Tuesday, 13 July 2010

Waving Pensioners

An overcast day, with a few showers. But unusual, in that there was hardly any wind, and the river was barely moving. A perfect day for us to practice again, and make sure that everything is working as it should. Safe in the knowledge that the marina tug was there in case we got into any trouble, and with our 14kg Danforth anchor nestling in the well deck, we shoved off.

As usual, as soon as our rear end was out in mid channel, we got hit by a sudden gust of crosswind, which pivoted us back towards the bank. Then further. Towards the railway bridge! For a few moments, it looked like we'd be heading off downstream. But then the idiot on the tiller realised that the boat wasn't in gear.

With the propeller actually doing something, we pivoted round in our own length, and were able to carry on in the direction we'd originally intended. Took it all nice and slow. Did not panic. And the oil/filter change we'd done, seemed to have cleaned up the black smoke problem.

Enjoyed a delightful pootle up to Marlow. Got bumrushed by a big pleasure boat full of pensioners. But, thankfully, they'd passed before we had to turn around. It was intimidating to have such a large vessel steaming up behind us. But the pensioners all waving at us was nice. Unfortunately, slowing down and manouevering towards the bank, also meant we had to annoy 2 anglers. They looked a bit peeved, when we snuck around the bend, straight into their lines. But our sincere and genuine apologies seemed to dissolve the angry looks.
Boat full of Happiness
Then we managed a perfect turnaround, and Sheena steered us most of the way back.

Another slightly hairy moment, just before mooring up again. But the hireboat was also turning around, and we both did syncronised turns that were simply beautiful. I'm also happy to report that we glided back onto the jetty in a textbook fashion. Engine off. Kettle on.

Didn't ram anything, run aground, or have any embarrassing incidents. Though we only covered bits of the river we knew, today was a great success in beating back the fear, and genuinely.... boating.

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