June 18th, 2003

cruising log

Wednesday 11th Richardmesnil to Toul

Set off for Toul with the Meteo promising more storms, the strikes extending in Marseilles, Rouen and Bordeaux and riots in Paris. Through the last 2 locks on the canal de Voges, through the huge lock capable of taking the 2000 ton barges that work the steel works and scrap yards of Neuve Maisons, and out onto the Moselle proper; the water is so clear and has an almost chalky quality to it. The photos I took in Epinal clearly show the weed and fish in the water of this lovely river.

I look as though I’ve just done 10 rounds with Mike Tyson, with a badly swollen right eye and left ear courtesy of the 2 mosquitoes who visited me throughout Monday night. The lock-keeper has given me some very sympathetic glances and a very warm ‘bonjour’ and ‘au revoir’, so I am sure that he thinks that my ‘injuries’ were inflicted by MWNN in some heated argument. The swelling would be much worse if I hadn’t replenished the anti-histamine pills that I’d depleted 10 days ago after the first ‘aerial attack’ to the jugular (that one left me inflamed from just under the left ear right down to the collar bone.)We really must find a permanent solution to putting mosquito screens on the windows and doors!)
knitting sketch

It's an ill wind

Thanks for the welcome home willowfae, it's good to be back, if only for a few days.

For those regular readers of the entries from the narrowboat in France, I'll continue to post the boat log entries in the mornings until I return to said boat. Willowfae had been posting them for me, one week later, as I was posting most of them 'snail mail' from the depths of rural Burgundy, Voges and Lorraine. It worked well most of the time and I can't thank her enough for her commitment to keeping it all up to date.

Returned to find your lovely cards waiting for me meallanmouse ta ever so. I had been anticipating receiving them via MWNN but, here I am, collecting in person. It was the threat of the French strikes preventing MWNN's return home to give the Founder's Day address at Q.E. school on Saturday that has forced our return 'en mass' (that and the really draining hot weather that had both me and the dogs in a pretty poor state each day by early afternoon.)

Winge of the day; - checked the video recorder for the last 5 eps. of BtVS

first ep - no sound - thanks a bunch Sky 1
second and third eps - all ok
penultimate and final eps - not there! - bloody resident outlaw had remembered to set the cable box to Sky 1 on his departure but, while he was there, on the day of the transmission, had tuned to BBC4 - video duly recorded live coverage of the British and American troops in Iraq and a program about 'famous quotes' - aaargh it's a case of deja vu; I lost the final eps of Series 6 in the same way.

Consolation prize; wonderful willowfae had recorded the final ep. for me (just in case something terrible happened to my VCR (namely Uncle D.) and catsyj has sent me CDs of all 5 eps (albeit they can be watched only in postage stamp size on my CD as it is in realplayer format which is not compatible with my TurboDVD player.

whinge over; it's good to be back - full-sized bed; full-sized bath; constant supply of water; washing machine; dishwasher; fridge/freezer; north-facing parlour etc etc. (getting back to basics is fine, in moderation, it makes you appreciate the things we take for granted in the 'developed world'!

Off to take a bath, with one of the mini-bombs from Epinal.
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