About Me

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The name describes my demeanour and voice! I love narrowboating and that is why this blog is mainly about the boat and our interaction with it. I have been keeping a log for Sonflower ever since we bought her and moved onto her as our main residence. Some incidents in our boating life have been hilarious, some scary and some down right dangerous. I cannot tell what will come in the future but you can now share them! The crew are an 'ordinary' couple. The Best Mate and I.

Saturday, 11 September 2010

an ARK!

This afternoon we had a lovely afternoon boating. Well, Eeyore and Piglet didn't actually get onto a boat but the Best Mate spent the afternoon nattering on the cruiser stern of a friends boat as it descended Napton Locks. We offered to do what Granny Buttons calls 'lock wheeling' for them because they are on a tight schedule to return from the IWA National, where they have been part of the set up crew, to Milton Keynes for heart surgery. The heart problem means that they should not be doing more than 5 locks per day. But progress at that rate would be too slow. A little help sped them on their way.

Halfway up we met blogger nb Harnser who was almost home!

Strolling back up the flight we met an aggravated boater who had plainly signalled to a boat descending the locks to leave the lock bottom gates open. They had closed them and the boat behind filled the lock. Why are people so inconsiderate? We were able to make her smile by opening the gates of the next lock.

That's how we will change the world and their 'go faster' attitude; one Act of Random Kindness at a time.

Here is a photo of our friends waving goodbye as they pass Folly Bridge no 113

Wednesday, 8 September 2010


We had a lovely day out today to this idyllic Tudor mansion in Warwickshire.

Charlcote Park house is not open on Wednesday or Thursday but the out buildings, including a brew house and carriage collection, and the gardens are. The Parterre adjoins the River Avon and the views are wonderful. I noted however that the chub, clearly visible in the crystal clear water, are battling against a current of at least 1 m/sec (2.1/4 mph). It occurred to me that really, this stretch of the Upper Avon is NOT really suitable for a navigation as desired by some.
Can you imagine a 65 ft narrowboat in this picture?
No, I thought not!

The gardens are delightful including a short woodland walk during which we saw young blackbirds drinking at a pond, a nuthatch feeding on a pine tree, jays and listened to a woodpecker hammering somewhere above us. We really enjoyed the latte, brownie and shortbread in the daily open restaurant too.

Monday, 6 September 2010


Just a couple of pictures from The Summer Cruise

Here she is going under Ugly Bridge No 52 heading for the seventh lock on the 21 lock Hatton Flight.

This one attempts to capture SONFLOWER with sunflowers in the background. You can just about see a few specks of yellow! I will never make a photographer.

Saturday, 4 September 2010

On a Ring (continuing)

More texts from Stuart and Margs who are navigating the Leicester Ring:

Wednesday 1 September:Ahoy Cap'n just reporting in! Another good 2days thro beautiful canal/riverscapes wiv great weather. NOw just south of Leicester at Aylestone. . .praying for you daily. wil check in on Friday

Friday 3 September: We had a pump out today and am not sure how much blue to put in before we use it.
[My reply: About a litre from the blue bottle.]

Saturday 4 September Thank you. sori I missed cal. prob goin up Foxton flight. all else is good as well. lv from us X

Isn't it amazing the stuff we take for granted after a while. Although I hired boats on many occasions before buying SONFLOWER it wasn't until I owned her that I had to bother with things like pump outs, blue, gas, deisel and grease. I will have to add more to my briefings!