Tuesday, 29 April 2014

Abingdon

"Live in Bush. La La La La La." ~ Iggy Pop


Hey everybody. This is where I've been hiding out since Sheena went away. Quite idyllic and lovely for the first couple of days. Then it heaved it down ridiculously. The meadows flooded. The river went up 4 inches. And the flow increased quite dramatically. I have never seen such a downpour in all my life. Thankfully I had fresh water, 7 days of food, and no great need to go anywhere. To have been moving a boat about in that, would have been quite dis-heartening, I imagine.

As per my usual routine, I spent the first few days looking down the roof, and panicing about being able to handle this massive bloody boat all on my own. Thankfully, that feeling normally wears off quite naturally, when I start moving about, and building up the confidence again.

Now I was obviously going nowhere for a few days. So I chilled out, read three books and sorted out the glowplug that should have been fitted months ago. Our engine was a real pig to start from cold. Embarrassingly so, sometimes. A choice between 5 minutes of starter motor stress. Or trailing extension leads outside for the 'heat gun down the inlet manifold' trick. (not something you want to be doing when it's raining, really). Now I can just turn the ignition key to the "glow" position. Hold it for 5 seconds... and wehey.... a running engine! I am quite chuffed with myself. Especially as nothing went "pop" or caught fire.

This morning, I needed water, and had to move. The red board 'No Navigation' warnings were approaching, and it was either move, or get stuck there. Hoped to find a 24 hour mooring at the lock, but unfortunately they were all full. So I had to go down through the lock. And it was after that, that I made an error of judgement. The weir was fully open, and the flow was 5 ("bloody hell") on the underpants factor. I had two options. 1) go down through the bridge, turn around, and come back up again. And hope I would be able to make it through the arch against the current. Or option 2) Turn around before the bridge, and hope I wouldn't get swept downstream side on.

Spur of the moment, I went for option two. Buzzzzzzzzzzzz (Computer says "No"). So I got to enjoy a nice sideways journey down the river. Thankfully, she did turn around before we got to Nag's head island, so there was no danger of getting embarrassingly wedged underneath the bridge. But... *BONNNNNNGGGGGGGGGG*... I bounced off of Narrowboat "Wotdoyaknow"'s bow as I was coming in. Rob, the owner, wasn't terribly impressed at first. Understandably. But he calmed down when he could see that my sincere apology was genuine. No damage done, thankfully.

I now have 5 days of stress free mooring. Hoping that the river doesn't go up again. Bit of a deja vu feeling, as I seem to recall exactly the same thing happening back in 2012.

Sheena wanted some Sumo pics...





Sorry we haven't updated the blog much since we left Bourne End. There has been so much "life" stuff to sort out, and so much BS for us to wade through, that I haven't felt cheerful enough to power up the laptop. The last thing I want to do is 'moan moan moan moan moan moan'... we get enough of that from other people, and fully appreciate how boring it is.

All fine here. No worries. Back soon... *Waves*

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