Thursday, July 23, 2009

Steerers seat trials, belly dancers and a visit from Rainman

The new steerers seat is OK. The right height, comfy, stable, foldable, a good footrest, but not in truth very "boaty". I think we'll use it for long stretches without locks but it gets in the way a bit when people have to shuffle around on the rear deck getting on and off at locks. I don't think Kath likes it much. I can't get her to sit on it!

Tuesday was a very short day from Fenny Stratford to the Globe at Old Linslade, one of our favourite stops. Wednesday was busier as we moved through Leighton Buzzard across the green pastures of Slapton and Ivinghoe (passing yet another new marina being dug) up to Marsworth where Claire and the kids joined us. Having dinner at the Anglers Retreat we had the extra treat of a troupe(?) of belly dancers in full regalia waving their midriffs in the garden. In truth their outfits were somewhat more impressive than their dancing but it makes a change from Morris dancers I suppose.
Today dawned strangely warm and sunny as we kitted out little Grace in ther lifejacket and waited for friend David to join us for the day. I say strangely warm and sunny, because it always rains when David (aka Rainman) joins us. He arrived and we set off up the serpentine Marsworth flight in shorts and tee shirts taking turns at lock winding, Jacob sometimes doing the driving into the locks. Not bad for an eleven year old.
The sun shone through the overhanging branches of the sylvan Tring cutting and at Cowroast where BW have at last installed some proper reycling bins (hooray). It was even sunny through lunchtime as we picnicked on the bank between the Dudswell locks.
When David's rain eventually came after lunch, it did it in style, like stair rods, soaking us to our very pores in minutes. He certainly knows how to organise a downpour. Good to know he hasn't lost his touch. It's just as well he's a good friend and a handy crew member or we'd have to ban him! Also he brings chocolates, so we can forgive him virtually anything.
So here we are, damp but not disheartened at Berkhamstead. Lots of locks or Claire and Jacob to practice on tomorrow. David has departed for home so perhaps we'll have a dry day.


Adam said...

I don't think I'd sit on it either! I've always been taught that you shouldn't stand within the sweep of the tiller, in case something heavy hits the rudder. It could cause the tiller to swing and knock you off. I know that lots of people stand/sit there, and apparently few come to any harm, but personally I'll stay forward of the tiller!

VallyP said...

The space does look a tad small Neil, although the seat itself looks ideal!