Thursday, 23 September 2021

 Hi Everyone 

Lets face it Winters on its way , everyday here more geese are flying off to their winter roosts the tree's are changing colour and shredding their foliage, nights are closing in  And we are having a jetty /mooring make over. the original mooring was just about done for. Whilst we were away Barry our next door neighbour actually fell through his, it made a right mess of his leg.  Anyway ours is now well underway and looking very smart. We have had to vacate the mooring whilst the makeover was in progress only 20 yards away but it does feel odd, its like living in your neighbours house watching people work on yours, very strange. All being well I will put Buggerlugs back in her rightful place tomorrow and then I have the awful task of sorting out the jetty and tidying up I think it will take a few trips to the tip because not only have we had the jetty revamped we have made the mooring bigger (by magic ) 

On the whole everything is looking good and we are still enjoying the life style, we are lucky we can ignore all the miserable buggers that constantly moan about the cost of boating and the hard work looking after a boat I tell them its simple if you are not happy SOD OFF and go back on land and take your miserable attitude with you. People don't expect that reply and apparently I have upset some people? But I stand by it if your not happy move you cannot go through life being miserable its to short.

As the Covid restrictions are still relaxed Buggerlugs is open for visits afternoon tea is a specialty and the fishing is good 

God Bless Stay safe  


New decking down. Its a reformed material strong and non slip it makes the Jetty look bigger ??


 

Wednesday, 22 September 2021

 

Buggerlugs is now HMS BUGGERLUGS

 We cracked it, on what was Im sure the hottest day of the year. It started out ok I suppose we had to go down the first two locks which under normal circumstances would have been a simple 10 / 15 mins But as the centre had just opened and was full of Gongooslers the lock keeper shouts "There is a boat going down the locks we will give a talk on what is happening jut follow me ) I said to this leader of men "this is Buggerlugs we dont do everything  the proper way we are a bit unconventional, But he just smiled and asked me politely not to ram the gates or sink the boat   as there are children watching. everything was going well Noreen was doing her bit getting the kids to work the gates until the last lock I was given the all clear to leave the lock I tried twice but she wouldnt budge I shouted but nobody was listening as the lecture was just being concluded So I sounded my Claxton, walked along my roof to the sharp end and Yelled  " will someone shift that Bloody tree trunk out of my way" this caught everyone attention and after 4/5 mins a plan was adopted by the now very attentive crowd ( They could smell excitement, blood the possibility of a boat sinking the plan was for one to stand on my bow on my bloody highly polished bow in BOOTS! using MY Barge pole ??after a short interlude were I told him how it WAS going to work, He would use my pole from within the cratch his two co-workers would manoeuvre the tree trunk from canal side AND I would direct operations from my captains position within mins, much to the disappointment of the now quite large crowd buggerlugs had extradited herself from the lock. I love a bit of fun !!!!!and I don't mind taking command after all its my boat.

OK once that was over we had 45 mins to wait for the swing bridge to be opened the last lock to be worked then it was off we go. However before you are allowed on the MSC (Manchester Ship Canal) you have to report in to Port control who control all shipping on the MSC.. Now when I spoke to them yesterday he was very happy to let us go as there was nothing in his diary ) arrrr yes buggerlugs I forgot about you hang on 10 mins I have two ships  coming past you when the last one passes you get behind her not to close but dont worry they are docking in another mile. So off we go once the two had dock I could see the waterway in front was blocked" by another large vessel and two more tugs just then my phone rings as you are in constant communication with port control I was told to hang off ?? as the two tugs were turning the ship round from where I was it looked like the big ship was eating the two little tugs anyway after 35 min treading water one tug shot passed me with thumbs up so I then shot through the smallest of gaps passed the other tug that was still being eaten by the big ship. OK another message from Port control they were happy for Buggerlugs to continue, Yet after another 40 min I had another phone call all port control it just said  "look to your stern" all I said was "oh SHIT " I had a rather large boat wanting to overtake. i asked where the f--- did they come from ? port control replied quickly find a safe Anchorage to let him pass.  I did just that I pulled to the side, but staying in enough water and pointed my bow into the on coming wake otherwise flat bottomed narrow boats could capsize. when we had recovered from that ordeal I was contacted again from port Control saying I had one ship 1.5 miles to my stern and one ship just ahead of me leaving its birth in Runcorn so he requested I give buggerlugs everything she has as my turn off was not that away so for the next 30 mins with Buggerlugs running her little heart out and keeping a close eye out for bandits ahead and to the rear "WE RAN FOR HOME " Im very glad I had done a aerial survey of the Marsh lock and made my own map. for I now knew once I pass the farm buildings and wind turbines on my starboard  I am ready to start my turn off the MSC and onto he Weaver and Marsh lock with about 10 mis to spare before the two ships passed I informed Port control that I was now off the main shipping lane. Im not sure who was more relieved me or them they did say it was unusual to have that much traffic on late booking but hey we are all here to tell the tale and what a tale 


Just got off the water before this one passed
I thought if I dressed like this I could get passed the immigration at Runcorn 
they are use to seeing people like this  I might even get a house 


The first sight of Marsh lock 

the Tugs have just pushed this accross they have left me a small 
gap so I had to go for it.

Being overtaken by this bugger was FUN

GOD BLESS EVERYONE 




Comments

  1. Any feed back is better than non even if if more pics and less chat you know you cant offend me God Bless

    REPLY
    1. Very exciting journey Al it a wonder you

Monday, 20 September 2021

Settled in again

 


Hi Everyone 

Having been back now for three weeks and listening to the tales of the other boaters who took the opportunity and went out cruising. all seem to have had the same experience with the canals and that is the canals are in a deplorable state, We I say we because the boaters I have spoken to all say the same. the canals are slowly being choked with weed and reeds many places you can not get two boats passed each other the navigation is so narrow and the banks are that overgrown with weeds and bushes it is difficult moor without doing a hour of weed and bush clearing. CRT have closed many service stops so water is in short supply and rubbish is difficult to dispose of. 

Also the Boaters have changed in fact so much so that I have now divided the boating fraternity  into to camps and called them Boaters and Floaters.

 Boaters are the old type of boater who live on their boat take great pride in their boat, cruise the waterways and embrace the boating life style of a gentle slow pace of life no pretentiousness willing to share and and give a helping hand 

Floaters buy a boat because they have either seen a tv programme and thought it was trendy thing to do but then find out its not as romantic as these programmes make out also its not easy to do a full time job and cruise so you become a person who just lives on a boat, they also do not understand the restrictions that come with living on a boat. The other type of floater is those who think its going to be cheaper then discover that the initial outlay may be cheaper but the running costs and maintenance are a continuous drain  on available funds. of course you do not have to continually maintain your boat ? However cruising the system you notice so many boats moored along the canal that obviously have no services and the boats have never moved in fact some look as if they have been so poorly maintained that they couldn't move if they wanted to.  Yes that type of life style would be cheaper but so much harder. These floaters also cannot seem to adapt to the basics of life afloat and adapt to the slower less ostentatious life style they had and are continually in a rush. I know I said they never cruise well the odd times they do cruise they are in a rush they come up behind you and complain you are not moving  fast enough or steal your water and never slow down when passing moored boats, my answer is if you are in a hurry get a camper van.  No matter how many TV programmes are shown of this idyllic Life style (which in the main it is ) though its not for everyone, But if you want to buy a boat now is the time to do it as the market is flooded with them, mainly due to the over production and  those who realised that boating was the wrong choice of getting rid of £100.000+  

BUT hey we still love the life we have adapted and settled in to it,  we are now after 14 years accepted experienced boaters. Noreen can do a set of locks faster than anyone I know and I can spin Buggerlugs around on a sixpence. We have both learnt to be economical with space and as Noreen quite rightly says its less to clean.  I believe we are both fitter an healthier due to our life style. What more could you ask of retirement. 

Since arriving back I have been inundated with jobs, I have now a shed full of panels awaiting to be painted with castles  and roses and other objects enough work to keep me occupied through the winter.

Stay safe everyone this Covid isn't over yet its the wolf at the door never trust anything you cant spell? The facts speak for themselves.

Time now to start preparing for Christmas   

GOD BLESS    STAY SAFE .


                                            Just a few of the panel's  I am painting These are all sanded ,varnished,and ready for painting one painting can take two days allowing for the drying between stages BIG JOB 

Friday, 6 August 2021

Home and Away

 Well another Cruising season completed and we are once again back in Rufford on our home Mooring, Even though this year our travels didn't take us any great distance it still provided us with Adventure the adventure of almost every day waking up in a new location Meeting new people experiencing new Idea's, new Places and if you are sensible everyday becomes a learning day.


You know when you go on holiday and you say like most people do “Great Holiday but its nice to be home “ Well what if you take your home with you. The Association I belong to has a motto “Home is where you Boat is” I have discovered that when you cruise in your Home you boat takes on a new persona it becomes a different object no longer is your Home its now your mode of transport that need looking after maintaining, constantly considering in everything you do Water, Fuel, Oil, Power all these elements become part of your life, as they do when on permanent moorings but here they are in the main “on tap” when cruising you literally have to find them.

The Boat becomes part of your journey like any explorer who looks after his equipment without which you would not get very far or have time to enjoy every day of your Journey. My experience with HMF and travelling across the vast expanse of Australia is the same to enjoy the ride you must have faith in your equipment and take care of it be adaptable to change and meet every challenge with a smile and determination Maybe all that adds to the excitement of cruising. That may sound as if its hard work and not a holiday but then you have to consider what is a holiday? That is something only each individual can answer As for me Im not for lying on a beach.


However thats us done for this year back to Buggerlugs now being transformed into our home Inside and outside look the same except the top boxes full of Spares, Ropes, fenders, engine parts and safety equipment have all now been stowed away in the sheds for next season. We are once again plugged into the electricity supply and no longer have to rely on Batteries, solar panels , and alternators for power. No longer do we have to consider how long we have telle on for or when we can use the washer, Toaster, Micro-wave or any other power guzzling device. But that is part of Cruising if it was easy it would loose its excitement and charm.


When we arrived back yesterday we had 4 hours hacking our way through a jungle of a garden we had Lilly stems 5 ft tall they must have given a wonderful display, this year everything seems to have gone mad with growth I think today will be spent just tidying and putting away I hate untidiness I am possibly on the spectrum for that?


All the same its nice to be Home 

Even better now as we can share our home and accept visitors 

Saturday, 19 June 2021

Boating for real Boaters

 This is now going to be my new Blog just for boaters Please no floaters it is purely for people who use their boat for boating not just living on I have no idea why people buy a boat and only sit in a marina or even worse on a linear mooring on the side of the canal blocking Bridge Holes. Winding Holes, Lock moorings and Swing Bridges they are a blood menace and CRT ARE DOING NOTHING ABOUT THEM 

Now Im not against people using their boat as a weekend retreat of a floating home lets face they are paying the same as boaters and keeping the cost our licence fees down I only wish they would not call themselves Boaters, tell me Im doing it wrong, moor up for two years in ridiculous places, and worst of all write boating Blogs.    

Today I passed Black Prince hire boats on the T&M Which is like a slalom course. right after that there is a private Moorings sign, so permission must have been granted by CRT the Bridge has one boat 30ft away from the entrance and one boat 30ft from the exit after negotiating that there are 18 moored  boats as there is weeds growing around the mooring pins I take it they have been there for years and not doing any real harm to anyone except now with the cut back in CRT maintenance reeds have taken over a good 1/3 of the canal, moored boats taking  a third leaving a third for passing traffic. I wonder when the licences for private mooring was granted did anyone from CRT actually go and LOOK at the site or just grated the licence after consulting a map after all its just money to them.

However its not all complaints I traveled from Leigh to Preston Brook on the Bridgwater and you could moor where ever you wanted (as long as it was safe to do so ) Tow path banks were clear of weeds, and large vegetation Obviously the Voles on the Bridgewater live on the opposite bank unlike the Voles on the CRT canals they all seem to live on the towpath side 

YOU have got a the general idea of the site and that I am not CRT favourite Boater 

         

Saturday, 17 August 2019

Down on the River Weaver

Hi
With the help of friends we set off last Sunday after Mass Now we have a fair idea of what we are doing on Boats it only took us three days to get down to the Weaver I know it can be done quicker but we are getting old and need our beauty sleep.Th =is was only ever meant to be a quick 2 weeks to give Buggerlugs a run and to keep us in mind of what British boating is about after 10 weeks in Australia I want to know if I could remember what to do???

Well we made it down onto the Weaver something went astray at the bottom of the lift so we were kept waiting almost and hour and half that meant by the time we got down most of the very limited moorings were gone But with a bit of juggling we got in on the far end end of the Northwich wall. We then spent 48 hrs. sheltering from what ever God wanted to through at us: thunder, hail gales rain in torrents it just kept coming. By the time this morning came around we were almost out of water. I decided to do an early move to the water station. What I did not fore see was that that the rain over the mast 48 hours had now descended down from the Derbyshire hills along the Cheshire planes using the River Dane as a culvert which pours into the River Weaver 20 yards from where we were moored So to get to the water station you have to cross this deluge of water now running at about 20kph and Moor up on a brick wall. Well to say it was difficult would be and understatement I know all you boaters are saying that I should have gone up stream turn around and approached heading into the water flow. Yes I know the procedure but I considered the facts and turning a 60ft boat around in a 20kmp river did not appear to be the best option so I managed to get along side jumped with the rope and lashed it over a bollard GREAT FUN RECOMMEND IT TO EVERYONE AT 08.00 ON A SATURDAY MORNING We are again nicely moored up on a floating jetty very cosy Sun shining but the river I think is even faster than this morning. So fast I cant go fishing I have not got a big enough Ledger to get the bait down its that fast. thats it now nothing at all to do (thats why Im writing to you lot

Take care GB
BUGGERLUGS


Saturday, 13 July 2019

its still raining

Well we are back in the metropolitan borough of Runaway bay Having now given it nearly two weeks to stop raining, Bit of a tall tale it hasnt rained all the time but even when it wasn't it was blowing a gale. we made the best of it and headed inland where it was supposed to be better I asked better than what?? these days of enforced laziness has helped me hone my Australian diving techniques I hate automatics and basically thats all they have here anyway the thing to do is drive as though you are in London or like an Audi driver that way you blend in with all the other learner drivers (because I am positive that 80% of the drivers here haven't passed their test  the other confusing issue is that they love painting white lines at junctions which I am also sure nobody quite understands what they are for..  So with my driving skills now vastly improved we decided to head up north where we were informed that weather would be better we decided on a place called Birtinya just south of Noosa which is like our Blackpool actually its rather a beautiful sea side resort that has everything for a family holiday and as we decided to go in the middle of school holidays need I say any more. it would appear that the whole of the east coast of Australia take this holiday north to get them ready to face the riggers of the winter??  from Melbourne to Sydney they all come up here.
We have an apartment here for the week and just traveling about being a tourist. We came here quite a few years ago drove from Brisbane to Cairns that was a long drive about three days if I remember so we seem  to remember certain places but it has really changed its very much the big tourist attraction type of resort but very nice, they know how to look after the tourists in Australia.
Heading back down the Bruce Highway tomorrow back to Runaway bay the gales have gone so we may get some fishing in. On our way back south on the Bruce Highway are the "Glass Mountains" I have driven past them twice now and never actually been there so Tomorrow we have a 10am checkout that means we have time for a visit , in fact I will save publishing this until I have some pics.
The Glass House Mountains are a group of thirteen hills that rise abruptly from the coastal plain on the Sunshine Coast. The highest hill is Mount Beerwah at 556 metres above sea level, but the most identifiable of all the hills is Mount Tibrogargan which from certain angles bears a resemblance to a face staring east towards the ocean. The Volcanic peaks of the Glass House Mountains rise dramatically from the surrounding Sunshine Coast landscape. They were formed by intrusive plugs, remnants of volcanic activity that occurred 26-27 million years ago. All I can say now is wow they look impressive from the highway though a good 20k away but 
when you actually get there its just wow.
Thats it really two weeks left here and in that time I have to catch that illusive big fish go Whale watching 
Visit Tambourine Mountain and Spingbrook falls have two birthdays mine and my sister-in -laws and pack 
Easy for experienced travelers I wonder what I will forget
God Bless 
Maloolaba head good fishing
Noosa Beach kids are off school
from the Glasshouse Mountains

8 years ago I took the same photo in the same place (weird)
They say locals rarely see them as they are very shy 


Glass house mountains 

Maloollaba beach (dont know the children but it make a good picture

Noosa river again good fishing 
Noreen having found (and walked me to) another water fall NO FISHING lol