Bonny and I returned to our mooring last Saturday after a fantastic 15 days in Devon. I was rather worried that we had been so spoilt by being in a house that it would make us a little dissatisfied with the boat.
When I first arrived back, the canal was heaving with boats and it took me over an hour to ferry all the contents of my car to Don’t Panic, crossing the lock, I think, 6 times. I was very tired after that and the long drive and so I looked on my ‘bijoux and compact space’ with a rather jaundiced eye. However, the next morning I got up to the birds singing and the sound of a Lister working boat engine chugging by and suddenly all was right with the world.
Bonny doesn’t seem to be missing Devon either as she is happy rooting around in the hedges of our mooring. Mind you, dogs seem to be able to live entirely in the present moment, so missing something doesn’t seem to enter into their experience. She has been well behaved so far and so we have risked some off lead walks. We had a lovely one this morning as we arose to the first frost of the autumn. The sun was just rising and mist was hanging over the canal. I wish I had taken my camera, it was so beautiful. Bonny of course was less interested in the aesthetics than in trying to chase any number of squirrels up trees!
So, I have had my big cruise and my trip to Devon, so now it is about time to decide what to do with the rest of my life – or at least how to finance it. Having done my sums, I think I could eke out my savings until I receive my first pension by working either a winter job or a summer one. Then I would still be able to go on long cruises. The question is do I go and work in a shop when they take on extra staff over the 4 month Christmas period or do I take a summer job from say April to September where there will be more choice of the type of work and cruise in the winter?
There are advantages to winter cruising although obviously the weather can be limiting. Also it means that I don’t have to get up in the dark and come back in the dark and still have a dog to walk, water to fetch, a fire to light etc etc. In the summer, things are generally easier and I would have time to do my chores as well as work. Then again, cruising in the summer can be lovely with sunshine and warmth (except when we don’t get a summer like this year!) Then there is Bon to consider. She is used to being left on the boat, but not all day. I would think I have more chance of finding some sort of outside job in the summer months where perhaps she could come too.
Well, I have various dates in my diary for enjoyable things to do in October so I’ll take some more time to think about it!