Friday, 30 November 2012

No Change

Things are pretty much the same here. The river level has stopped rising, but it's not going down much, either. The temperature drops below freezing at night, so I'm having to use the heat gun to get the hatch shut. But, apart from that, everything else is fine.

Now he's used to it, Sumo seems quite at home, scuttling up and down our "it's a knockout" obstacle course to get on and off the boat. Let's hope Sheena feels the same way. :)

Yesterday, she said "it doesn't look very deep". But when you're suspended over it, negotiating the planks, things look very different indeed.

Here's mister, making the most of the king seat. Neither of us get a look-in, when Sheena's onboard.

Thursday, 29 November 2012

Even more water

Level still rising.. It's come up another few inches overnight.

Richie built us this bridge, so that I wouldn't get soaked every time I went out. Sumo was a bit unsure of it all, at first. But I think the urgent need for a pee overrode that. I still have to hoist him on and off it, but that's what his carry harness is for. So far today, I have dry feet. Which is a definite bonus. Thanks Rich!

Wednesday, 28 November 2012


No rain today. All windows and doors can be opened, to get some ventilation through the boat. Sheena is due back on friday, with a pair of wellies for herself, and some dry socks for me.

We've risen another couple of inches overnight, though our rate of ascent does seem to have slowed down now.

Henley looks pretty much the same, though the levels at Abingdon are allegedly dropping.

Tuesday, 27 November 2012

More Water

Yep, It's rained all day again. Not in big chunks, but a chilly windblown unremitting pizzle, which is quite miserable and demoralising to be out in. So we stayed put, and bunged another log on the fire. The river level has risen overnight, and from reports of the weather upstream, it'll continue to rise even further than this. The speed of the stream is currently "whizzing along". I guess, about 12 knots. Maybe faster. Impressive in it's ferocity and relentlessness.

Sumo has to jump off the end of the gangplank, and then swim for it. Thankfully, he seems to enjoy it. Though it's not such a barrel of laughs, when a dripping soaked dog is standing in the saloon, shaking himself. We can't go out for our usual walks, because the riverside paths are all flooded over (and i don't have any waders). But we are coping well enough. A big stash of wood and coal has definitely helped.

Not a very good day to be pulling out the leisure batteries to examine their electrolyte levels. They're settling at 12.74v now (down from 12.85v in the summer). Hoping for a dry day for that, sometime soon. Ha!

This was the situation in Henley, at 9:32am this morning..


Full Flood

It's official. The Thames is now in 'Full Flood'. Looking out of the back door told me that, as it's come up another couple of feet today. But at least I know now that it's going to get a lot worse, before it gets any better.

Here's a picture of Abingdon meadows, from the bridge..

And that little lot is all coming our way... soon...
"Oh Dear, Oh Dear", as Roger the lock keeper says.

(pic courtesy of Tim Lewis via the CWDF).

Monday, 26 November 2012

Could be worse..

Still rising. According to the towpath telegraph, the meadows at Abingdon are completely submerged now, so I'm glad we're not stuck up there again. Things could be a lot worse than they currently are. There's not much of a bright side at the moment, but I'm continuing to look for it.

The lads at the marina knocked us up this nifty plank, so that mister can still get on and off the boat, without being hoisted in his harness. Cheers guys..

Saturday, 24 November 2012

Still Rising

There was a look of complete doggy surprise when we went out this morning. Normally, we have to step down to get onto the boat. As there's only a couple of inches left to go, before the river breaches the edge, I'm hoping we can move to the service jetty tomorrow. It's a floating pontoon, and we'll be safer there.

Friday, 23 November 2012


The mists started rising around 2.15pm, when the sun realised it had no chance at all of burning anything off..

Last night, it blew a gale. And then heaved it down with rain until 3am. So, now everywhere is even more wet, completely sodden and throughly drenched, than it was before.

Inside the boat, we are warm and dry though. The river is running very fast, and has risen more than a foot overnight, but doesn't look like it will flood. Sympathies go out to people who have had their lives made miserable by the recent bad weather.

Wednesday, 21 November 2012

Stormy Weather

Battered by nature, today.

Did not move further than the fireside. It whipped the river up into a raging torrent, heaved it down with rain, and bobbed us about for most of the day. But, then everything went all calm, serene and orange for 10 minutes, before turning grey, overcast and sullen again. Very strange.

Unfortunately, all the trains are cancelled now.
So Sheena is still stuck down there in Devon.

Sunday, 18 November 2012

I never knew...

Back with another 15gb. In the downtime, I've been reading this interesting book that Sheena got me for our anniversary.

Louis Bleriot

Owner of a large riverside property, “New York Lodge”, later renamed “Riversdale House” at Bourne End from 1916.

Unfortunately, a major fire destroyed the property in 1926.

Rebuilt. Naff interior. Yours for.... 3.7 million!
Riversdale house @ Sothebys.

Sunday, 11 November 2012

Agg Lake

Panoramic view of the manmade aggregate lake..

Just downwind of the sewage treatment plant. A pleasant enough walk, which isn't as bad (or as whiffy) as it sounds.

Here's mister, enjoying some exercise. He didn't roll in fox poo, or launch himself into the river today. Good boy!

I appear to have caned this month's internet allowance, on checking out the current state of free PC game engines. So, no more posts for seven days, or I will get spanked with 3's extortionate excess charges. Sorry about that. We're fine though. Missing Sheena, who'll hopefully be able to rejoin us again soon. But, otherwise, OK.

Also, as it's Rememberance Sunday, here is a link I've been meaning to post for a while.. Eyewitness accounts of WW1

We will remember them.

Monday, 5 November 2012


Not exactly shorts and T-shirt weather, but it was nice and sunny this morning. Didn't last long into the afternoon, but it made a nice change from the howling wind whistling down the river.

Our supply of winter fuel also came today. Ten bags of the excellent 'Supertherm' smokeless coal, and some more dried and seasoned logs. Which should see us through. We got a good deal from Harringtons Bottled Gas Co. (a small family business who are competitively priced and 100% hassle free to order from). No more lugging it back from the village, a bag at a time. Wehey! We are happy puppies.

You may have spotted that our roof was already full of wood. Well, yes. But, a lot of that is diseased, and only really fit for kindling. The disease makes the grain go all fibrous and spongy. So, when you try to burn it as 'logs', it just goes "pfffftt", and dissapears in under 5 minutes! Even a roof full of good wood can vanish surprisingly quickly, as we often get through 3 or 4 in an evening when it's cold.

Bourne End Reach, taken from the Upper Thames Sailing Club.

Sunday, 4 November 2012

Red boards everywhere!

I'm counting my blessings. The latest deluge of rainfall has had a detrimental effect on river conditions, and there are red boards everywhere. Thank goodness I had the foresight to set off, before I got stuck on the other side of Henley and Marlow.

Here is mister, taking a rare break from his tea, to let me know he's not at all bothered by the fireworks...

Cookham sailing club put on a fine display again this year. Oooooooh!