The meteorologisters are rushing around flinging entrails in the air and predicting that England will freeze in some rush of Siberian air for the next two weeks. Yes, well, we’ve all heard them cry wolf before. Even so, I have made some small preparations, just in case they speak the truth. The Cardinal and I have bunkered, serviced and moved on to a place with more about it should the ice-floes flow.
Yesterday while at our previous moorings, I organised a delivery of groceries from Sainsingworry’s Supermarket. I have fresh vegetables – including the magical “broccoli” and “dark green, crinkly cabbage” – so shan’t starve for at least six or seven days yet.
Yonder water-tank is full (possibly inadvisedly, should the temperatures plummet before I have time to use some and put some expansion room in the tank for ice…). The gazunders are empty, there’ll be no “Red light on Cassette Three, Captain” for a while. The galley is free from household rubbish and recycling.
Je suis prepared.
Mr Stove, who has been in his first grumpy mood for some months, has had his chimney flue thumped and swept clean, and I have a selection of not one, not two, but three varieties of coal with which to try to tempt him. He’s halfway through a bag of “Red something or other” and seems to be warming to it (as am I). I notice from the sack though that it is “not authorised for use in smokeless zones” or something, so slap me in irons and call me a Black Maria. Haven’t noticed the Cardinal’s three funnels belching black smoke yet though, so I do wonder if the line dividing “smokeless” from “not smokeless” is perhaps as thin as a government excuse.
I’ve tucked the Cardinal’s arse-end in next to some CaRT-esque work-pontoon (well, three pontoons, all strung together and carefully moored up with blue twine…) just in case someone comes through that bridge at 85mph, loses control of their boat on the ice and is looking for something to ricochet off.
Should they approach from the bow I shall at least have time to dissuade them by using the long nines.
Mind you, if the freeze does happen I could see that pontoon being popular with basking polar bears, confused penguins and Arctic monkeys lazing about, so my cunning plan may misfire.
My cunning plans usually do.
- Harpoon ✓
- Set of teeth suitable for seal blubber ✓
- Blueprints for bijou but comfortable igloo ✓
- Whale-oil for lamps ✓
- Goose-grease to lather all over myself for insulation ✓
- Hi-Vis Longjohns to stop the goose-grease from falling off ✓
- Rifle with Laser-sight just in case John Carpenter comes over the horizon in a helicopter, chasing what appears to be a “husky” but is in fact some ravening alien life-form hell-bent on eating my brains ✓
- Flame-thrower in case I miss with the rifle ✓
Well you never really know, do you?
I have done all that I can, but have I done enough?
Time alone will tell.
I’ll let you know.