Wednesday, October 28, 2015

Up With The Lark

It's been chaotic so far this week. On Monday morning we had to be up early at the Beta engineer was due at  nine and we needed to get all the storage boxes off the back of the boat and take up the engine boards  ready for the 250 hour service and leak finding. In the afternoon Eric went to King's Lock Chandlery to get a new calorifier as ours had developed a leak and they're cheaper there than at Midland Chandlers for the same type and size.

On Tuesday morning we had to be up again as the carpet fitters were due at nine and we needed to clear the stuff at floor level. They arrived on time and two hours later we had a nice clean, new carpet  which felt very nice under my feet. Supplied and fitted by  the carpet shop in Ellesmere. 

Today we had to up again as the calorifier was being fitted and we had no idea when the engineer was coming. He came at midday so we could have had a lie in. We now have water without needed to mop up under the bed. It wasn't a quick job as the new calorifier needed different connections  and it involved engine and central heating connections to the twin coils, but it's done now.

In the afternoon we took Ben to the vet for a referral back to University of Liverpool Small Animal Hospital at Leahurst, which is currently being arranged. Hopefully they can help him.

Tomorrow we're definately having a lie in!!

Friday, October 23, 2015

House Clearance In Newport

After a very hectic ten days in Newport clearing and cleaning my dad's house, it's finally up for sale. You just don't realise how much stuff can be accumulated in a lifetime living in the same house. My dad certainly  didn't throw much away.At least on a boat there's just no room to keep loads of stuff.

We're back home to the boat tomorrow with a 250 hour engine service arranged for Monday and with water leaks to sort the Beta engineer will be busy. On Tuesday a new carpet is being fitted  so Ben and I will go for a walk to get out of the way. Hopefully our leaky calorifier has been fixed temporarily by Plumbers Mait until we can get a suitable replacement. We shut the water off and crossed our fingers. 

Ben has had a wobbly week in Newport not coping well with the stairs, I've had to help him up and down holding onto his harness. He finds smooth surfaces difficult too, his one leg seems to slide and he overbalances. He's much more wobbly although some days are better than others. He's definitely having Bambi on ice moments and finds it difficult to turn around.A visit to the vet for a check up although it worries me that the meningoencephalitis Ben had eighteen months ago was only picked up by the neurologist. 

Goodnight, it's way past my bedtime!

Tuesday, October 13, 2015

Back In Whixall Marina

We arrived back at Whixall Marina after a very pleasant cruise on Sunday afternoon, the last cruise of the year. Ben the dog wouldn't jump onto the pier  as the boat next to us had gone which meant if he missed he would be in the water, so had to be lifted which was going to cause a problem. Luckily we were able to swap moorings to one with a bigger area of pontoon at the bow so with some coaxing we got him back into jumping off fairly happily if you don't count the growl as he jumps.

Yesterday we went to Ikea looking for a new chair which would go through our narrow fronts, we had 22 inches/56 cms width to get through and we  found a chair which Eric said would fit and it did although the size of the box would have defeated us without the load space of a Freelander. The chair is called Strandmon  and much more comfortable than the Poang chairs we had but takes up more room than a Poang, but as we replaced two chairs for one we're ok.

Saturday, October 10, 2015

Here We Are Again- In Ellesmere

Yesterday Eric was busy painting the gunnels on one side of the boat , today we cruised for an hour and a half  to Ellesmere. We used the services before mooring up on the arm. Quiet here today but by tonight it'll be full up. Just a little bit  of shopping before we had a lazy afternoon. The satellite signal has been found ready for Wales v Australia and the Welsh flag is flying on NB Bendigedig.

Thursday, October 08, 2015

Crossing The Border- Back In England

Looking back across Chirk Aqueduct to Chirk Tunnel

Ben and I walked  for half an hour from Whitehouse through the tunnel with the boat as far as Chirk Tunnel. He wasn't too keen to walk through a tunnel but with coaxing he did it.  We waited for a couple of boats to come through  Chirk Tunnel before it was our turn.  Across Chirk Aqueduct and the sign read 'Welcome to England'. A pleasant cruise with nothing ahead or following us and no queues at the locks which was good news.

The last two locks of the season to do and then we moored up below  New Marton Locks as Eric had some more painting he planned to do - undercoating the gunnels on the towpath side obviously. A very small area of roof has had it's sandpaper scraped off as it has rusted underneath, primed and undercoated but it's a big job so it's going to take some time.

Wednesday, October 07, 2015

The Return Trip- Llangollen To Whitehouse Moorings

A quick walk into Llangollen to get a bag of sticks and we were on our way. First we had to turn around in the mooring basin. We followed a boat through the one way narrow section and it turned out to be the slowest ever cruise to Trevor as the boat ahead never went above tick over and stopped for every boat to pass even though there was plenty of room. 

We also came across a boat across the cut with the occupants inside totally unaware  that they had blocked the canal. We pulled over while they retrieved their boat and let the trip boat pass and followed him across  the Pontysycyllte Aqueduct. Lots of tourists walking across and taking lots of photo of the boats. Just one lift bridge at Fron where Ben and I got off to work the bridge and have a walk.

We moored up on the visitor moorings at Whitehouse and  I lit the fire as I was feeling cold. We even had some hot soup as we cruised, the weather's cooler today. Eric had to clear the roof of acorns, twigs and oak leaves from last night. I certainly didn't have much sleep with  everything dropping on the boat. Reminder to self, moor a bit further along! We moored in the same place one snowy winter.

A wintery picture of NB Bendigedig at Llangollen- a few years ago.

Tuesday, October 06, 2015

'The Sky Is Falling Down'

On Monday Eric waited to cruise the narrows to Llangollen Visitor Moorings while  I walked ahead to check for boats, all clear so I rang him to say it was OK to come through. There was a space which was the place we always stopped when we moored up here for the winter so we filled it up. We have an overhead oak tree hence the title......acorns are falling on the boat,  which make me thing of the story of Chicken Licken where an acorn fell on his head and he thought the sky was falling down!
Today we went for a walk along the towpath towards the Horseshoe Falls, and back into town to get some bread and milk. The washing machine has worked overtime as we're on shoreline on a working bollard and paying £6 a day for the privilege so I am getting my money worth. Lunch was Panini's and lattes at Fouzi's in Llangollen where we ate on the outside tables as we had Ben the dog to help us finish our food.

At the moment we have lots of rain falling down, hammering on the roof as well as acorns and the  hire boats are still whizzing by making waves, obviously some crew with no idea of going slow.

Sunday, October 04, 2015

Nearly In Llangollen

This morning we worked through New Marton locks after waiting in a queue. I stayed behind at the first lock to help the boat following us through as it was their first ever lock. By the time Ben and I had walked to the next lock it was Eric's turn to go through. We decided as it was such a lovely day we'd cruise as far as the Lift Bridge before Llangollen, going down to the paid moorings in the morning so we could have two days in Llangollen.

It's been really busy today, we've never seen so many boats, walkers and cyclists on the move. The sun on a Sunday afternoon certainly  ups the visitor numbers. Crossing the Pontycysyllte Aqueduct was slow following some day boats but who cares with the lovely views. I always look out for the first view of Castell Dinas Bran  from Sun Trevor but I didn't take any photos.  I don't think we'll be walking up there this knees are sore and Ben's only does short walks.

Saturday, October 03, 2015

Ben Has An Unexpected Swim

Ben's all dry now.
The day started rather wet as Eric tipped his cup of tea in bed, resulting in me doing a load of washing. It didn't get any dryer as while Ben was having a wee near the canal side, he overbalanced and fell in! He practised his doggy paddle along the piled edge while I crawled along to grab his harness and hold on until Eric could quickly moor the boat and help me get him out......25kg of wet dog is not easy! Back onboard one shivering dog wrapped in a big towel. He soon recovered and ate his dish of food. Eric  had said the dog needed a wash!

Friday, October 02, 2015

Moving On Towards Llangollen

Watering up at Ellesmere
Up early then a wait for the carpet fitter to arrive to measure up........does anyone ever come at the time they arrange? We decided to have lunch before we moved and our first stop was the very slow water tap at it Ellesmere Services. Accumulated rubbish binned and cassettes emptied and the tank is still filling up. Eric's been busy painting the gunnels on one side of the boat. We're now heading towards Llangollen with painting to do on the spotty other side of the boat, the gunnels have taken a battering this year after our six hour tow to Streethay in the Summer.

Ben and I had a misty, damp walk this morning but we now have sunshine.......a lovely afternoon for boating.