Learn about life afloat the easy way

Life on a narrowboat can be as peaceful as it is idyllic BUT you need to understand the pros, cons, highs, lows, and day to day logistics in living on England's inland waterways. Let me help you find out all you need to know before you commit to what could be a very expensive mistake.


Find out more
10

Winter pleasures

Frosty morn 12 Jan 14 027My first winter afloat and  so far it’s not been a really cold one but still it is a test of coping with the dark nights in a confined space and keeping warm.

Keeping warm? Friends still ask if it’s cold on a boat and I suppose it’s a fair question seeing how we are sat upon the Frosty morn 12 Jan 14 108water in a steel tube but the truth is from the other direction. I’m sat here with my fire just ticking over and it’s showing 21C on the thermometer. I must admit when looking at boats I wasn’t to bothered if it had a coal fire or not but now I’m in the midst of winter and have got the hang of keeping the fire in for 14 hours or sometimes a little more when I’m at work and how much better it warms up the boat than the gas central heating I would certainly recommend one to anyone buying a boat to live on.

Frosty morn 12 Jan 14 029I know there haven’t been too many frosty mornings but when you step out or open the curtains and the jetties are covered in frost and the sunrise is lighting the sky it is really a joy to behold. Even opening the canopy at 5 am to go to work there have been mornings when I’ve looke up at the stars and the moon shining on the water and realised I am one lucky man and it’s still a pleasure and a privilege come home sometimes and just stop and look out over the marina and think “I live here. This is my home”.

I nearly got knocked over by a kingfisher as I was walking on the jetty to my boat and it just flew past me and shot off. They really are a wonder to behold and this one is a regular visitor to the marina. The colours are just so vivid.

I don’t think there has been much that has got me down, maybe a little down with being in a small space with the Frosty morn 12 Jan 14 076curtains closed and seeing no real daylight when I’m working. I work 4 on and 4 off doing 12 hour shifts. However the days off are great to get a few jobs done. I’ve just installed a new LED light fitting to replace one of my old 2D flourescen tubes which are starting to act up a little and be a bit dim. They might be the original fittings I think from 20 years ago when she was built.

Frosty morn 12 Jan 14 108It’s a bit frightening really this DIY stuff has I’ve avoided it and never wanted to have anything to do with it till now and yet I’m starting to look at jobs and think well I might have a go at that and then spending time thinking how to accomplish it. I talk to people about these things and learn what I can from their wealth of good ideas.

I’ve learned more this year about engines and stoves and windows and lighting and other mysterious stuff than I ever did in 10 of my previous years. It may continue too as it does also save you some money. Never a bad thing is that.

Right time to pout another whisky and then an early night and see what tomorrow brings.

Take care out there.

Nige

 

Useful Information
Entertainment
Summary
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.

Comments