Thursday, 31 December 2009


Happy New Year!

2010 Hat Cheers.

2010 Drink 2010 Drink 2010 Drink 2010 Drink

Happy New Year

Kindest regards to you all and thanks for reading.

Tuesday, 29 December 2009


Another day and yet more turkey.

Here's a lock that is very easy for the boaters. Tie to the floating pontoons and let the lock keeper do his thing..............Simples.

Oh.. this is bad, very bad. Pay and display moorings? I hope this isn't a sign of things to come on the canals!!

Sam has now left albeit with some trepidation about the forecast. They guessed heavy snow would smother Cardiff and move out along the M5 by 09.00 today. For a start, the wind was in the wrong direction for any snow to do that and............ I wont witter on.

Suffice to say that after driving on clear roads all the way back, she arrived home at 14.00 well within the normal three hours journey time.
She was welcomed home by some falling snow flakes as she left the car.

Turkey curry anyone?

Until next time...................................

Monday, 28 December 2009

Back To Braunston

A trip to Cardiff for Christmas, one tyre change and an Indian rope trick!

We are back.......with enough left over turkey to feed us for a week. I thought the parents took food parcels to the kids, not the other way around.

A quick story:

On the return journey Sams car developed a bit of a wobble on the motorway. Pulling into some handy services it turned out to be the front tyre starting to break up. This then turned into mother and daughter (both stubborn, and determined) wanting to change the wheel for the practice.

I have not been that embarrassed for quite some time.

They would not let me help, not even to get near it. All those people in the other cars parked around us staring at two women changing the wheel with a man standing there just watching. Those eyes were burning into my back.........I can still feel them now.


Here's a few pictures from around Mermaid Quay and surrounding areas.

Some very different lock gates,

and a considerably speedier exit.

The old and the new, this old lock house being dwarfed by this strange new build.

Half way through our walk, this water bus was about to leave for a half hour trip around the bay.
Ooo....., shall we go for a ride says D.
Speechless absolutely speechless

Back at the boat, leaving for the water point proved harder than it should have been. Ropes like iron bars and a frozen canal brought us back to our waterborne life with a bump!

Until next time..............................

Wednesday, 23 December 2009


Another grand day even with the dodgy weather guessers.

Last nights guesser certainly took the biscuit. She stood there staring out of the screen, and gave us this pearl of wisdom about the snowfall today:


We might get a lot, we might get a little, or we might get none at all.


Ok? Good,.....we know where we stand now!!

As it turned out she was right on the no snow guess.

Right, that's it for now. We are off to the daughters for a couple of days of festive cheer and over indulgence.

So, I will take this opportunity to wish everyone who reads this Blog,


Christmas Antlers Christmas Antlers Christmas Antlers

Until next time............................

Tuesday, 22 December 2009


Another glorious day, and someone trying their luck!

A bit of fog this morning cleared to reveal the beautiful day waiting underneath.

Our daily jaunt to the village shop gives us so much scope for pictures.

Back where we come from, the recent years have produced next to nothing of snowfall, what did fall would normally disappear within a few hours anyway. This, on the other hand is a real treat for us and we are trying to make the most of it.

Ice Cream anyone?

Business as usual for the shop at the bottom lock, didn't see too many people taking up the offer though!!

Until next time........................

Monday, 21 December 2009


A mad bus ride to Daventry. Strange to find the real world is still as bad.

Another crisp and bright morning so we headed off to Daventry for a bit of shopping.

It was like a boaters meeting at the bus stop as quite a few people had had the same idea, we all piled on under the watchful eye of a jobsworth inspector, who, after watching us all buy tickets came to our seats to check that we still had them.

Our two tickets were together as they had come out of the machine that way, he duly checked them.......... and then asked to see D's ticket. As Del boy would have said "What a P-----r"

The return journey didn't get any better, the driver obviously thought she was a female Jenson Button the speed she was driving over the icy roads. This ended with her careering off a roundabout in the wrong direction!!

Much shouting from our fellow passengers and a lot of reversing later we were back on track. A short while later we were only too pleased to get off the thing and back to normality.

Another toddy on our return returned us to sanity again.

Until next time..........................

Sunday, 20 December 2009


Lots of logs and the revival of the hot rum toddy!.... Bliss.

Today began by us being awoken by some maniac trying to break out of the ice opposite us. He failed dismally though. You really cant help but wonder where on earth did he think he was going?

From here it is practically open countryside to Hillmorton in one direction and the same over to Calcutt or Napton. We will never know.

We had a good wander with our trolleys today, gathering as much wood as we could cram into them. This didn't take all that long and we were soon back at Ubique cutting it all up.

We had gathered about enough for another two to three days of continuous burning which is now all lovingly piled in the log box.
It was just about then that I remembered the luxury of the hot rum toddy.

When you have got yourself just cold enough, (not before) this is the thing to have.

This stems from back in the days when you have been to sea at two in the morning, the spray has been freezing onto the wheelhouse as you carve your way out through the waves. Once the Pilot had been unceremoniously dumped aboard the incoming ship it was then a race back to the harbour and the delights of the toddy to get the blood flowing again.
Ahhhh.......... memories.

On our frequent walks to the village we were a bit taken aback as to why we had never noticed this face before. It's been there a while, we must of had our eyes closed.

Its 23 C in our front room at the moment..............which is nice.

Until next time...........................

Saturday, 19 December 2009


O What A Beautiful Morning,....O What A Beautiful Day,..... I've got A Beaut......OW.
Ear Clip..... No Singing!!

The canal was frozen solid this morning with temperatures dropping to minus 8 overnight.

The same view from the bow, but with solid water this time.

Oi, stop playing Reservoir Ducks.

Even in these conditions there is someone who wanted to be on the move!!
Thankfully they gave up after half an hour of trying to bash their way through.

All the water standpipes along here are frozen solid, this is going to make life interesting if the freeze continues.
We do have a very large water tank aboard Ubique that is over half full at the moment, that should give us a week or more.
Our hot water tap in the kitchen has frozen solid for now, the bathroom is ok though.
I can only think the fitters have run this pipe under the floor with no insulation around it.
As Fred would have said " That there floor is gonna have to go"........ well be lifted anyway.

Until next time.........................

Friday, 18 December 2009


Strangely White.

This was yesterday afternoon, all sunshine and brightness, then something strange happened over night.

What a great day!!

My personal favourite, how can this be Braunston?

Until next time.....................

Wednesday, 16 December 2009

Calcutt To Braunston, No Locks.

Two Anniversaries, Our Elastic Runs Out And A Breakfast Moocher Arrives.

The top lock at Calcutt was a cold and lonely place this Tuesday morning.
This was just about as far as we could get to in this direction before the elastic, that we seem to have attached to a ring back at Braunston, tightened, and started to pull us back there once again.

It was a bit of a red letter day though, as it was a year ago that we put the deposit down on Ubique, ultimately making her ours.
A year??? on earth can that have been a year ago?

There is also another anniversary to mark here, which we did. A bit of a strange day all in all.


A Little Place Called Flecknoe.

Here's our breakfast moocher.
This is the female, she managed to grab all the food on offer as the male wouldn't get out of the water.
D says she is clever and not as lazy as the male!
I say shes daft being that trusting, she could easily end up being the meal herself!

That bridge in the background is Flecknoe Bridge, which, to all intents and purposes looks to be absolutely in the middle of nowhere and very quiet.
Wrong, wrong and wrong again, this turned out to be a "Boy Racers" paradise for most of the late evening.

Oh well....... we live and learn!!

We are now all tucked up back alongside at Braunston ................again.

Until next time.........................