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Steppin’ out; a few plans and thoughts before the maiden voyage.

Yes I’ve just about recovered from my days outing and I am getting quite excited and nervous as the day of reckoning approaches. The survey is Monday and I really hope it goes through with out any real issues then my crew member and me will go up the following Sunday to bring her back home after parting with a sizable amount of money.

I do realise that it won’t all be simple unadorned nautical travelling with wind assistance but we are both fairly laid back and will take it has it comes. Steve has slightly less experience of boats and canals than I have, we will need blessings from above in abundance, and due to the stoppage near Dutton we shall have to go into Manchester to pick up the Macclesfield and then back to the Trent and Mersey below the stoppage.

The first bit on the map, the Bridgewater canal has no locks, so we should make good time and reach the end by Sunday night. This is the plan anyway, however the next little bit, 16 miles down to the Macclesfield canal seems to have approximately 852,624 locks, so day two may see us gain a little experience on the locking front. Is it possible to do all of them in one day, I think there is 44, or will we need to moor up for the night while going through Manchester.

Does anyone have any suggestions of good places for mooring on this part of the journey? I’m guessing some parts are not always friendly. Information on this would be very useful. Also any hints tips on doing so many locks in such a short space, we will be swapping over frequently and seeing what comes.

I’m beginning to feel like a teenager again and I know when I pick the boat up I’m going to have an enormouse stupid grin but I don’t care. I haven’t felt this excited and enthusiastic about something for many years. My advice to anyone who finds something which makes them feel alive again whether it’s boats or knitting then go for it because I guess we’ve all spent far too long bored and fed up with our lives and the society we have to live. Lets take on the world like we wanted to do when we stupid teenagers, this is the Weston’s organic still cider talking now, two pints counts as one of your five a day. If you have children start behaving in ways that make them nervous and worry, they did it to you.

I will definitely update Monday with the results of the survey so I hope you all have a good weekend and we see a bit of the sun too.

God bless you


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Our Nige

55 years old. I work in registered care as a care assistant and have my house up for sale and when sold will be buying a narrowboat of some kind to live on. Been a bit of a dream of mine for many years. Don't know for certain if I'll like it but I'm really looking forward to it and think that I will. I have been looking at boats and reading and talking to people over the last 6 to 9 monts and sometimes I feel like I might know what layout I want. I will be on a restricted budget of about 25 to 35k and will be looking for advice and tips to help me make a fair start on the water.