Monday, July 07, 2008

Publish and be damned!
IRIS is featured in the latest edition of A Home Afloat by Gary Cookson (ISBN 9780713688771). Buy it now while stocks last etc.

Friday, May 16, 2008

Little Venice - again
I'm fairly sure Mary will one day realise that there is in fact a bigger Venice, but until then, let the cheap mini-breaks roll! We were planning to take IRIS into town on the first weekend in May when I recalled that it was probably the same weekend as the canal cavalcade. I figured the best way to ensure a mooring was to weasel my way in. A quick call to the organisers confirmed there was space so we were all set.

Due to a delayed departure, we didn't get down there until 10:00pm, there was quite a lot of activity, and I've not really steered the boat at night when there are so many other boats moving around. We stopped to ask for guidance, as there were no moorings left, but they helpfully said we could stay where we were until the morning. We had to be gone by 9:00am as the space was needed for a historic working boat pair. This was the spot we had, I'd not yet had a coffee, so possibly thats why I'm looking a bit unhappy.

We found a mooring in Paddington basin, pretty much in the same place as New Years.
Saturday was spent looking around. Friends came down to visit for the afternoon, Bex and JP, Luci and Aaron and Greg and Helen. We sat around on IRIS drinking G&Ts and attempting to feed the ducks. Saturday night, Mary and I went to Brixton to see the Wombats, but we got bored after about half their set, so left to get a drink.

On Sunday Celine popped down to have a look around and managed to force a G&T down. On sunday evening there was the illuminated boat parade which was quite good fun. Some people made a real effort, but the best was a group of pensioners on a tiny narrowboat that had more lights on it than a Vegas casino.

On monday my sister and her family dropped in. The boys enjoyed various activities, mainly lunch and eating ice cream. They even got to go for a little ride on IRIS as I dropped them down to the end of Paddington basin.

After that, I was on my way. Mary was walking along the towpath for a while, so took some pictures of me leaving the pool at Little Venice.

On the way back we saw our neighbours from Willowtree Marina, Deep Thought 42. This was near Kensal Rise, just as I'd got a massive bit of plastic wound round the prop. I'm just about to cut in front of them so I could remove the weedhatch and take it off.

The rest of the trip back was pretty unventfull, just some nice cruising along.

Finally it was back to Willowtree.

There probably won't be too many more updates on this site, we're spending more time on getting Misterton ready.

IRIS is up for sale, if anyone wants a characterful narrowboat on a secure mooring in West London, contact Willowtree Marina

Monday, April 28, 2008

Boat 2.0
I only put that title in for cabin boy Mat, as he loves version numbers. :)

One of the reasons I've not posted much this year is that we've been looking for a bigger boat to make our home.

Here it is.

Big isn't it?
Coot Update
I was out at the boat today for about five minutes and noted that the coots have built an even bigger nest in the tire and there are four or five eggs in there now.

My question is - where are moon unit 1&2?

Tuesday, April 15, 2008

Grand Designs

It seems everything can be a home to someone. In the case of a coot, the tyre that keeps IRIS off the dock is actually the basis for a family haven. We've been tip toe-ing around and trying to keep the noise down lest we disturb them.

There are two eggs under there and I'm already thinking of names. Current favorites are 'Moon-unit 1 and Moon-unit 2' or 'Dunlop and Pirelli'.

The bird looks unimpressed.

Monday, March 31, 2008


It came pretty early this year, in fact I'm sure I read somewhere that there is only one other time it could possibly be earlier. I'd been looking forward to going out on IRIS for a little trip for some time, but the weather wasn't the best.

Each day I'd wake up, check the weather report and then we'd go and do something else as it was just going to be horrible.

Finally on Easter monday I just had to get out. We left the marina in heavy snow and this pretty much set the pattern for the trip. I was going to turn around at Bulls Bridge (about 2 miles from the marina) but of course, it brightened up long enough for me to think it was going to be alright. Predictably, when I'd turned up the Grand Union, it started sleeting again.

By the time we got back, I'd not been that cold since my motorcycling days. Mary sensibly spent most of the trip inside by the diesel stove, reading. :)

Saturday, March 01, 2008

Tom Waits

............for the bus

Nice shot of me and my nephew Tom, on our way to the zoo with the others this afternoon in London. If this can't tempt Dave Williams into commenting, then I don't know what will.

Friday, February 29, 2008

Still here...
Been a busy few weeks with work, snowboarding and working on the boat v2.0 project.
Apropo nothing, here is a small Austrian locomotive that is going nowhere soon.