August Nights

I am not terribly confident that I shall have an undisturbed night’s rest. We reached das Boot yesterday afternoon. There was no one at our end of the marina, so once I had opened up the boat, run the engine for a while and vacuumed away the worst of the dust, I let MasterB out of his travel basket while I unloaded the car. Contrary, he decided the interior of the car was somewhere he’d like to be. I lifted bags onto the grass and opened the boot for the rest: bed linen, food, new ropes, a bag of books for Older Nephew, towels and clothes. MasterB moved to the shelf at the back of the car and looked out, watching my progress.

When at last I picked up the food bags and turned towards das Boot he leapt down and followed me, stopping every now and then to look about him, assess the possibility of danger, sniff the grass. Why didn’t I have a camera in my hand? Then it was a leap on the gunwale, a swift look at the interior, and he was aboard. Great. Continue reading

the end of the day

I’m working on Monday so it’s back to the Smoke tomorrow. The forecast is for
a hot day, so I’ll try to leave in the morning. The evening might be cooler, but there’ll be lots of traffic with people returning at the end of the weekend.

I’d like to be able to stay on. Stay on until I become restless. Right now, being on the boat with some human contact and some internet access, but not too much of either, suits me down to the ground. I’m hanging out with MasterB. Doing a bit of gentle boat cleaning after the rigours of scrubbing the covers, eating lots of salad, drinking lots of water and a bit of wine. The pace is so slow you might not even realise I was moving. I am very happy to not do very much, to recharge my batteries by vegetating.

For the first time in ages I brought my Lumix camera with me. I haven’t taken many pictures, but just using it again reminds me what a different experience it is to my trusty little Olympus,.

I’d like to stay and let the sights and sounds of summer in the country sink into me, so that the big skies, the scent of lavender, the bees, the pennants moving in the breeze, the squawk of the moorhen, the swan dipping its neck into the sun reflected water, are all filling my senses, so that Brexit, Trump and all the other noise and nonsense dims into insignificance for a while.  Continue reading

In the Pre Dawn

Someone in the room next to mine has an early start. I imagine like me s/he has opted for sleep in a bed between flights, and a pre-dawn trip to the airport will be on the itinerary.

I am in Singapore. Though having only seen the airport and the hotel, I can’t say I have much of a sense of the place. Tomorrow I fly on to Melbourne, so this is a funny little hiatus where at 4.30 am local time, I am wondering how much money need to change, and indeed where I am going to go. Last night, before I fell into bed, I had been thinking of heading into Singapore City. Now I am wondering about staying local where it seems like there are coastal walks and a boat ride to an ‘unspoilt’ island.

However, if I don’t go back to sleep soon, I may be lying around the hotel reading my book. A bit of a waste, and I realise now I should have considered what I was going to do here and got organised some time in advance.

The plane ride was fine. At Heathrow someone called my name and I turned to see a woman with whom I had worked on a project some five or six years ago. We stood and chatted for about half an hour, and then it was time to slog out to my boarding gate. Heathrow is massive, but I still hadn’t been able to find any small bottles of face cream for sale that had the leaping bunny symbol. Continue reading

Sunny Morning

It rained all night. Every time I woke up, usually because Not Cat bounced on me, but once because he had a poo and the smell filled the boat, demanding urgent attention, I could hear the rain beating down It was quite warm though, and I was pushing my extra covers away.
When morning came, and Not Cat was asleep across my legs, it was quiet. The boat rocked gently. I lifted the curtain and saw blue skies. I stretched. Not Cat opened his eyes and stretched too, and watched me. I invited him to say good morning. He continued to watch me. I closed my eyes again.
A while later, I woke properly. Not Cat rubbed my nose with his. He wanted to go out, but the deal was he had to wear his new harness. He went back to bed. I went over to the shower block for some Spartan ablutions. Continue reading

Gentle Snoring

I am off to bath and bed in a minute. I fetched Not Cat indoors a few minutes ago. He took a while to respond to my jingling keys, and once in, raced round the flat like it was Le Mans, yowled to go out and then jumped on the sofa and fell asleep.
His capacity to go from wide awake and quite bonkers to sound asleep in seconds amuses and amazes me.
My own bedtime routine takes a bit longer.
Sweet dreams.

A River of Stones Day 9 Foxes

I wake suddenly. It must be about four. Something has made a loud noise. I can feel the echo of it in my quitted sleep; more vibration than sound. I lie and listen. Nothing. Something. I get up and open the shutters. The cat climbs onto the sill and we see a fox race out of the garden. Another movement catches my eye. A larger fox is scurrying along the wall to the left. The cat is alert, focused, but his attention is elsewhere. I follow his line of attention just in time to see a small, probably female, fox scramble over the roof of the bike rack and leap onto the ground. She too races from the garden. The larger fox is swift in his pursuit. There are a few sharp barks, then silence. The window has steamed with our condensed breath. Cat and human gaze out onto the now still garden for a few more moments and then return to bed and sleep.