Full Suez x2 and five miles to nowhere

No wind to speak of no wind to speak of no wind to speak of Hutson looses his ropes kindly cue the wild gusts out of nowhere… and repeat. 😉

As it ever was. My Cunning Plan calls for me to briefly volte face and scoot west (go west, young man, go west), and that requires me to turn the Cardinal about. The choice was to reverse past a couple of moored boats, through the narrows left by a removed bridge, and turn in the marina entrance under the glaring youtube-esque eye of their cctv, or scoot on a five-mile round trip and come back to where we’d started from. I chose the latter because, well, cruise, yeah? Le soleil brillait, j’avais nettoyé mes dents, l’underwear was clean…

Besides, there’s only so much sitting around and looking at the (recent) weather that a chap can take without going completely gaga.

Ducks and debris on the Middlewich, in the rain.

I was there in the Control Room you know, when ducks were invented. A mystery voice shouted out from the cheap seats ‘You there – waterproof that chicken and give it a kazoo…’, and someone did.

Anyway, I digress. The sunshine was an S.A.D. lure too great to resist, so orf I went. The moment I got the last rope untied and was stood standing there, centre-line in hand, up came a collection of gusts and it took me ten minutes to get the Cardinal back to the towpath and close enough for me to step onto (I don’t do “leaps of faith”).

The cruise-ette then was quite splendid. Those are some substantially-built horses atop that bridge, and both were firmly asleep on both my outward and “homeward” journey.

There was, of course, the ubiquitous plonker moored absolutely smack on the edge of the winding hole – which is already on a curve in the canal – and which necessitated extra revs, a closer-than-usual pass, and no slowing down once done. Doubtless the occupants are still wondering and utterly clueless as to why one thousand out of a thousand boats that have turned there while they’ve been moored have all been less than considerate.

After our five-mile round-trip three-point-turn we got back to where we’d been and those same damned gusts of wind were still lurking about, so once again I flew the Cardinal like an 18,000kg kite. It didn’t help that a boat simultaneously approaching from the opposite direction cruised the entire length of these moorings at ‘Snail Pace Minus-One’ which gave me the choice of a likely Full Suez in front of them, or cruising equally slowly so as not to involve them in my manoeuvre.

Once they’d (eventually) passed and we’d spotted a couple of likely mooring rings I leapt off like a gazelle (not), got the centreline secured on a nappy-pin, and commenced leaning into the rope – again again.

Ten minutes later…

Well, we’re here now, and re-tied.

The weekenders are flying out of the marina up ahead like boats on a mission. What nature of mission it is impossible to say except that I doubt that it involves taking any prisoners.

This being England of course, the it of the weather is impossible to second-guess. One moment an alien sky, the next a sun-set worthy of some speech about remembering them at the going down of the sun and not repeating the same actions over and over again while expecting different results (but enough of global politics)…

During the week I was some twenty minutes early for Duck Day…

…and couldn’t be bothered waiting for another twenty minutes for the display on my wee MP3 player to read 22-02-2022 22:22…

I’ll do my level best to wait around for another two hundred years and twenty minutes, in order to see it roll over to 22-02-2222 22:22.

Don’t nobody reckon my chances in da comments – and don’t nobody get off da coach, neiver.

Messrs Solar-Panels are enjoying these spells of starshine every bit as much as am I. At least we still supply our own sunshine in this country, unlike our coal, oil, and gas. Only Mr Bilious Gates has plans to turn it off.

Meantime, I would like to share with you one of the best “memes” that I’ve seen of late.

Annoyance of the ‘…meets with…’ gaff aside, I did guffaw when I saw same.

Really, I ought not to laugh, it’ll only make my face ache again, and if there’s one thing that I don’t need it’s more face-ache. My middle name’s not Gargoyle for nothing you know.

Chin-chin for the mo, Muskies.

Ian H., and Cardinal W.


  1. Well, we’ve got rid of Dudley, (not the town, I hope…or…well…), Eunice and Franklyn. (Franklyn was a bit of a damp squid down here. Hardly knew he was passing through.) Eunice was a very angry storm! Now we’ve light breezes and sunshine.
    I love your photo of the sunset. Beautiful.
    Did you know that one of the characters in The Archers (Rex Fairbrother) has just moved into a narrowboat, moored on the Am? Boat living is even moving into Borsetshire!
    And I love the meme!

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    1. The storms here were a tad odd – nothing nothing nothing nothing nothing WALLOP!

      There are an amazing number of articles and features about living on narrowboats – ne’ery a one explaining that the Canal Company hates live-aboards, or on the procedures for water, rubbish and gazunders in winter when aforesaid Canal Company is closing down facilities at a rate of hasty knots… All of the ones I’ve seen have been a bit … Pollyanna … for my tastes. Will The Archers have an episode about C&RT parchuting in a spotter, as happened to me today, to log my location and move? Just untying my ropes and before you could say supercalli prestidigitation there was a little chap in uniform tapping boat name and number into his iPad! It can be most disconcerting.


      1. I will follow that storyline with interest. Have they done all the relevant research? Being the mother of a liveaboard, albeit in a marina, not a canal, and knowing you and your experiences, I am interested to see where they go with it.

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    1. Grammar aside it is a good one, innit? Two of the most slappable creatures on the planet, both labouring under the weight of the heaviest of peculiarly individual agendas.

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    1. Every winding is a fresh adventure – which way am da wind blowing, how shallow am da hole, how many boats will oik up while I am twelve-point turning? As you say, some twonk moored too close is just not needed.

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