Pete is ill again......I don't think that he was actually fully recovered from the last episode! I saw a post this morning about a study that found that husbands stress women out more than children - yes they do, especially when they answer 'I'm fine' in response to daily enquiries about how they feel, because you have a suspicion they are not quite right!! I realised that he had a fever at 4am, which spurred me to get up and fetch ibuprofen, put the kettle on, stoke the fire and crush a Garlic clove for his consumption, which he didn't dare refuse as he knew that I was cross that he stayed out all afternoon chopping wood with Toastie yesterday.
We left the services by Blisworth Marina early on Saturday morning and were moored up in lovely Stoke Bruerne by 8.15am, our first visit in 2 years. The sky was grey and it was clear that the fine rain was set in for the day. Pete was all for trading, but a quick scan of the towpath led to my assessing, that there was unlikely to be much footfall today and it was probably more sensible to catch up on some jobs and admin. In hindsight, I wish that I had made himself stay indoors and relax after a busy week of cruising in the cold and a couple of days spent with Toastie, helping a boater friend out, by replacing a dangerous wood burner and flue with fist sized holes - goodness knows how Dave had not succumbed to CO2 poisoning!! He did say that the morning after his replacement burner was fitted, that it was the first time that he had not woken up with a banging headache .
Anyway, himself is in bed coughing and sneezing well and that is where I would prefer him to stay. I have a large pot of bean & vegetable Fasolia Soup on the stove bubbling away, the birds are already singing and the forecast predicts a lovely day with prolonged spells of sunshine, so I am looking forward to setting up and trading today. It is still dark at 06.15am due to the clocks going back, which is strange, but this evening will see the first lighter evening of official Summertime. The weather does still have a bit of catching up to do, stubbornly refusing to yield to the expectations of the seasonal Calendar, but it is good to think of Warm Summer evenings, sitting out on the towpath with friends old and new, getting closer and the long dark, cold winter and hopefully illness, soon to be behind us.
After finally escaping the BCN (Birmingham Canal Network) yesterday and setting forth on our 2018 scheduled adventures, we had planned to make an early start down the Lapworth Flight this morning, but the pitter patter on the roof prompting a reccy out of the porthole, confirmed that it was raining hard!
We were awoken early, 6.05am to be precise, by Sparta chasing up and down the corridor after whatever poor little creature he had brought in to play with. Armed with my trusty sniffer dog Ruby, we located said small terrified furry behind the bedroom door, I picked him up, popped him into a suitable receptacle and then released the poor little thing back onto the towpath.
By that time I was wide awake, so popped the kettle on for coffee and picked up my iPad to check what is going on in everyone else’s world.
My fb was filled with the successes of children from the performing arts school that I used to teach at, who yesterday walked away from the Woodley Festival with a haul of individual and group medals for Acting & Musical Theatre. Woodley was my final festival with them last year and so it was a bit of a landmark day. It made my heart swell to look at their happy smiling faces in the photos, posted by proud parents and their proud teacher, to whom they are a credit and to whom so much credit is due, for her outstanding work with them this weekend and over the past year. I remain proud of and a keen supporter of every student I have ever taught, but I am especially proud of this teacher, whom I first met when she started at Sixth Sense Theatre aged just 5. We reconnected about 4 years ago, when I started teaching her own 5 year old daughter. She was on a career path, but it was clear that it was not a career in which she was utilising her immense creative talents and abilities or a path which was making her particularly happy. Skip forward 4 years and she is now in a job that she loves, lives and breathes and is brilliant at, and I have experienced first hand, how seeing potential in others can literally change their life, which is probably the most rewarding experience for any teacher. Looking at those photos, I did feel a pang of nostalgia, for something that was so much a part of me for so many years, but it was time and “All the art of living lies in a fine mingling of letting go and holding on”(Havelock Ellis). so I hold on to my memories and the friendships that I have made, but let go of what it is now someone else’s turn to take forward, whilst we fully embrace our floating trading life and write new life chapters.
It still hasn't stopped raining, but we do need to get the boat to where the car has been moved on to by tomorrow night as it is an Isabel (Isabel is Pete’s elderly second cousin) week, so it is time to do some locks.
4 locks to be precise after which the sogginess of the day was given into and we and the dogs retired indoors to dry off - there is no rain forecast for tomorrow .... so far!