Lived on-board Hadar

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Tuesday, January 05, 2010

Happily frozen in.

What a first few days of 2010 we have had. Like 99% of the UK we are experiencing below freezing temperatures and are frozen in at Market Harborough still. This is going to be our third week here, which is the longest we have ever stayed anywhere due to the weather. The overnight temperatures have been getting down to -7c, so it is freezing with a capital F. Still we could be in a worse place. We are lucky we have all we need here, including some grateful customers who we are supplying with coal, kindling, firelighters and toilet blue.
Our Year began with staying up to see the New Year in onboard with a tot of whiskey each. Just what is called for in this weather. There were fireworks going off all around us announcing the start of 2010. So goodbye to the noughties.

Apart from delivering coal to customers, we have a few customers who have been happily coming to us by car.

So how did our New Year start well, Keith dropped his glasses into the cut. They fell in whilst bending over to do up the sheeting strings after a coal delivery. So first major expense of the year was to go down to Specsavers and order himself two new pairs of glasses. They are on a 2 for 1 offer at the moment, so now at least he has a spare pair. I also needed to get my eyes tested again after just a year, as I have been having problems with my glasses. It turned out that I did need a new prescription, so yet more expense. Thankfully just one pair of lenses for me.

But you cannot put a prices on your eyesight can you?

Keith has collected his glasses today, so he can see what he is doing now. Oh the price of getting old. Mine are not ready yet.

After the shock of paying for our glasses, we decided what the heck, so went out for a lovely Indian meal at Shagorika, in Market Harborough. It was one of the finest Indian meals we have ever had and the service was very good as well. We came out of there with pleasantly full tummies, and a 10% voucher off a future meal, valid until the 16th January.... Dang that means we will have to go back again, now that's a shame. The hope is we may take friends with us next time. They also gave us a 2010 calender and a pen. We must have been very good customers lol.
I was in need of a hair cut, but as I only ever have a dry cut, I am always horrified at what hair salons want to charge. They seem to range from £12.95 at Supercuts, to high street salons that will charge anything up to £40 for five minutes work. So before committing myself, I did walk around a few to see what their prices were. I managed to find one where I could have a dry cut for £15 if I got there for 1.45pm, after that they would charge me £25. Flippin cheek I reckon, so I made sure I was there just before 1.45pm to have another 4 inches cut off the length of my hair. Back in August I had 5 inches taken off, so now my hair has become more manageble. I now feel light headed.

Yesterday I rang around our customers that we have been unable to supply coal to during this freeze in, to make sure they were all ok for coal, which thankfully they are. They can get to us if need be, so I can stop worrying about them now, as I do feel guilty if we cannot make it to them. Paddy had a dodgy tummy and was sick on our back cabin rag rug. To get it clean I had to take it into the shower and scrub it. The problem now is getting it dry, as it is incredibly heavy when wet. I managed to man handle it on to the line in the engine room, where it is drying slowly. The problem now is getting rid of the sicky smell which is still around. I may have to buy something to get rid of the odour once it is dry. Because of this Paddy did not get any dinner last night, so he spent the evening sulking.

Hadar has a large water tank, which means we can go almost 3 weeks before we have to fill up, so yesterday I thought it would be a good idea to fill the tank, as snow was forecast. It took me two attempts to defrost the water tap, but eventually the water was flowing into the tank. In all it took over an hour to fill her up as the flow was extremely slow. It meant I got the chance to chat to passing walkers and watch the ducks and swans in the tiny pool they have to swim in by the boat.

Do ducks feel the cold?

So we are ok now for a while, and I can get some washing done.

We also noticed yesterday that we were beginning to list, so I moved some coal in the hold to get the balance right, but to no avail. On closer inspection Keith noticed that the water level had dropped by as much as 4 inches and we were grounded.

This morning I rang British Waterways, to be told they were already on the case. It appears there is a leak somewhere. We thought we would try and move the boat out a bit from the bank, so Keith went out and broke some of the ice a longside the boat, but despite all our pushing Hadar was not for moving. So we fired her up and she coughed into life, but only on one cylinder, which was not good. Eventually she began to fire on both cylinders, but it was not enough grunt to move Hadar from the bank, so we gave up on that and as I type it appears we are more on the level now, which is wonderful, as we feel like we are constantly running up hill lol.

The final job of the day for us has been to take down our Christmas decorations. As always the boat looks very bare now. The tree lights packed up over Christmas, so Keith is now trying to fix them. I am now wondering what the next few days will bring. Probably more ice and some snow yippee. I just love this weather.


CapricornWoman said...

Lovely photo of the big freeze there!

Just as long as you are both keeping well and warm :)

Keith Lodge said...

Oh we are toasty warm on Hadar, hope all is well with you too.