A wet Sunday lunchtime perhaps doesn’t show the lock at it’s best…

I like the bustle. I like the (costly) visits to  the chandlers. I like my notebook full of lists and hastily scribbled plans. I really like the whole rigmarole of the build-up to the new Boating Season.

For us the 2013 Season really begins, as for so many others, with the Easter break.

This Easter weekend Claire and I are off to the boat alone – again! It was my 50th birthday last week and in combination my in-laws and sister have agreed to take the kids for a few days.

To make the most of those days there are a few practical jobs I need to do this coming weekend; there’s the water tank to clean out, and the pipework to check; there’s three bulkhead lights to fit; and there’s the moving of a little ballast from the bilges in the Long Cabin and transferring it under the back deck, to trim the boat once we re-fill the water tank.

I’m again driving up to Banbury after work on Friday evening to enable me to make a very early start of Saturday and get the jobs done.

Uxbridge Lock from the bridge…

Part of the pre-planning for Saturday was a trip across to wonderful Uxbridge Boat Centre on a very wet Sunday lunchtime. I needed to pick up a few bits-&-bobs. It was also an excuse to have a short canalside walk. The walk was, unfortunately, curtailed by tantrumming twins, so only involved a stroll as far as Uxbridge Lock.

Uxbridge Boat Centre – an Aladdin’s cave of boat-related goodies!

Despite the moody children, and the equally moody weather, I still found myself feeling desperate to be ‘at the elum’ again, engine turning, heading off… new Season – bring it on!

Crane & Rain… the boat yard at Uxbridge Boat Centre

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