Petering Out At Watford, 12th December

‘Avecoat Marina

Mick headed off before breakfast to Bethnal Green to see if he could get his parcel, it wasn’t there. Because he’d requested it to be forwarded to a different post office he then made his way over to Homerton. It wasn’t there either. It must have been on it’s way, a suggestion that it might arrive by midday was made, he came back to the house for some breakfast and to discus what to do.

One of us needed to head back to the boat today no matter what. Rail strikes tomorrow. There are only two compartments in the magic food bowl, so Tilly would be getting hungry. The other reason was that neither of us had turned off the stop cock from the water tank. The boat was being kept warm by the electric central heating (we hoped), so no worry about frozen pipes. However as a matter of routine in cold weather, we’d put the shower head into the shower tray and left all the taps open, with the water pump off. This is good practice should anything freeze. However, the shower head was now lower than the level of water in the tank, therefore a syphon effect would be happening, gradually emptying the water tank with the aid of gravity! If both of us loitered for another couple of hours would it make much difference? We decided to risk it.

A tracking notice came through, Mick’s parcel had arrived. Time to say farewell to the Leckenbys and a big thank you for hosting the get together yesterday. Andrew gave us a lift to the post office and then on to a bus stop.

New departure boards at Euston

At Euston several trains were cancelled, ours thankfully was just late, but everyone seemed to be waiting for it! We got a seat and enjoyed the ride back northwards through the snowy landscape, every canal we saw frozen. It seemed like the north south divide at Watford was being adhered to by the weather, as soon as we’d passed the junction the snow covering petered out. By Milton Keynes only small patches of frost were visible.


Tamworth station was easy today as we arrived at the platform by the entrance. Another Acorn Taxi back to the marina. Here the haw frost we’d seen when we left had shrunk. There were reports of some snow, but it hadn’t hung around for us. Tilly greeted us shouting at the front door.

About bloomin time! I was starting to look for the next flipping lid to open! And I was getting wet toes when going for a drink!

First job, check the shower. About an inch of water sat in the tray, it maybe could have lasted another day before it spilled over onto the bathroom floor. All taps were turned off, shower head put back up where it belongs and the water pump turned back on.

To the top of the tray, but not as high as the enclosure

Next the central heating was given a boost, the stove fire was laid and lit. Soon Oleanna was warming back up.

The water pump was making a bit of a funny noise, had been for a couple of days. Mick opened up the front step to see water. Maybe the pump had got cold and when warmed up it decided to leak, or maybe it had been leaking for a while. The nappy it sat on was soaked and couldn’t hold anymore.

I had to wash my feet to get a drink!

Mick pulled out the other water pumps we have, ones bought cheaply last year, known to possibly have a fault. The one with the tick on the side was plumbed in. Noisy but it pumped water, a good outcome. Even so a new water pump will be required, a job for tomorrow.

0 locks, 0 miles, 3 visits to post offices, 0 presents arrived for the Leckenbys, 1 big bag to take home, 1 bus, 1 train, 1 taxi, 1 not as frosty Tamworth, 1 shouty cat, 1inch away from the top, 1 stove, 1 pan of emergency tuna pasta, 1 shopping order checked over.