Post by Tony C on Aug 31, 2020 18:24:08 GMT
Well I must say, Peterborough is a nice little town, but by the time I got back to the boat after my extended shopping trip (which included a half-decent waterproof jacket and a brolly), I was too tired to care about how nice it was (Cut me a break here, I'm still re-learning to use my legs for walking, after 4 decades of essentially using a car the way a dalek uses their vehicle (except I didn't have guns on my car, more's the pity).
Doing everything on foot is a most unwelcome revelation, and although I'm sure its good for me, I'm beginning to worry about wearing out my feet within the next year or so.
So I staggered into the boat after my two hour traipse, heavily laden with many bags of things to improve my austere and grim existence (including a few small table lamps btw, as the roof LEDs make the lounge look like a police station, at least to my effete tastes).
Without unpacking anything except the large packet of pastrami (because why not), I left Peterborough behind without stopping for lunch, That is most unlike me, but the queues to get into every single eatery were simply too long to comtemplate, and I had to get a shift on.
My objective was to find a quiet mooring with some semblance of phone signal for my first day back at work tomorrow, so I pressed on, at what for my boat is a fair clip.
However, it appeared that most of the population of Peterborough had followed me, because within 5 minutes of arriving at Orton Lock, a large crowd of gongoozlers (I think the collective noun should be a 'murder' of gongoozlers) had assembled to watch my first solo locking.
Aided by a boaty gongoozler (the father of seven child gongoozlers who declined to participate), the locking mercifully went without a hitch (although my God it took an age to fill- it never took this long on youtube).
As we waited for the lock to fill, and I uncharacteristically ran out of polite things to say, the father gongoozler tentatively confessed that he'd always wanted to take a look inside a narrowboat, and I felt it would be churlish to deny him- so I said yes of course, simoultaneously trying to assess the level of chaos and unpleasantness within the boat.
Once I was through and everything was set correctly, the family trooped over to the landing stage and did the boat tour (in groups- its a bit narrow- well its a narrow boat, of course)
I tried in vain to stand in front of the unwashed coffee cup on the worktop (I hadnt stopped since Peterborough), and my heart sank as they took in the plastic bags of shopping, a towel that was trying in vain to dry on a chair, and an assortment of things that had no business cluttering up the lounge.
But they all seemed very impressed, I must say.
My feeling of goodwill was somewhat tempered when I realised that before I left Peterborough I'd taken off my 'public' shirt and donned my 'working' shirt, and I'd been stood next to the father in said 'working' shirt, which I hadn't had time to replace this morning, and had worn through extended tribulations on two successive days.
My problem, with no sense of smell, is that I completely forgot my golden rule- never stand next to a civilian in an enclosed space in my 'working' shirt.
I have no doubt it smelled fairly significantly, and the poor chap must have all but gagged as I stood next to him extolling the virtues of my flyscreen windows.
Moral of the story- never stand within ten feet of a civilian in your working shirt.
Better still, don't have a working shirt.
Just wear clean clothes all the time.