The car hasn't had a wash since 2012 so we dropped it off to the husbands of the girls that sell the Big Issue in Stone and Stafford towns while we had a look around Stone Farmers Market, we had lunch in the Royal Exchange with Dot, Gordon, Phil and Lynne. My eastern european cousins did an excellent job on the car, shiny inside and out when we picked it up.
Sunday - Sue walked to Aston Lock to set the gates for Ewn ha Cul's (Pasty Boat) arrival, soon after they were snugly connected to the grid in the marina.
Monday - Sue thought FL needed to look festive, we bought some festive installations in the way of battery operated lights and a diminutive tree from Poundland the lights are sellotaped to FL's interior in various places, I'm hoping the tape doesn't pull the veneer/varnish off when we take them down.
Thursday we drove to Birmingham and had a wander around the German Christmas Market. Nothing different there, stalls and produce were exactly the same as when we visited last year, even the customers looked familiar, lunch was excellent spit roasted ham rolls, a repeat of last year too. The market is well worth a visit and I bet we will be back again next year.
Temperature has taken a tumble this week with some sub zero's overnight, but it is snug and warm in FL, the Epping stove has been on 24/7 for the last few weeks. The stove being at one end of FL gives a range of temperatures throughout the boat, nice and warm in the saloon graduating to cool in the bedroom, which is the way we like it, the diesel fired central heating is redundant with the stove lit. Occasionally we need to open the doors to let the heat out. The floor of the boat always stays cool as it's below water level without the spray foam insulation the cabin roof and sides have, that is why most boats have footstools.
|A thin covering of morning ice in the marina.|
Friday we had an enjoyable afternoon over an ale or two in the Royal Exchange with Dot, Gordon, Richard and Sharon.
Saturday it was a trip to the Midland Chandlers for Gordon and me, I had intended to get the blacking for FL but then thought I'd leave it till nearer the time FL comes out the water, maybe MC will have a January sale. I did come away with a length of fuel hose and clips while Gordon purchased a whole bank of batteries. In the evening we got a surprise call... Diane, Ray, Paul and Elaine were in the bar at the Stone hotel, a great evening ensued catching up with the 'gang' a day earlier than expected, we will meet up again on Sunday for an arranged Christmas dinner at the Old Post Office, £8.49 per head including a drink of choice, very reasonable, there will be 18 of us at the table... we are all looking forward to that.