Monday, 12 July 2010

The great British (boaters') barbecue

Shades of Abingdon, 2008... Bones and Maffi will remember.... Of course, the first time in three weeks that it's rained and we have a barbecue. I have drunk two bottles of Old Empire (5.7%) so forgive me if this is even less coherent than usual (and is that dripping noise the stern gland, or is it something to do with the kettle cooling down... and if I don't check now, will I have sunk by the morning?)...

Now, the barbecue came about because in Sainsbury's yesterday I spotted some reduced price, top notch, kippers. Now kippers I can take or leave, but Jim is particularly partial. So we bought them, thinking to fry them in the big frying pan I had brought from home as a (unsuccessful) experiment, but lunchtime frying on the Primus proved rather a messy and stressful business so we decided to try and do it outside, but the Primus simply would not light outside as there was a very slight wind. So we thought, well, the instructions say grill them, so perhaps if we got a disposable barbecue we could do that. Whish is what we did and how we can to be having a barbecue, complete with beer, in a heavy drizzle this evening.

Today... Jim took up the floors in the engine room and found two inches of water, which had ingressed at vaious points including the hatches, and a bolt in the handrail (now, not entirely surprisingly, discovered to be substantially rotten). He also fixed down the electrical conduit so all looks nice and neat, and, hopefully, tightened up the fitting so that the second water tank doesn't leak.

This morning was spent exploring Rugeley, which - of course - was much better than our first impression. The charity shops weren't outstanding, but I did get a new pair of 501s for £3.50, a nice little hammer for my useful things drawer (ex crumb/knife drawer, though there are a couple of knives in there) and some more net curtain wire (well, you never know when it will come in handy). A good hardware shop too, but sadly the fastenings shop we noted on our previous fleeting visit seems to have bettten the dust.

Had to light the stove to fend off the rain, then spent the afternoon doing marking while Jim slaved away in the engine room.

Oh god, I'm pretty sure it's the sterngland. But there's no point looking til the morning is there...

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