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.

14 comments:

  1. Hey, Val:

    You're lucky to have the weather you do. I'd trade you in a moment. It's REALLY hot here, and in the Palm Springs area, it has hovered around 117-123F. Just brutal across this country. Way warmer than it used to be.

    LOVED your photos so much. Beautiful scenery and beautiful Zoe!

    xx

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    1. Yes, I can understand that, Lisette, but I’m afraid we don’t feel lucky. We need the Vitamin D from summer sunshine to prepare for winter but we’ve had so little of it. It’s as if last winter went on until a couple of weeks ago. Of course your summer temperatures are awful, I agree.

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  2. I can recall similar poor summers and prolonged rain, but this year it seems to have been forever. We keep hearing about "global warming" but I don't see much of the warming. I know it's a technical term a bit of warmer "summer weather" wouldn't go amiss.
    On the plus side, Zoe looks happy and you gave us some lovely photos. That pic of the creek is lovely. Take care, I'm looking forward to hearing about your adventures afloat. David

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    1. Thank you, David. I completely agree about wanting just a bit more summer, especially before the winter kicks in. I’ll definitely be keeping you posted here on our travels.

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  3. Val, the warmest on record? Whoever they are - they don't live on our planet! This morning is the first time sunshine has been strong enough to come through the front window in...months. A year? It's the first time this "summer" that I'm not starting out wearing a woolly hat and a pullover. Hope you get on your way soon. God bless. And what a sweet, adorable face your Zoe has! Bless her. (Steph)

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    1. Steph, I’m with you 100%. I realise that the States are getting fiendishly hot weather, but these ‘records’ were supposed to be for Europe. No way. I’ve only been in a T-shirt without a fleece once this year. Zoe is, as you say, adorable, and I adore her 😄

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  4. In the US, they actually shrink wrap boats in the winter. But, you either have to haul out or find a liveaboard marina that allows the sights of this. Today is the first partly sunny day in a long time, it seems like.

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    1. Liesbet, I really want to see that! I was just joking, but it is an excellent idea. Yes, we’ve had dismal weather this year and it’s raining again tomorrow. Thank you for dropping in! Xx

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  5. Shame about the weather, Val! It is frustrating when you're raring to go at some maintenance jobs and it keeps raining. We're the same here: no walks and no prep work for the new giant shed in the back garden. I feel like I'm in limbo... 😶‍🌫️
    When are off on your travels? 😀

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    1. Limbo is the right word, Aidan. We're aiming for the week of the 22nd now, but we'll have to see. It's no fun to fare in rotten weather either, and we have open steering with no shelter. I hope you get to start your shed. Why will it be giant?

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  6. To fit all our boxes and for the brother to store and maintain his motor bike and some carpentry. Once finished a little shed for me to write, sort out photography for sale, make music and hide from the world when necessary. 😆

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    1. Sounds like quite a project! Good luck! A hideaway also sounds good.

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  7. As ever, you have my sympathy re the weather. It's just dismal and must make all your outdoor work on Vereeniging & Hennie Ha so difficult as no two days are the same! I do hope you manage to go faring and that you have some well deserved sunshine. We enjoyed our week away and it only rained on one day! Thanks for the pics of gorgeous Zoe. Your other pics are lovely too of course.

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    1. Thank you very kindly, Rebecca. Yesterday was lovely and today it's been pouring with rain, so you're right. No two days are the same. I flit from one job to the next, but I'm so pleased you had a lovely holiday. It was so well deserved and much needed. xx

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