No Direction

No Direction is our 70ft Narrowboat which is now home to my wife Jayne and myself, it was launched on 4th February 2008.

We spend the Winters in a Marina and cruise in the warmer weather.

Wednesday, 22 December 2010

Merry Christmas Everyone.

We hope you all have an enjoyable Christmas and New Year and that the snow is not causing you too many problems.

We had to visit Braunston today, (not by boat but in a van) the snow there was pretty bad around 1.30 this afternoon but it stopped long enough to take a picture.

We were here in June getting sun burnt.

Monday, 20 December 2010

Life Goes On.

It looks like another long hard winter for everyone, not just boaters, we have been helping a friend out with a bit of van driving and seem to have spent most of the last week going very very slowly on the M25 Motorway due to the weather.

Not much business being done on the service Quay at Kings Bromley Marina.

Always hungry this weather.

Friday saw us over at my Mothers Bungalow situated between Shrewsbury and Oswestry, we had offered to give the place an early spring clean for her and had booked an oven cleaning company to come in and de-gunge the oven, money well spent.

On Saturday afternoon Jayne and I went around the Marina selling raffle tickets for the Marina Christmas raffle, only £1 a strip and some people still said no !! 

Monday morning we had minus 11 on the car thermometer, the pool of clear water in the middle of the Marina which the ducks and geese use is getting smaller by the day so I hope the cold eases off soon. 

Tuesday, 14 December 2010

Keeping the Tanks Full.

One of the most important jobs that Narrowboat owners need to do in the winter is keep the fuel tanks full, the reason is condensation forming on the steel walls of the tank above the Diesel
which then runs down and into the fuel, if the tank is full there is no exposed steel.
If water is allowed to stay in the fuel then it can develop into something called "Diesel Bug",
adding a fuel additive such as Marine 16 which is designed to keep things under control is a wise precaution.

A Diesel Bug coming to a tank near you ?.

From January fuel that is supplied to Narrowboats on Inland waterways is going to change, following a EEC Directive we will now be supplied with low sulphur Diesel probably road Diesel (EN590) with a red dye, road Diesel can contain up to 7% bio fuel which encourages water so we will have to keep a close eye on our fuel systems.

We see a lot of hot air balloons coming over Kings Bromley Marina when the weather is calm, they take off from Shugborough Hall and Trentham Gardens navigating their way around Rugeley Power Station and all the Pylons around here.

Their not really that close.

I'll stick to boats, if I fall off a boat I can swim if I fall out of that basket, thud.

Things thawed a bit at the weekend and we were able to fill the water tank, it's going to get cold again though.

Friday, 10 December 2010

The Meteor fireball.

On Wednesday evening I saw it, the Meteor fireball whizzing past planet earth, I was sitting on the settee and through a window saw something darting across the black sky, a really bright round ball shape with a tail behind it, I jumped up and got to the window all in one movement but a second later it had gone.
The thing I find most amazing was that it looked huge but astronomers say that it was only a bit bigger than a fist and at an altitude of 60 to 70 miles, impressive.

Tuesday, 7 December 2010

Christmas Lights

Christmas must be close as most of the Liveaboard boats in the Marina for the winter have got their Christmas lights up, so we put ours up on Sunday, of course before starting I carried out a full Health and Safety risk assessment !!

Lights up.

The Marina, like all the Canals is very frozen, the ducks and geese manage to keep an area ice free so that they can swim and drink, they are looked after in the Marina, most people on the boats throw them something to eat.

Ducks, Geese and Swans, all hungry.

Like everyone we have been enjoying the sights that this very cold weather brings, especially the frost on the trees, hedges and a few other places.
Frost on our Aerial and Christmas lights.

The Statue of James Boswell in Lichfield has a runny nose.

An unknown driver on (or off) Daisy lane between Fradley Junction and Alrewas.

On Tuesday, Midlands Today, our local Television news programme on BBC 1 had an interview with boaters Micheal Lee and his wife Val who are moored in Barton Marina, with all the water taps frozen they are having to carry water from the office block, no moaning or complaining, just get on with it, proper boating attitude.

Saturday, 4 December 2010

Winter in the Marina.

The problems encountered by boaters like us who spend the Winter months in a Marina pale into insignificance when compared with Continual Cruisers, these are the boaters who choose to stay out on the Canal all year, where we may have to join 2 or 3 hoses together to reach an un-frozen water tap to refill our water tanks the boater out on the Canal must watch the weather forecast closely and plan ahead to avoid being frozen in miles from anywhere.

3 hoses joined together to reach the un-frozen tap.

Last Winter Kings Bromley Marina was frozen for 5 weeks so no boat movements, we were ok as we have a water tap close to the ground which doesn't freeze, we have a car so can get to the shops, the Marina sells gas, coal and Diesel, we have a mains electrical connection so that we don't have to run the engine to charge the batteries and we have Cassette toilets so we can empty them without moving the boat. 
For the Continual Cruisers it's much more difficult, they can only carry so much water, coal, gas and food on a boat and therefore need to make sure that when the ice comes they are at least within walking distance of these necessities.

A Grim scene at Kings Bromley on Friday morning, ice and fog.