Glorious Start To A Long Day. 22nd April


Our alarm had been set this morning, ever so early, it was still dark when it went off. No time for a cuppa in bed, no time for a cuppa or breakfast. We climbed into our clothes said goodbye to a puzzled Tilly and climbed into the car. Where were we going at such an early hour? The seafront.

With sunrise at 5:43 am we wanted to be there in good time aiming for 5:30 We parked on West Pier, parking free at that time and walked to our destination which was in front of the Grand Hotel on the beach.

Here there was activity, Dawn and Lee from Animated Objects were busy drawing in the sand, waves and boats. Standing close by their ‘Lighting up the Coast’ sculpture, all part of The Odyssey.

They have been touring the sculpture, an upturned boat, along the Yorkshire coast for a week at dawn and dusk as a taster of what is to come, today was their last day. The next chapter is coming in May.

Ben and Mick before sunrise

A small group had gathered and it was a lovely chance to say hello to some old friends as the light changed around us. Scarborough Lighthouse with the aid of the rising sun upstaged everything. Sometimes it is so worthwhile getting up really early and this was most definitely one of those times.


Back to the house for breakfast, then back over the Wolds to Goole.

Smelly top coat, very shiny

Gary and Glynn were busy with the very smelly top coat of the 2-pack blacking. Pear drops! Blimey!! We opened up the boat, but kept all the windows closed.

My aim today was to get the primer on the gunnels sanded back and maybe even get a coat of paint on them. The top coat of blacking is shinier than the previous coats and once cured very hard, Glynn said it would take about four hours to go off. Not wanting to end up with dusty blacking I decided to hold off with the sanding.

The bedroom oak floor got it’s first coat of oil. The wood was so thirsty I knew I’d be wanting to give it a second coat. Lunch was had before I got on with cleaning the main cabin floor. With the back steps removed I washed the floor using sugar soap to help remove any greasy bits. It’s surprising how much it has changed colour in four years, where Tilly’s food mat and scratch post normally live there are patches of the original paler colour.

A bit of sanding was needed to remove a few marks, maybe next time I do this I’ll use a sander and give the whole floor a sand back. The engineered flooring we have has something like 9mm of oak, so there is plenty to play with.

Ready for sanding

By now a good few hours had passed for the 2-pack top coat to have fully gone off so it was time to start sanding the primer. This proved a bit harder than I thought, some grittier paper was needed which sadly didn’t fit the sander. But I’d found that I was either being too heavy handed with the sander and taking too much off or the paper was tearing. So I ended up resorting to hand sanding. This all took sometime, far more than I’d thought it would. End result, well I think if we had more time I’d have applied another coat of primer to get the level higher where I’d taken it back to the steel. So the gunnels won’t look brand new, they wouldn’t after a couple of weeks cruising anyway!

Meanwhile Mick spent some time in the engine bay. He drained down the cooling system to check for any crud, luckily the coolant was clean. There was a request for the endoscope so that Mick could see right down inside to where the crud had collected on the Thames. All clear! Brilliant.

Just a shame a bucket of coolant got knocked over in the engine bay. Our wet/dry hoover was stuck inside, but Glynn leant us the boatyards so all could be cleared up. The system was filled back up using up any spare coolant we had. Tomorrow Mick will run the engine to check for air locks.

Undercoat applied

The tunnel bands got some undercoat. No need to cut in on the cream band as the black will be having a couple of coats, but the red band I did as best I could with a brush a touch too big for the job.

Then the first coat of oil on the main cabin floor. My dungarees were so dusty I changed into my jeans and knelt on a blanket whilst I applied the oil. I worked from stern to bow, taking a little breather in the bathroom then gave the bedroom it’s second coat. Luckily everything we wanted to take home had already been moved outside.

Activity by the big boats, trying to raise a sunken boat

The last bit of floor was the hardest as I reduced it to a one foot sized bit, then had to lean over from the front steps, supporting myself on the bed to get that piece. It was quite hard to stand up again. The front door could be locked and all left to go off overnight with no feet or paws to spoil it.

0 locks, 0 miles, 5am alarm, 1 stunning sunrise, 1 confused cat, 120 better than 240, 1st coat of oil, 2 hours sanding, 0.5 bucket of coolant, 1 pink damp engine bay, 1 hoover blowing, 4 trips back and forth, 2 undercoats, 1 fire still going, 1 crane, 1 boat raised from the depths, 1 long day.

2 thoughts on “Glorious Start To A Long Day. 22nd April

  1. Anonymous

    Your arms must be hanging off Pip after all that with an early start!
    Great photos of the sunrise.
    Boats looking mighty fine.

Comments are closed.