It would appear that I made an amazingly good decision in moving the Cardinal and, necessarily thus, myself, to this new location to sit out “The Beast From The East” and its head-on collision with Storm “Emma”. Cold we have in bucketloads with a wind-chill of “ye gods, I can’t feel anything below the waist – or above it”. Wind we have by the barrel, for it is difficult to have a significant wind-chill without wind. The gusts are, rather like my IQ, in the low forties. Snow though has, largely, passed us by. We’ve had only a couple of inches of the old white stuff (so far…) and most of that has gone. Better yet, the snow that we did get here was that powdery, dry stuff that you Johnny Foreigners often get (while ours is more generally soggy, wet, half-frozen, half-defrosted and, oftentimes, yellow). When I have ventured forth to clean off my solar panels (all hail the solar panels) all it’s taken is a quick brush down. Luxury, pure luxury.
Misunderstand me not, it is winter here and will be for some time to come. It’s colder than a politician’s heart, and the cold is that seeping, creeping, bone-chilling cold that bears little relation to the reading on the thermometer. The Cardinal is rocking about with each gust, and in that photograph above you can see the old powdery nonsense blowing over the ice.
Mr Stove is working around the clock, and I have notified him via internal memo that he may eat whatever he wishes to eat and in such quantities, for the moment, as he desires. Rather like Frankenstein’s monster in his early days, Mr Stove likes to be fed and cleaned every two or three hours overnight.
Mr Stove and I are fortunate in this matter to have the brave souls of the fuel boat “nb Halsall” out and about, breaking ice and delivering. Tis much appreciated.
The outdoor cellar before their visit:
The outdoor cellar after their visit:
I’ve gone for a brand called “Red” this time, after the recent experiments. It seemed to burn better than the others (in their new formulations), and although it is not certified as “Smokeless”, the world can kiss my Arsenal Villa are playing well again, are they not?
Yestereve, before clambering into my hammock to hibernate, I made myself some toast (lashings of Marmite, the food of the gods). It was only as I was munching the last crust and licking crumbs from my feeding dish that I realised – that was the first LPG that I had used all day. Coffee, breakfast, lunch, din-dins – all cooked on the stove-top, using heat that would otherwise have gone either largely unnoticed or to waste. Splendid stuff.
This morning, doubtless emboldened by my surfeit of toasted nutrients, I decided to try one of those “selfie” things that all of the young folk are talking about on the world wide wireless.
I don’t think that I have quite grasped the mechanics yet though.
Then I thought that I could practice on my legs, but it turns out that my legs are in revolt and I have lost not only my lower-limb mojo but also all traces of leggery-elegance and presence. Once upon a time I could, without the slightest effort, adopt the stance of Mr J Wayne (after he’d got off his horse and relaxed for a while) and of others with whom one would not meddle inadvisedly. Not so this season for me. I think that the three attempts below look more like “I don’t give a damn”, “Ooh, get me – I’m in the Army now, on sentry duty” and “About to lose my mind and launch into the Hopak, forgetting the plastic knees”.
I gave up, cleaned off the solar panels again and went back aboard to put on a curry for today’s lunch.
Even though they laughed at me, I didn’t curry the ducks.
They have enough problems of their own at the moment, especially the drakes.
The bridge is looking a little more wintery today than it has been. I shall simply say that of all the possible names for moorings, “Slow Down Moorings” has got to be the most popular, and the least imaginative. Everybody, everywhere calls their moorings “Slow Down” – except for the few that are christened “Dead Slow Moorings”.
To the notice-makers I say simply this. Punctuate, people, punctuate or expect to be ridiculed.
So, what have I told you in this over-lengthy post? Not a lot, except that winter is all around, I have coal, my legs look like something sawn off a pub piano, drakes feel the cold too and there are moorings nearby called “Slow Down Moorings”.
Isn’t that enough?
Oh – and I hope that you like the new layout (I hope that the layout works!) – prompted by complaints from the cheap seats about the white-on-black text of the previous layout’s “comment” section. Is that racerist? I don’t know. Anyway, difficult to read if you’re on drugs, apparently, and I hadn’t given the matter any thought before. Well, now I have. 😉
Chin-chin, and BBBBRRRRRRR!
Ian H., Admiral.