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Monday, 18 March 2013

Back to being single handed

Since I broke my leg on 1st October, I have not had the legs or the confidence to cruise the boat on my own. Finally, on Sunday I decided that it was time to 'get back on the horse'. I wanted to go before the Easter rush so that I could take my time and find easy mooring sites. I wasn't sure how I would cope physically or emotionally after my confidence took a pretty big beating when I was injured. But I had to find out if I could still cruise single handed because if I couldn't cruise then I couldn't imagine remaining on the boat. I know it suits some people to have a floating cottage but for me, most of the joy of being a boater is in the travelling.

As it happened I didn't start entirely alone as my mate Stan helped me up the lock flight. But I managed to climb on my roof and up the lock ladder - something that was beyond me just a few weeks ago. Then at the top of the Fradley Flight I waved a fond farewell and cruised off with just Bonny for crew. I couldn't stop grinning! The weather was grey and chilly with just the odd bit of sunlight, but I didn't care - I forgot the sheer joy of pointing your boat ahead and just going. Last night I stopped near Handsacre on mooring pins. I really need to work on my arm muscles now as I found hammering in the pins hard going. My leg hurt a bit, but I am used to that and it didn't stop me taking Bon for a long walk as a reward for her patience on the roof.
(The observant among you will have spotted this wasn't taken yesterday - trees in leaf - but you get the idea!)
Today we cruised through Handsacre, Armitage and Rugeley in such thick fog that I couldn't even see the smoke stacks of Rugeley Power Station despite passing within a quarter of a mile of them! We tied up at lunchtime at one of my favourite moorings at Taft Bridge looking across to Cannock Chase. It's a safe place for Bonny to be off the lead so she has been very happily hunting mice in the reeds. Oh and the sun came out just as we moored - lovely.
This is where we are moored - just space for one boat but again this photo was taken on another occasion - it certainly isn't warm enough to have a lounger out!

Tomorrow we will mooch up to Great Haywood and stay for a couple of days before returning home. The temptation is just to keep going but my leg will only take so much before it hurts enough to spoil the day. I am so grateful though to be able to do even a few days. I really did wonder, whilst lying in a hospital bed, whether I would ever be able to manage the boat again.


Lynda Alsford said...

I'm so pleased for you that you have managed some single handed cruising! Great news! Enjoy it!

Nev Wells said...

Well done for getting back on the steel horse so well. We have come to Percy for a couple of days but are staying put, hopefully moving up past Woodend over Easter weather dependant.

I agree fully about getting out, it's nice to use the boat as a home by the water but if you can change the views, even locally so much the better.

Take are

Nev & Rachel

Kevin said...

Well done gal :)

Lisa said...

Oh brilliant news. I am so pleased to hear that, just imagine a few weeks more and that sun lounger will be out on the tow path, well maybe.
Keep up the grand work.

Maggie Malone said...

At least you've already made progress of trying to conquer your fears. It is certainly not easy, but I hope you will be able to do what you love before, even if the manner you are doing it would change to adapt to what happened. As long as you keep your progress, slowly but surely, change will happen. There is certainly a lot of things that one has to adapt to in the aftermath, and I hope you had a relatively easier time dealing with all the necessary legal proceedings. And I hope that any claims of personal injury you have made will be met.

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