Boatwif Blog

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Mill-hopping

       There was a sense of being in foreign parts today. A landscape and canal route usually familiar looked strangely different…          It had been a quiet night, high on the aqueduct above Bollington. There is no traffic noise here and the few ducks about were too hungry to make a racket, unlike the Canada geese at Poynton on Thursday night.  Then there had been frequent outbreaks of goose gabble after dark: “It’s well after lights out in the dorm,”...

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An Escape

    Ten meeting-less, appointment-free days stared out from the calendar; time then for a cruise… but where to? From moorings at Higher Poynton to Bugsworth Basin? No, that’s about a 10 hour trip, can manage further than that…To Uppermill, on the Huddersfield Narrow, and walk up to Standedge Tunnel? No, there have to be long cruises between mooring places on the Huddersfield, and it is still very cold…To Lock 57, that favourite bistro, down near Sandbach, on the Trent and...

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Ferry boat to Marple

Was it just a dream…?         Once the current cold spell is over perhaps Cleddau could resume her transport duties – and ferry her crew along the Upper Peak Forest Canal to Bugsworth for a spring weekend…?       So wrote Boatwif, a couple of weeks ago, following the Isle of Wight escapade. And a miniscule spring cruise has happened – honest!     After two nights aground in the Macclesfield Loft for the Library in the Landscape Affair (March 16th) Boatwif and the...

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Library in a Landscape

 Saturday 16th March Boats, books and scenery ‘are a few of my favourite things.’* This blog, however, will make no mention of the first category – but plenty of the second and third…             Techno Son-in-law mentioned the Library in a Landscape project sometime last autumn. An acquaintance, a fellow parent at the Cheshire One’s school, is a poet and a book lover. She had a vision of a small book lending library located in a beautiful outdoor setting. Though...

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Ferry Fascination

It goes back a long way, Boatwif’s fascination with boat and particularly with ferry watching…  As small children on a Sunday afternoon Senior Sis and Boatwif would be piled into the family car and driven down to Hobbs Point. From here a small vehicle and foot passenger ferry would cross to Neyland. The first ferry of memory was Alumchine, a paddle steamer operating until 1956.  Boatwif’s memory of this, and of her successor, the Cleddau Queen, was the curious way...

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Solent-side and mudslides…

For years there had been talk of going to the Isle of Wight, of walking the Coast Path, of taking in the views – but no firm plans ever emerged. Then, about a month ago, the Relief Crew, (Cleddau’s Relief Captain and First Mate) made a proposal.  “We’re going to visit family and to walk the dog, why not share a cottage with us?”  There was no good reason not to go – and so, on St David’s Day, a...

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Briefly Afloat…

17th to 24th February, 2013             It was half-term: released from the school routine the Cheshire One bounded up the garden path, paused in the kitchen for a height check (an increase of 2cm since Christmas), bounced around the living room, talked animatedly about her plans for our time together – and then the Cheshire Mum chimed in. There was homework to be done over half-term – work out which materials will float and then create an Aztec...

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Nostalgia

Blame Baby Sis… it was she who insisted that we made a visit (a last ever visit?) to the Pembroke Bookshop: all stock reduced, shop closing down and the bookseller retiring after 33 years.  It was the week before Christmas and already the shelves were looking sorely depleted.  We browsed, methodically moving around all sections; we chatted; we accumulated a pile of books and paid for them. As we left the shop there was a backward glance – would it...

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Oh for a boat… Stratford, then and now

The Three Sisters (Boatwif’s three sisters, that is) had generously donated monies for theatre-going in recognition of a significant half decade birthday.  The birthday was months ago; tickets for Stratford plays* were booked weeks ago.  After three days back in Stratford during the second week of January it has to be announced that the town and theatres retain their allure. First visit was as a teenager, viewing glamorous young David Warner in Hamlet. Seated far, far back in that vast...

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Snowbirds

Tuesday 27th – Friday 30th November, 2012                         Going out into a desert? “Boat blogs could prove a little difficult,” wrote Senior Sis in an e-mail last week. For three days in the Anza-Borrego Desert State Park Boatwif and the Captain searched the wide horizons for ships, but to no avail.  Camels have always been regarded as ships of the desert, haven’t they? None here, not now… but at the State Park Visitor Center there...