Friday, 9 May 2008

Little Venice catch-up

The problem with trying to keep a blog as a full record as that the more you do, the more behind you get on documenting it all... anyway, Tortoise is back at Iver after a couple of weeks away in town. Cathi had a course very close to little venice ten days before the IWA cavalcade itself, so I broought Tortoise in as a portable hotel which went very well, including an evening in the Prince Alfred and pizza afterwards at Red Pepper over the road.

Meanwhile I'd been able to do this with a big surge of furniture building; kitchen unit and the three bed assemblies have all been constructed out of 2x2 timber and seem pretty solid - here's a quick view of the kitchen under construction - it's good to have a working sink again (and inspiring cupboard doors on Paul's boat 'Chuggamuffin'), and a view towards the front of the boat with the doors lined, temporary shelves in place, and beds, and even one set of curtains.

The week before the cavalcade, Delaware Terrace filled up; Protea, a 45' shared owndership boat asked if they could moor up outside of me, which was fine by me, although got a little awkward on the Friday when I wanted out and they weren't around - would have been fine only the towpath gap was shorter than their boat...

Friday afternoon (having affixed vinyl name stickers I joined the random melee of boats moving into the basin, after meeting up with a lot of Iver people who'd come over that day. I had a plum position on the east side of the basin, Rembrant Gardens; hardly any distance by water, but a long way round by foot. I was only a few boats away from Jim & Mary, prevous owners of Tortoise, now on Heebejeebe, who'd brought Salad days in for the CC many times. I had a pretty good view from the front, too - in fact Sunday night Jim & Mary joined me for the illuminated boat parade, watching front the front deck. I wasn't too far from this 20' Sea Otter - immaculate inside & out, but you'd expect that for the price...

Sat morning I did a guided tour of Paddington led by Isambard Kingdom Brunel, although he was recognised as 'Andrew' at one point. Highly amusing, although it was sponsored by Paddington development corporation and lingered alittle too much on newer buildings rather than older ones for my taste. he also failed to mention Hadar moored in Paddington Basin - having looked at their posted I realised I'd seen Hadar's crew about, but not on Hadar herself...

Saturday afternoon I was offered a lift on Moontiger up to Camden & back, not realising I was going to be lock monkey; perhaps they thought I could cope with being heckled by goths (in fact very few goths in evidence, mainly just drunk wannabees and a capoeria troupe). Amusing to see a younger passenger being shown the canal traditions, but Foster's? Oh well.

Later than night (after another trip to the Warwick Castle) I spotted that the Pirate Club had pressganged one of the Paddington Arm statues into membership.

Sunday was mainly spent elsewhere; Monday half the boats had left, but that afternoon was my 'open house' day, I think the maximum number of people at any one point was 14, but back down to 9 or 10 when I moved the boat back to Delaware Terrace before I got too drunk. ;-)

Tues I had a short notice day at work (grrr), but came back to the boat late Tues night, and set off first thing Weds morning - left 7.30 and got into Iver at 1pm, including a stop at Sainsbury's; a little quick for 19 miles, but technically legal, thankfully.

So now back alongside Breeze; electrics, engine and domestic, and next, I think, and finding someone to restore the gas. very solid, tangible, progress, and also very usefully cruiseable, more importantly.

(a lot of links above are also pictures)