I suspect.

Tuesday, 26 August 2014

Busy morning, quiet afternoon

We'd been told that a major boat shuffle would take place first thing this morning, so we got up in good time and went to the yard just on eight. In the event, only a minor swap occurred as Mirabilis wasn't quite ready to come out of the paint dock. So Tiree came out and tied outside Dolce and Caroline Anne went in.

We winded Sanity Again at the far end of the Deeps and went through onto the water point; whilst the tank was filling, I got a cylinder of gas and a bag of Mixed Ovoids from the Trading Post. As the gas and coal cage is on that side of the yard, it's always easier to load them whilst on the water point. I had a bit of bother getting the connection to seal on the gas and in the end had to ask for another cylinder.

Sometimes the connector on the cylinder is just a shade worn and won't seal no matter what you do.

Once we were full of water, we pulled forward onto the shop mooring for pump out and diesel.

Now in that happy state of water and diesel tanks full, poo tank empty we boated off down the cut to High Lane to wind. It was Sheila's turn to steer today; recently she's done all the turning round.

We were in two minds about spending the night at High Lane or coming back to Adlington. In the event it was an easy decision; the moorings at High Lane were full.

So we've tied on the 24 hour moorings opposite Lyme View marina. Having lunched, I sorted stuff in the bow locker, emptying the bag of coal into the box in there and generally sorting it all out.

Since then we've been very quiet, reading, surfing, emailing and the like. Tomorrow, I'll wind us yet again and we'll go back to the Deeps, having broken our stay there so that we can do 14 days over the Owners' Weekend with a clear conscience.