Monday 3 June 2013

A day in port - Hemel Hempstead

It was a peaceful evening with fisher-folk on the opposite side of the canal until dark.  There must be some huge fish in the canal here, we actually see them leap out of the water to grab the insects that hover above the water.  Speaking of dark, Mick's been grumbling because it gets light so early!  We're early birds but 4am is ridiculous.  We're on our way to the longest day now with only 3 weeks to go.

We had a huge pile of rubble to dispose of and rubbish disposal facilities provided for boaters seem few and far between.  It's especially difficult when we stay put for a few days like we will be here.  We remembered that back at the Fishery Inn lock there were bins so this morning Mick decided he was going to lug all the broken tiles the mile back to the bins.  He did it in two trips and on his final return he had company in tow... nb Josephine from Aston Marina.

We knew that Andy and Jean were heading our way but didn't expect they'd catch us up so soon.  They are also going to London for a visit to Paddington Basin.  The boys pulled the boats forward a little so Josephine could be squeezed in behind us.  So now we're a little Aston threesome moored up together.

I was just on my way next door to borrow their shower while Carol sat in bed typing emails. Once we were all sorted we gathered on nb Winton's Folly for a cup of tea for 6.  It was lovely to catch up with Andy and Jean.  They're booked into a marina for the coming weekend while they go to Essex to sort out some family business.  We had a chat about doing our Thames cruising.  Everyone's pretty excited about it.  We still have half a mind to have a go at the "big" bit through the city of London.  Maybe... maybe not.  I don't know where the time goes because when we got back to the boat it was lunchtime!

I've not had the best internet reception at this location and it's made work difficult.  I'll have to catch up during the week now.  It's a shame because being stationary like this is a good time for me to work!

In the afternoon we went to the large shopping area in the town centre.  We bought a different tv aerial at Wilkinsons after returning the B&Q one.  Mick went back to the boat to go on with his shower work and I spent some time browsing.  I'm not much into window shopping at home but it was a good time filler today.  When I returned I put together the new aerial.  It's bigger than we'd prefer but we'd also prefer to get tv reception!  We went from getting 6 channels barely watchable to 130 channels.  Finally success.... and this is supposed to be a bad signal area.

We had another cup of tea for six this afternoon.... this time on nb Josephine.  What an interesting working life Andy must have had as a police dog handler. 

There were some rather drunk fishermen opposite Josephine and as we came back to our boat they were yelling out to turn our engine off as we were disturbing their fish.  Fine line between their drunken fishing and our need for electricity tonight.

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