Intrepid week 1 - a disaster a day!

All Photos



Set off Monday evening. Me, Mike, Adrian, Malcolm and Phil on board, joined following morning by Bjørn. Lovely warm sunny weather all week. Slept well because I could sleep in the living room with Suki beside me. Engine needed repairs Tuesday (5 hours delay) and Wednesday (one hour delay). Suki went missing Thursday - thankfully found safe and well - so boat turned round. One hour wait for Harecastle Tunnel.  Boated long hours. We went through locks quickly and efficiently. Arrived in Northwich, on day of  Royal Wedding, one hour ahead of original schedule for handover - much to Mike's delight, relief and amazement.


Monday 14th May.  Mike had made arrangements to pick up Adrian and Malcolm at 9.30 am at Turnham Green, so I got up at 6 am to walk Suki, pack the car etc on the basis that we would be leaving then. However when he phoned the boatyard it was clear that they were going to be working on it all day and were expecting it would be ready …

Intrepid trip falls at the first hurdle

Once the bank holiday weekend was out of the way our attentions turned to Intrepid which was due to start the following Saturday.

JJ  went down on the bank holiday weekend to get it ready for us – in particular to pump out the sewage tanks from his previous trip (ugh!) – and discovered that the engine was dead! We waited all week while he got the boatyard to check it out and get it fixed – they discovered that it was the head gasket. They had to order a new one and expected to get it on Friday morning and we hoped they would be able to fit it and get the engine running by the end of the day (they don’t work weekends!). So, we had to assume we would be leaving as intended on Saturday morning. I did the packing over the course of the week and prepared the tower donations. On the Thursday Suki and I went on an adventure to purchase pump out cards. Mike should have ordered these online but had failed to do so and it had got too late to get them delivered in time. So I looked up on th…

A beautiful bank holiday

Not a lot happened over the next couple of weeks - just did all the usual things.  The weather was mixed - sometimes sunny and warm sometimes cold and wet.  It is my favourite time of year for the garden as everything is growing - but tidily unlike August when there are dead leaves and flowers to deal with.  Acton park looked beautiful - the rhododendrons were out in profusion, and the moorhen chicks appeared on the pond.  I took some photos of the rhododendrons - and Google stitched them together and sent the result to me a few days later.  It's rather spooky that it can do that but the result was lovely.

I rang a couple of handbell peals - one of Superlative Major on the trebles with Steve, and one of Kent Royal on 7-8 at Guys.

I went to fitness classes, walked the dog, sorted all my digital photos out into albums and deleting the duplicates and ones I didn't want.  I also did my first email mail merge - setting up a gmail address for the london bellringing school and sendin…

Mike gets out, Elora arrives and life gets back to normal

I went back to London on Wednesday afternoon, and had a nice quiet day to myself on Thursday.  Mike had texted to say all was going well - and he had done a beer run to Asda for himself and his roommate so rehab was well under way!

Elora was born to Lee and Emma on Thursday 12th April.

Neville and Beau seem to have taken to her ok - the blanket in the last photo was crocheted by me!  I quickly got the date stitched into a cross stitch I had ready - and I found a few moments the next day to make a card and send it off so it was there soon after they took her home.

I went to Steve's to ring handbells on Friday morning - we attempted a peal of Superlative with Peter B and Peter K (me on 5-6) but it was miscalled.  So we rang a bit more to practice and then I got off to go to Stoke Mandeville to get Mike nice and early.  We got home and had a cup of tea and then it was off to Barnes to ring a QP!  Hammersmith Bob Triples never really got going so we changed to Grandsire and rang a ve…

Home - then back to Devon with Jayne!

I popped back to London on the Tuesday after Easter as Mike was being seen by the consultant the next day and I wanted to be around in case he got a discharge date.  Wayne started on the flat roof as I was leaving - which was good timing (until the weather turned!).

I went to see Mike on the Wednesday and was there for 3 hours - just got back to the car before the 3-hour parking period expired.  Unfortunately I couldn't stay long enough to hear what Derry had to say - although he had appeared on the ward to do his rounds he didn't get to Mike before I left. However Mike texted later to say that the dressing was now off and he would be off the hot air bed on Friday and sitting in the chair on Monday.  Great news - and also the easiest for me logistically as I could now take Jayne straight to Devon after picking her up at Heathrow the next day.

Thursday was the hottest day of the year so far, with lots of sunshine and blue skies. I spent the morning doing enough shopping to see …

A brief trip home

Clearing the drive had been a really good idea - the sun came out again the next morning and although it had little effect on the deep snow, it melted all the patches of ice on the drive and dried it up so that getting out later was not a problem.  I took Suki for another long walk in Parke from the house before setting off for London, via Jay's for lunch.

I got to Jay's house just after 1 pm - Suki dragged me through the garden and into the house, and then promptly peed on the carpet!  I don't know if it was the smell of cat or just excitement.  Jay produced a nice lunch of homemade soup, rolls, quiche and salad - and a cup of her nice strong coffee to finish.  Certainly helped break up the journey - and I didn't need to eat a single sweet.  Must be a record.

It was funny being in the house on my own - strangely quiet.  I made a lot of progress on admin and paperwork and I finished putting the Barnes QPs since the fire on Bell Board.  I went to see Mike on Wednesday a…

Devon - and more snow!

When I arrived in Devon from Stoke Mandeville it was positively springlike - the sun was shining and the birds were singing and it was just beautiful.  I forgot to unset the alarm when I went in, and was drawn to go out in to the back garden as it was so lovely and sunny - at which point the alarm went off!!

The following day I saw rain was forecast and got out early for a nice long walk in the plantation - the rain started at 10.30 and it hammered down all day resulting in lots of flooding and everywhere for walking is now a muddy boggy mess. I spent the rest of the afternoon doing the final paperwork on Mary's estate.  I was not impressed with the Tell Us Once service we were offered by the Registrar when registering Mary's death.  There was a council tax bill for Mary when I got here and when I phoned to query it they stated they had not received any notification.  When I telephoned HMRC to enquire what was happening with the income tax refund, they wouldn't tell me any…