Legends from our own lunchtimes

Wednesday, October 06, 2010


Exactly a year ago, (from Friday next) I sent an email to the folk at NavigFrance asking if the boat they had advertised was still for sale. He wasn't perfect by a long shot, (boats are boys in the French language) but he was cheap and they'd given it a bit of a scrub before we arrived, and agreed to do more work over winter. We were delighted, and named him Joyeux (Happy) in honour of our mood and the times that we would have on board.

Since then the team in Lagarde have looked after us as if we were family, which is nice because we think we are, and we've given him more of a scrub, and fixed a few things and made lists of things that still need fixing, very long lists.  But he shines in the sunlight now, and most of the water runs outside when it rains.

We've also travelled a few kilometres together this year, 670 of them to our amazement when we added them up, traversed 204 locks, and for all his ragged edges, and he's lived up to his name.

Today was a perfect day. We knew that it must end, but there was no harm to be had in stalling that time by travelling back to base even more slowly than usual, with the roof back and our feet up, until we simply ran out of river and locks and excuses to stay out longer.

As we were waiting to enter the lock that would bring us into the harbour this morning, for the last time this season, we wandered over to lend a hand to a Swiss family heading in the opposite direction. Their expressions could only be described as beaming and as he took his rope back, the patriarch of the troop looked at the sky and pointed to the boat, and said something in German which I didn't quite understand, so he repeated it for me in English.

"It's like a child's dream" he said.

We could find no argument.



1 comment

Anonymous said...

nearly cried :) Mand

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