Friday 1 July 2016

A momentous day and single handing to Chester

Hi reader,

Yesterday for me marked a major event in my life as I finally joined the biggest leisure group in the world and retired from work.  It was quite an emotional day to say the least walking out the office for the last time and saying goodbye to colleagues I've worked with for years .  I can now look forward to doing what I love the most, boating!

Having the afternoon free and a table booked in town I brought AmyJo into Chester singlehanded.  I will be single handing more often now so wanted to have a try out.  I was quite pleased with myself as I had 4 locks to on my own, having never single handed a lock before now.  

I admit I was a tad nervous at the first lock but got into a routine that worked.  Admittedly I was going down the locks but I was relieved to find it relatively straightforward, if taking a bit longer.  I found not rushing and concentrating on what was going on really helped.  The only bit that needed undivided attention was descending the lock ladder to get back on board.  Must admit I don't like that much.  Sorry for the lack of photos but working the lock on one's own does not leave much time for the camera.

On arrival in Chester I found all the moorings were reserved for trading boats along Cow lane bridge towards Hoole Lane Lock, and the basin also full.  I winded at cow lane and retraced my steps.  Barry on the home brew boat was good enough to offer I breast alongside AreandAre.  Most grateful for that Barry.  This is quite fortunate as I have my retirement do in one of the restaurants  close by so I don't have to worry about drink driving.

After last nights rain this morning dawned with clear skies and little wind though it is slowly clouding up as the day wears on.  I took the opportunity to snap some photos first thing whilst the sun was out and was reminded today (1st July) is remembrance day for the battle of the Somme in 1916.  

Some young soldiers kitted out in world war one uniforms paraded down the towpath on their way into town.  A poignant reminder considering recent events that whatever way you voted, right or wrong, we must never forget those who paid the ultimate price in both wars to give us all the freedom we have today to decide for ourselves.

A brief stop before parading into town 
So today is day one of retirement.  Looking forward to doing all those little things I put off doing at weekends and pottering around the boat.  Most of all both Chris and I are looking forward to more cruising in the coming years though with Chris still working it will be during school holidays for now.  So, if you do spot AmyJo please give us a wave, we'd love to see you on our travels.

Home brew boat AreandAre and AmyJo
Some of the other floating traders prepare their wares for a days trading

This cat found a handy display shelf and pillow ot enjoy the sun

Boat cats and sunshine go together.


nb Bonjour said...

Congratulations and here's to a long and happy retirement!
Debby and Dave

Caroline and Martin said...

Happy retirement, as my husband has found out since April it's a wonder he ever had the time to go to work, and I've not needed to resort to any kind of list yet.

Tom and Jan said...

Another"kept man"! Enjoy it :-)

Jenny said...

Congratulations on your retirement. So much more time for boating, or in our case back here in New Zealand, more time for getting away in the caravan.
May you have many more even longer adventures!
Robin and Jenny, Romany Rambler

nb AmyJo said...

Thanks everyone for your comments, most appreciated