Wednesday, July 10, 2024

Much ado about nothing much

There's not a lot of news to share this week, unfortunately. Our lives have, as usual, been dominated by such mundane topics as the inclement weather, which hasn't been very helpful in our plans to prepare for faring. Despite it being warmer and sunnier, it has rained for at least some part of every day in the last two weeks, which makes painting impossible, however dry the rest of the time has been – more than a little frustrating. In fact, last night we thought we were going to get a humdinger of a weather event. The sky was as threatening as I've ever seen it and all the forecasters promised a severe thunderstorm. In the end, there was a flash and a bang, accompanied by a brief, not particularly heavy shower, and that was it. Definitely a big anti-climax – not that I'm sorry. I'm no fan of dramatic, extreme conditions.

What I don't understand is that we keep being told that each month this year has been the hottest on record. I mean, I just don't get it. I honestly think those doing the recording must be in some secret, protected weather bubble, because no one I know believes it. Most of northern Europe has had below average temperatures the whole of this year. Spring was cold, chronically wet and late in coming and the number of real summer days I can count since the beginning of June would barely fill one hand, let alone two. I've been wearing cardigans and a fleece almost every day.

Anyway, whatever the pundits say, I haven't been able to paint the back deck on the Hennie H until this week and even now, I'm having to do it in small sections. Maintenance is merciless and water is the worst weatherer you could imagine. If I could find some way of covering up both barges during the winter, I'd do it. Wouldn't if be great if I could wrap them both in cling film the way the airports wrap our luggage? I'd love that although I'm not sure how our harbour masters would feel about it. A plastic vacuum-packed barge that looks like a huge caterpillar cocoon wouldn't quite fit the image of a historic harbour, would it?

Moaning aside, we still hope to leave in a couple of weeks; there are just a few appointments to get out of the way first and then we can set off on a very slow and gentle meander south.

In the meantime, there's always plenty to do (apart from painting boats, that is), and I'm busy writing the story of Vereeniging's journey to her current mooring. There've also been lots of sporting events, village festivals and final work commitments going on in the background, so life is never dull.

And of course, there's always Zoe, whose little face full of expectations keeps me active. Koos took the first two photos of her below (for Rebecca), and I snapped the other when my daughter and I were out for a walk.


Zoe and her best pal, Lucy, looking at my daughter in the hopes
of a treat

These last pictures are a couple you may have already seen elsewhere on social media, but I know some of my friends here are not on Facebook or Twitter, so I hope you like them. 

View from the crumbly cottage as a bout of rain was approaching

Reflections on our nearby creek on one remarkably still day.
It's almost unheard of to have no wind in Zeeland

So that's it allemaal. As the title says, much ado about nothing much, but we're slowly getting there. Enjoy the rest of your week and I'll be back again soon.