Saturday, February 11, 2006

A boozy night , then Our first pub! (on Herbie anyway)

We’re finding our feet, and receiving a welcome here. Thursday night we were invited along to a Mick’s boat for a glass or three of wine. Mick is the man to know at these moorings, and sets up the WiFi for you, gets you coal, and generally dispenses help and advice.

So somewhat hung over on Friday this morning, we motored up Ware as planned. Getting out of our home moorings was er.., hard and we made a bit of a pigs ear of it, and of course we had an audience of the experience boaties. Apparently it’s notoriously difficult there when the wind is in the wrong direction. The trick, they now tell us, is to let the wind blow the boat the wrong way and then reverse out. Maybe we’ll try that next time.

At Ware, on Mick’s advice, we moored overnight outside the Saracen’s Head a big and busy pub, and of course felt duty bound to patronise it and sample the local McMullen’s Ale which is fairly quaffable. Waking up this morning we had a cheery flock of swans, ducks and geese alongside, and it was all rather satisfactory. Ware seems quite nice and is largely unspoiled by chain stores etc..

We turned the boat immaculately(!), and when we got back to base today we made a respectable job of squeezing back into our narrow mooring space (no wind this time), so we’re feeling pleased. However I don’t think we had an audience this time. Sods Law!

Owning a boat is quite stressful at first. Will the engine start? Will the batteries charge up? Will we be frozen stiff? Well all we can say is it all works so far.

Next to the river here, up an embankment is “The New River”. This is a 25 mile long aqueduct carrying water from Hertford to feed the needs of Londoners and apparently still much in use today. Quite a flow on it at the moment in fact as water is getting short in the city. The amazing thing is that it was built in the 17th century.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Using the wind as a directional tool is pretty useful. Once you've done it a few times (as I have accidentally and on purpose), you'll start considering it just as much as engine and tiller.