Sunday 31 July 2016

Conscience cleared... and a shiny tap!

At the moment, my head is SO full of random boat (and I suppose 'non-boat') related "stuff" that I'm finding it hard to organise things into any logical order.  Not the end of the world I suppose and I'm sure it will be a temporary phase - I hope so at least.  The medication I'm taking is making me rather short tempered... perhaps even a bit aggressive.  Not physically so but my patience is at an all time low and 'snappy' doesn't even come close lol.

That said, in amongst all the piffle , on Friday morning I did make a decision re. the recently exited tenant... I called her GP practice (also mine as it happens) and discussed her with the practice manager.   To give her fair credit, she said she was taking notes and we agreed I'd email them the photos I took of the flat AND  that on Monday morning, I'd pop in to drop off the "hoarded" medication -(some of which dated back to 2004) and have a chat with whichever doctor was available when I turn up.  I know they can't discuss her with me - to be honest, from the paperwork I've seen enough of her dreadfully troubled life to write up my own version of her case history as it is... anyway - I don't want to know anything from them... just perhaps, fill in some blanks for them.

Sometimes when you can't decide what to do, doing nothing is the right thing.  This was one of those occasions when I couldn't leave things ... in fact, I was awake thinking about the wretched woman at 2.50 on Friday morning.  I know it might be seen to be interfering - and I hate it when people do that as a rule but on reflection, my conscience has settled and even if she doesn't appreciate the interference (she may well never even know anyway) her life MIGHT begin to stabilise if she gets some help.

It would be nice to say that puts an end to this particular saga - However, on Friday afternoon I got a phone call from the office to say this woman had turned up wanting to know where her "stuff" is.  Apparently she was apologetic for not having cleared the place out and offered to pay an additional weeks rent and any cleaning costs.   It's reported she was sitting there, trembling and clearly not in a good place.    I explained that anything covered in maggots had been disposed of and her personal papers, clothing items and a couple of other salvageable boxes were left in a trunk outside the flat door.   I presume she'll have collected what she could and will find out tomorrow morning when I nip in to do a bit of painting...  I hope she has left the boxes of meds. - so I can at least take close up photos of them... in case the doc thinks I'm the one making things up!

ANYWAY -  back to boaty stuff.

You may remember a few weeks ago, I got a good deal on the "touch-lights" from Aten lighting (  - When they arrived, I put them to one side.
 The other day, I thought I'd take one out and test the power consumption.  They purport to be 2 watt.

When connected up they draw .17amp - which is about right... mathematically they should be drawing 0.16amp but I'm not going to worry about 0.01amp - SEE ... I can be chilled ;-)

Btw- if you're in the market for some "touch- DIMMABLE" ones (ours are just the touch ones) they are doing a deal at the moment when you buy 5 or more down from 13.99 to 10.99 - I've no affiliation with them, other than being a satisfied customer.  They're here if you fancy a look .... they do use a little more power at 3watt each so that's worth bearing mind.

ALSO  this week, we found a kitchen sink (shallow depth) on offer at Wickes (20% online discount) AND by phoning them, I was also able to use my normal 10% trade discount ... so that was another good saving.

Its not the snazziest thing in the world but it does come with a waste kit and is quite slim at only 435mm wide.  It'll be fine.  

I also spotted a tap on offer in screw fix when I was buying some stuff for work,  which we both actually quite liked... I've learned that when we DO agree on something, it's best to get it there and then!

It's high enough to fill a kettle without dunking the base in the (usually full) washing up bowl.  I did have a bit of a worry about operating pressure - it has a sticker on the box saying MINIMUM operating pressure of 1.5 bar...  I have no idea how powerful the water-pump the builder will be fitting is.  LUCKILY - we are fortunate to have made friends with a really helpful couple who bought a boat last year from the same place and they were kind enough to look at theirs to confirm it's rated at 25psi (1.7bar)...  A bit close but fingers crossed it will work... if not, this tap may end up replacing the one at home!  One thing that is good about it though (aesthetics a side) is the mounting method - FROM above rather than below.

One last thing (we're heading out for a Sunday morning hike) -  Andy took a video of our first walk around the boat last weekend on his phone.. I've uploaded it to you-tube rather than here as it was quite large.  It's a bit shaky but it will be handy to look back on when the boat is finished.

Until next time...

Thursday 28 July 2016

Mental Health and rear steps...

It's OK - the 2 are not linked... 

Today I've had the most unpleasant task of clearing out a flat I rent out.  Tenants are a pain.  Not all of them, but over the past 10 years or so, from time to time we get a bad un.  In today's case, what started off as an angry feeling on opening the door, soon turned into a feeling of sadness for the wretched soul who lived like this

The photo doesn't look too bad I'll grant you but what you can't see is the vile smell of vomit and maggots... Vomit either side of the sleeping bag and maggots worming their way through decaying food left in the kitchen.... the pupa with their horrible cargo waiting to emerge or the swarm of adults that awaited me .

As I went through into the kitchen - trying NOT to wretch, I was met with this

On opening a cupboard I also found the following stash of empties

THEN it all made sense.

People have their demons I know - I've got mine... but for the most part, I wear them on my sleeve and that way, (I feel at least) those around me can help and support if they feel so inclined. 

The woman who lived here, to me at least, simply seemed a bit highly strung but appeared to all intents and purposes "normal".  She' was highly qualified - (compared to me anyway) with a phd in economics and had been a lecturer at Leeds Uni at some time or other.    She'd given her months notice on the right day in June which expired on 24th July... hence me going in to take a look having not received the keys back or being able to get in contact with her on the phone.

In amongst the clutter, were piles of personal and financial paperwork.  She has been keeping up to date with her bills, receives various benefits, has a good bank balance - although she HAS left credit and debit cards in amongst the detritus.    Some of the bags contained Marks & Spencer food items - un opened...  the fridge also contained lots of what we'd class as posh food - dated May and mostly mouldy.  At first as I filled the bin liners full of decaying food I was angry with her.  Angry she could leave such an awful mess for someone else to clean up after.  Angry that whilst I'm out at work doing silly hours each week, she is off up and down the country on "days out"  (evidenced by train tickets) and bags containing expensive chocolates and the like.  

As I then moved on to paper work  (I'm saving you from the gory details in regards the aforementioned crawlies and flies) her wretched life began to unfold in front of me.  

Being careful NOT to discard any paperwork, I put it all in a separate bag as I went along.  To cut a long story short, this woman is in and out of A & E regularly with unexplained vomiting...  she had prescriptions laying around for various anti-depressants & stuff for panic attacks (I had to google them), acid reducing drugs, beta blockers etc. ALL at quite high doses - one I recall I took for a short while was the beta blocker Propanalol - I was only taking 10 mg 3 times a day which made me quite zombified... she has 80 mg 3 times day.  

Along with the medication, were numerous - in excess of 10 different appointment with various departments at the local hospital... letters from gps, consultants, referrals, scans, bloods and eventually I came across a summary from her most recent gastroscpy - basically saying there is nothing clinical to explain her problems and suggesting the mental health team need to see if they can help.

Basically, she is causing her own problems as you can see from the highly acidic nature of what she eats/drinks - and that is ignoring the vodka.

The amount of care and attention she is "needing" must be costing the poor NHS thousands... and that's just 1 person.   

If someone were to take a more holistic approach, most of the testing could be avoided.  She NEEDS help.  Which leaves me with a dilemma.

Whilst I know it's not my place, SHOULD I contact her gp practice and talk to her doctors to give them the background to how she is living? ... so perhaps they can help her? - if for no other reason than to save their budget a massive amount of money.  It's no wonder I can't get to see my GP  with the likes of her taking up so much of the resource... oh I know they won't tell me anything about her - I don't want to know... but if I can help them to help her, surely that would be a good thing?

On moving a box of "stuff" out of the kitchen, Once the flies had died down (I've sprayed 2 whole cans of Raid in there today - working out it was best to move a bit, spray, stand back then move a bit more) I spotted some old photos and various DVDS... the photos had dates of 2002 on them and there she was looking happy as Larry with friend and lovers...  on a trip to Belgium (I recognised a few landmarks)...   The DVDs and photos filled me in with a bit more info about her life - in short, lesbian interest DVDs and photos of her in loved up embraces with a woman.

This set me pondering - is that what's led her to where she is now? - self loathing or a failed relationship?...  all speculation of course but if that is the case... what a terrible result and life wasted and for what? - never coming to terms with who or what she is?   

I thank my lucky stars our lives didn't go down the same path.

Also  among the papers, were letters from her previous landlord before she moved in with us, charging her circa 1500 quid for "Dilapidation correction"... along with receipts which proved she'd paid so clearly this has not been the first time she's done this.    I'd recently given her a reference confirming she'd paid her rent on time and not been any bother etc...   having not had reason to venture into the property, I genuinely did feel all was OK at that time. 

 DO I now, get in touch with her new letting agent to warn them to keep a close eye on her to avoid this happening again? - I mean, the new landlords (and I note she's paid 6 months up front with them too like she did with us) might NOT be able to rectify the mess she leaves as easily as I have been able to today and end up incurring costs they can't afford to pay. 

 The sick stains btw, HAVE come up after a couple of passes with my old Vax carpet cleaner and whilst there's another day cleaning in there, nothing is permanently damaged.  I could have asked someone else to do it but to be honest, that wouldn't have been cricket - Gav at work would have come in to help but it was a totally unpleasant job and not one he's paid enough to do - come to think of it, neither am I but there we are - the worst of it is over... and I've gone from being angry with a tenant, to feeling sad about the misery endured by a fellow human being.

In other news - yesterday at work I gathered up a few off cuts of timber from the track we're making (photos of that to follow once we lay it down) and made a quick set of steps for the rear of the boat.

They're only a prototype but will do whilst we're working on the boat - I'll make a "proper set" with proper measurements when the fit out is nearly complete... meanwhile, these'll do for now - they're actually quite sturdy for a 15 min job too.

I still can't decide whether to contact this woman's gp or not - what would YOU do?

For now, I'll sleep on it.

Until next time...

Sunday 24 July 2016

The Good... The Bad... and the Fugly!

In 'yoof' speak, apparently when they refer to something as 'Bad' - that means they're pleased with it as in reality, it's 'good'...  I don't get it but as a nod to show we're not (quite) the fuddy duddy's we think we are...  we went to see "Ellis" for the first time yesterday  - and  she's Bad ... WITH a capital B of course :-)

To walk you though the porthole positions left to right;  No 1 is over the single dinette,  No 2 is over the kitchen sink, No 3 is in the lounge over a chair, Side window also lounge with door to bathroom directly right,  No 4 is bathroom and No 5 is the over the centre of the bed... which apparently we may regret in regards condensation drips!

Ideally, they'd have been spaced equidistantly but that would have placed porthole No. 2 inside a wardrobe...  I'm sure once we've got the name on the rear panel, they'll look OK.. if not, we'll do something arty between 1 and 2. or perhaps place some trailing plants on the roof to hang down the side.

Chris (the boss man) introduced us to Paul the joiner who has already started attaching battens ready to fit the lining to.  We walked through the boat with him and marked the positions of the planned bulkheads...  10 in all.  It's apparent from the lounge area, that it's going to be very snug in there - we'll see how it feels once it's lined out ... we can always lose 1-2 ft from the planned kitchen to increase the size of the lounge if it does feel too small.  

The position of the portholes and side hatches has worked out well though with much more light in there than we'd thought - especially once the hatches are opened.  

Btw - I caved in and agreed to have BOTH side hatches glazed.  Luckily we're only paying for one of them though as a dear friend is buying the other as a boat warming (literally I suppose) present.  500 quid is a lot of money for a 2ft square bit of glazed window but Andy was right....  it will make the sitting area much more pleasant... especially during the winter months...AND in the worst of the weather, we can close the metal shutters on the outside too to keep in the heat.

Yesterday's viewing was not all plain sailing if you'll pardon the pun - there's a couple of dents/deformed areas in the roof that stand out (to me anyway) like a sore thumb.    You can't really make them out from these (poor ) photos  - in fact, Andy didn't spot them but they are there none the less - about dining plate sized indentations in the roof just in the bathroom area.  Chris doesn't seem too worried about and said he'd already arranged for someone to sort it out.  

I suppose it could have been done by the hook on a crane or whatever in the workshop and maybe it wasn't noticeable until it was out in the daylight... it'll get sorted.

Another potential issue was also  identified in regards the roof...  slap bang where the flu for the Morso is planned to go out, is one of the tubular roof bars.  I know we could cut into it but doing so would mean weakening the structure ... SO (and I hope this IS possible) I've asked that when they are sorting out the dents, they remove said bar and weld it back in 5-6 inches further back - in fact, as close to the bathroom bulkhead as possible.  I'm not sure this will happen so I may end up bringing home the plasma cutter from work to cut into it when I fit the chinmey collar in a couple of months... fingers crossed on that one!

You can see from the photo of the rear, the higher than normal lockers we requested.... I had a quick sit on them and it has made a difference to the view over the boat...  such a simple modification but one that will make chugging along a more pleasurable experience.

Close up, the welds don't look too shabby either which I'm pleased about... I'm not a brilliant welder myself but I'd have hated it, if their welds looked worse than mine do lol.  

To maximise the size for the water tank, we've agreed to have the water pump in the bottom of the wardrobe to the right.  This will buy us a valuable few inches extra for the tank and increase capacity by somewhere between 150-200 litres - which in turn will reduce the number of visits to the water point.

All in all, we're pleased to finally have a boat... all beit one that's a few months off being on our mooring.  It's been a struggle, saving up for the last 6 and a half years... but the end is in sight - or rather the beginning is in sight I suppose!

It's hard to tell from the following photo whether Andy is pleased  or not - I'll let you make your own mind up!

Until next time...

Tuesday 19 July 2016

The hull has arrived...

It's been a busy week - after the funeral, I had to scoot up to Beamish to help the others erecting the mini vintage fair we were putting on for their 1950s weekend.

By the time I got there, they'd put up the Austin Cars and the Frogger stall so all that was left to do was erect the Whirl-a-ball (it's  bit lig pinball).  I'd already taken a photo of the road train leaving our premises:

If you've seen it on the road - or worse still, been stuck behind it (max speed of the 1972 Atkinson is 30 mph) you'll appreciate both it's length and awkwardness.  We tend to follow behind it in another car in case something goes wrong... such as one of the air hoses coming off - thus slamming on the brakes on the trailers.... they're VERY good... !

We don't do this thing (running fun-fairs) for a living - it's a hobby (apparently)... or more of a trade-stand I suppose.  This time, it was a 4 day event...   Our stalls do look "nice" I suppose but to be honest, it's not really my cup of tea - running them that is... I prefer to restore them any day.

This time, Andy and I were running the Whirl-a-ball  - complete with 1950s costumes... Andy looked ok in his, but I looked a cross between a gangster and Freddie Kruger!

*sings, 1, 2 Freddie's coming for you*... which Gav spent most of his time singing from the Austin car ride he was running

The Austin's is a lovely kids rid - 10 cars (2 with motors that weigh a ton) which are suitable for even the smallest child - so long as it can sit up, we'll run it slow enough for them to have a safe ride.  I don't  really like kids but when I stood in for Gav so he could have a break, I had to admit it was nice to see the pleasure in their faces and watch the parents proudly taking photos or videos.

We REALLY do need to have a size limit though!!!

We pulled it all down late on Sunday night and on Monday morning, set off back to Wakefield with it... which took nearly 4 hours...  

Thank heavens' that's it for another year.

- - - - - - - - - - 

In other - MORE important news, yesterday I got an email from the builder to say the hull has arrived and he'll be fitting windows, ballast and flooring shortly.... we've arranged to go over this coming Saturday to see it and I'll take some photos to update you then.

FINALLY it's happening...  

Also, over the course of last week, I managed to switch to a new 5 year fix mortgage deal... which should - all being well  see us through the rocky times ahead that BREXIT may cause.  It's not the lowest rate  but IS £75 a month lower than we've been paying for the last 2 years anyway... and of course I'll continue to pay the same amount to reduce balance interest is payable on.  Small change I know, but it all helps.

Until next time...

Tuesday 12 July 2016

Bernie - Dancing her way to heaven...

If you believe  in the place and have a faith that is.

I'm still un-decided... agnostic, bordering on atheist I suppose - that doesn't mean I'm godless... it's just I see 'my' god in different places.

Today I went to a funeral ... a very important funeral of someone very important.  It was the FIRST one I've ever been to that I've actually been very moved - to the point of tears and unable to speak for much of the time.  My brain was like an episode of "The Peep-Show", trying to remove myself from the event and look in - complete with a calming narrative... which didn't work btw.

I was trying to work out what it was making me SO upset.  Simple really I suppose...  it was the first funeral I've attended where I REALLY did care about the departed AND the people they've left behind.   I wasn't sad for me, I was sad for them... for the hurt, despair, feelings of loss and fear they have right now.... it was a collective sentiment I'm sure and one that did make me realise - we're all the same... no matter how special we think we are... how individual we like to think we are,  deep down (psychotic types a side) we're all human.

It made me stop and think about the world we live in... the way we deal with and approach others in our day to day lives... it made me think that for the most part we all rush around, stressed with all the day to day trite that is meaningless... we should  look for the good in people... take a moment to talk with a stranger...look out for our neighbours ... what I suppose I'm saying is we should behave in a Christian manner - which doesn't mean we must pray to a higher being but be the very best we can to everyone we encounter... even those we don't naturally lean towards...although I do draw the line when it comes to stroppy Estonians!

Looking around the church today, for the first time I suppose, I actually felt every emotion it's possible to feel... my heart was racing whilst I tried to stifle my desperate need to cry... it wasn't MY place to cry... or so society pressured me into thinking.  Ironically, it was JUST the place to cry... surrounded by like minded, caring souls - all there for the same reason I was.   To show love and support to people  they care about...

WHY are us British SO reserved?

This isn't the place really to go into details - it's personal to the grieving family but I just wanted to ensure the event - terrible that it is, was recorded somewhere I can reflect on in the future.

You are all very dear to me and I am both honoured and humbled to stand shoulder to shoulder with you x

Sunday 10 July 2016

A week working in Margate...

It's been a funny old week.

Not in an amusing way but in an unsettling  way.  It's not Margate's fault of course but "work" getting in the way of important stuff... which I'll explain shortly but first I'll update you on the reason for the trip away.

The more astute readers may have spotted a speedway ride in an earlier blog posting NEXT to the chairoplanes we restored and delivered to Dreamland a few weeks ago.  If you didn't, here it is.

If you look through it to the left, you can see the chains of the chairs...

I never did post a photo of the completed other one so here she is, resplendent in the Margate sunshine.

I know pride is supposed to be a sin - but we're all very proud of how she turned out... she nearly killed us and in actual fact she has claimed at least one fatality in her previous lives... before we changed the motor, it used to be at floor floor level running a belt on a cog which turned a shaft and transferred the drive to a gearing cog at the top... a poor operator (name unknown) got a bit close one day and was pulled up into the gearing and met his end.  The lads and I  joke around a lot in the workshop but without exception, this topic was never a source of amusement.  

What was I on about? - ah yes, the speedway.   Fairground rides have a annual safety ticket - much the same as a cars MOT(Vosa for the pedants).  The Speedway is still in test but we needed to take it apart to address a few things which were advisory last year and allow access to the tester who was booked for Tuesday/Wednesday.  This ride is a 1930's Orton and Spooner Ark - now "dressed" as a speedway.  Underneath, the mechanics of it are the same as a waltzer... ie. big ruddy heavy centre and platforms which try and kill you at every opportunity... we know this as on more than one occasion over the last week, Gav has gashed his head on them!

They sit on girders with a wheel on one end and cup on the other which is pulled around by the centre.

It's the girders that need most stringent crack testing - even ones invisible to the human eye need welding up and testing again...  hence why we had to take it apart - you can do repairs to the platfors in situ... it's uncomfortable of course but that's life these days.

Luckily, now I've got an account with A-Plant, they provided a tele-handler for us to use to lift the platforms and girders down to the ground to work on.

Once the platforms and girders were off, we were able to get a good look at the centre section, replacing any worn bolts and give it a good greasing... we were all covered from head to toe by close of play Tuesday... and although we cleaned ourselves up as well as we could with diesel, must admit to leaving a few marks on the hotel towels !

A few welds later, it was time to put the thing back together again...  I write this in a few words - it actually took 4, 14 hour working non-stop days...  with barely a word of appreciation.

Despite the exhaustion, this time, we all worked well together and for the most part were good humoured...  I took this photo of Gav (aka scrappy do) to help explain to him that, when stood next to a normal person (in this case Big Andy) he really IS small!

Anyway - it's back together and running really well again...  it DOES need a lick of paint and a few minor repairs but they can wait until it next comes back to the workshop... whenever  that is.

Usually when we work in Margate, we stay in the town but hotel availability for some reason was low so we ended up stopping in Ramsgate instead.

I'd never been to Ramsgate before - I must admit, it's actually quite nice... quite a surprise really.  The harbour being really quite lovely and a little bit Whitby-esque (don't know how to write that) -certainly during the day... 

I spotted these 2 wide beams tucked away in the corner near the old steam tug  - I presume as there is nowhere for them to actually "go" they're home for someone.

See - something boaty related at last in this post!!!

By night, (sorry no photos ) it has a Mediterranean feel about it - with lovely lighting and even a couple of Greek restaurants.  IF you fancy a few days away by the sea, it's certainly worth a visit.


At the beginning of this posting, I mentioned that it had been an unsettling week.   The reason for this was that at the start of it, I received 2 phone calls... the first was from my Mother with news that another of my uncles had taken ill and been rushed into hospital - the background to this is that the one who was rushed in that morning, was currently looking after another one who'd been sent home from hospital to die.  Which meant the other family members (most of which are in their 70s) were trying to rally round  and support both of them.   

This in itself was a bit disconcerting but given the ageing state (and good humour) of my family, something that we just get along with.

Shortly after  the call from my mum, ( whilst I was crawling under the ride undoing bolts) I took a call from my oldest (longevity not age) friend... her mother had just died  following a few weeks in hospital.  I can't deny this hit me like a bolt out of the blue - which it shouldn't have, because she  had been in decline for a short while and it was expected.   I laid there under the ride, fighting back the tears trying to be "normal" with Helen on the phone... trying to be supportive but feeling both sick and angry at the fact I wasn't able to walk away from the job in hand and go home to be near her. 

 Platitudes are no use to anyone I know, but just being able to "be around" for people you care about in their time of crisis is the "right" thing to do... AND the thing I wanted to do.  It was SO frustrating not being able to get in the car and go to be with her.  She fully understands the responsibility on my shoulders but the thing I'm getting at is that I WANTED to have the autonomy and freedom to.

Helen and I have been friends since I was 18 and went to work washing dishes in her fathers pub.  We share the same "work like your dad" work ethic and despite often not seeing each other for months on end, can pick up a conversation like it was yesterday.  Her family supported me through a difficult period in my 20's coming out, and I've owed them an immense debt for their kindness, tolerance and support ever since.  Not long ago on their golden wedding anniversary, rather than send a card,  wrote them a letter of appreciation - we joked that it was cheaper than sending a card but the sentiment (and contents) brought pleasure to both of them... which now looking back, was fortunate timing... to actually have been able to say (well write) to someone, how much you value and appreciate them... 

I'm SO glad I wrote that letter!

Call it another epiphany if you like but for all the sadness we're all feeling now, it has re-affirmed that our plan to live on the boat, ditch our current lives and explore the UK waterways, forging whatever "life" we can, IS the way ahead for us...

hopefully we'll see you there.

Until next time...

Friday 1 July 2016

Progress - just NOT on the boat :-(

It's getting busy again now at work.  You may remember a while back we began restoring 2 rides at the same time.   The Chair-o-planes and the racing track/cars.

We finished the chairs and they're now up and running down in dreamland.  The racing track - 1930s Brooklands Speedway to be precise, is well under way

Sorry for the photo stream but it's the easiest way to share what's been going on - I'm not quite worn out (again) yet but it won't be long.  For example, here is car number 7 before I began working on it

(it's the one on the right)

It was formerly green and yellow... BUT it's now Cream and Green - CLIFF green to be precise - the colour (with the same name as my dad) was the same as the Audi 80 GT I drove around in when I first passed my driving test many moons ago...  a lovely old car even then.

 The chrome has been a nightmare - to be honest, if we'd had time and more money, we'd have had it all re done...  alas the quotes I had were for between 410 - 500 quid per car... suffice to say, a lot of cleaning and polishing has taken place ...I'm quite pleased with how it's turned out actually - by NOT re-plating them, it does add to the historical aspect with the  patina don't you think?

I've had to ditch a few bits that were beyond recovery.

Seat wise, I've had a crash (no pun) course in re-upholstering using black leatherette.  The old ones were totally worn out.

They're a pain given the shaping but with a bit of stretching and hot glue sticks, I think they'll do.  

The seats all needed re-making:

followed by some new foam and more leatherette - this time using a staple gun ... MUCH easier.

I've put the cars to one sidde for now as we need to concentrate on the track  -  you would not believe how much wood we've got piled up.

The next couple of weeks are going to be busy - alas, NOT working on the track.... we've got some annual maintenance to do on a ride we've got hired out so I'm off to Margate 4am Monday morning for the week with Rog and Gav - you'll note NEITHER of those are Estonian OR an apprentice lol.

Sorry this is not boating related... it's just the way life is rolling at the moment - work has taken over again for a while:-(

Until next time...