Yesterday at Cosgrove was a boat maintenance day for us both after a lie in and late breakfast.
David did boat housework, so the inside looked spic and span – all while still in his dressing gown – very suburban, I thought.
I scraped down, sanded and treated the little bits of surface rust on starboard side of the boat. Strangely, there are far fewer on the starboard side than on the port side. Most of it was on the roof in the channel made by the handrail. There was a significant amount of surface rust though on the roof either side of the starboard slider rail for the top hatch – that isn’t surprising really as the hatch is off centre and the starboard side is lower than the port side of it. The paint had flaked so was easy to get off totally.
Previously I’ve used the scraper on the business end of the wirebrush but yesterday I got out the scrapers I’d bought in Macclesfield – much more effective, with better scraping ability and much more purchase for my hands – made scraping much easier. I also find that the sanding blocks are better than paper – easier to handle, fewer bumpings of my knuckles and my hands don’t ache. My hands do however get filthy with dark blue paint dust as well as Firtan which I have taken to wiping on with the ubiquitous blue paper towel that we bought in Midland Chandlers – it is cheaper than paper towels from the supermarket and looks proper butch! However using it to apply the Firtan is a bit girlie, I think.
I had washed off the worst of it all when there was a tooting behind us. Out I went to see Jaq and Les about to come past. An invitation for a cuppa was called for so they stopped, ‘just for a few minutes’ (yeah, right) and stayed for well over an hour, drinking tea, eating gingernuts and the remains of the chocolate brownie, swapping recipes, laughing. Jaq and I left Les and David to chat among themselves while she took me to see the composting toilet – we are going to get one as the ROI is positive over a 4 year period for 5 months of each year based on a pumpout every 2 weeks. Are you impressed with the business casing done for this purchase? (D & I have agreed it is a higher priority than a solid fuel stove.) David and Les were then down in their engine bay for some reason and discovered much water – a leaking stern gland. Because David appeared carrying our hand pump, I think I can be safe in assuming the guys pumped out most of it so they weren't transporting the canal from one place to another ...
The upshot of the visit was that we are meeting up today at one of their secret moorings (if I tell you, I’ll have to kill you) and we are having dinner on their boat. See, we were originally going to have dinner with them tonight, but we all thought we’d cancelled that because of dinner together two nights in a row between Grafton Regis and Yardley Gobion earlier this week. But Jaq and I were having such a good conversation we decided it needed to be continued – Dale Spender, women’s studies, reflecting men at twice their natural size (Virginia Woolf) … David and Les will not be emotionally safe tonight, but they will be well fed. I guess they can't have everything …
David and I went to the Barley Mow in Cosgrove for dinner last night – the food was lovely and the chardonnay was OK. We crossed the canal through the horse tunnel which has a decided dip in its roof.
|It is only just higher than me|
|I am not sure of it was built skew wiff for a reason - I did wonder about the horse harnesses being on one side or another but the horses would have traversed it in both directions|
|You can see the dip in the roof part way through|
Today I have to replenish the cupboards at Tescos at Wolverton – Barry and Pauline arrive tomorrow night, so plenty of food, nibbles and booze required. We plan to work them hard so need to feel and water them well!