Boogie Nights

"Ever wondered what it's like to live the dream, with damp elbows and a feint whiff of your close friend's toilet habits? This is a yachting blog with a difference, as we go on a journey of discovery, a journey of stupid ideas and ridiculous adventures. The daily commute will never look the same again."

bienvenu, hola, ciao!

16 April 2007

Dinghy love and driving without a licence

Dinghy love and driving without a licence
entry Apr 16 2007, 12:38 PM
Ive just bought another boat, ok its only a little dinghy but im quite excited. The good old Fl'eabay rides again, and mines a little redish orangey thing coming in at just under 8' and weighing in at around 30kilos.

So its in the bantam weight category. The only slight snag is that I have to drive to cornwall to collect it. thatll be a 500 mile round trip!
Im going to collect it in a couple of weeks, I havent told "the grumpy man" yet because i dont want to make him unnecessarily grumpy, there will be plenty of that when he comes back from a trip away and sees this little puppy tied up to the back or side of "big boat"
Im not sure what the reaction will be, but i thought bollocks to it, I want a dinghy, Im having a dinghy. plus it was cheap and if I do it up a bit i recon I could flog it for more than ive paid.



so, it was another glorious weekend of sunshine, looking for a winding point, filling the water tank, washing the boat ( and the dog), revving the tits off the engine to run the travel power outside a pub at lunchtime for half an hour while the washing machine did its job....
and the inevitable encounters with MENTALLIST narrowboaters who cant steer to save their lives.

Why do I get them? I mean, Im chugging along passing some moored boats minding my own business, having just executed the most perfect turning maneuver ive ever done, standing higher than normal on a rear locker to get a better view of a boat passing under a narrow bridge coming towards me, ive dropped to a dead slow speed waiting for him to resume normal position, but in fact hes heading directly for me. At this point Im gently applying reverse thinking, WTF is going on?... Ive got the grumpy man on the roof partially blocking my view and then he turns and shouts at me... "what are you doing" and I say "Im not sure what is happening here, this bloke is heading straight for me. "
the reply was "cant you see he's got his arm out indicating?"
"er no, your fat arse is blocking my view, I cant actually see the other driver very clearly, besides, where can he be wanting to go? theres no gaps on the side and its impossible to double up here"

Some amused gongoozlers sitting on one of the moored boats just to my right commented, "ah yes, he's got a mooring just up there" So I turn around to have a look where "just up there" is and its nearly 1/4 of a mile away!
WHAT? He needs to drive down the wrong side of a narrow section so he can moor up in 1/4 of a mile? learn to fucking drive you numpty.

So after much cursing to myself, I reverse up in front of a small protected weir ( the only gap in the boats available) while the mentallist goes past to begin his final descent to his mooring spot, flaps down, roger roger, with the seatbelt sign clearly displaying over head. Wind speed 2mph.
With the canal ahead of me now clear I return to my originally planned route, under the bridge. I then turned to see how the slightly out of control boat was getting on, and Im glad I wasnt the owner of the small plastic cruiser directly before his mooring spot as it got a bit of a hammering.

It really is a pet hate of mine, to see people driving their boats like cars. It just doesn't work. I dont know why there isnt some sort of competence test, or a CBT (compulsory basic training) for the canals/rivers.

after the waterpoint lunchtime engine revving washing machine situation, we are now seriously looking for some better sound proofing! ( or a silent generator)
we are also looking into solar power and a wind turbine to help keep the batteries topped up.
The boiler is still out of action due to a small, so far hard to discover exactly where its coming from, leak.

we are currently moored opposite one of the most gorgeous dutch sailing barges ive seen so far on this stretch of the canal. I absolutely love them and would trade our ditch crawler in like a flash if I could afford one.

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