They come and go, and at the moment, more are going, and those coming are only temporary.
Ordinarily, we would joke that it could have been something we said, but that is not the case.
crowdA lot of boats are going on the market, and their owners not necessarily upgrading.
One cruiser in particular has been sold three times in the two years we’ve been here. It’s not clear if it’s because it’s a nice boat, too small a craft after ownership and trips out, or worse case scenario, something’s wrong with it (in which case it would probably come up in a survey).

We know of three couples who have changed their narrowboats of various lengths for widebeams, and are enjoying life in one place rather than going out on a regular basis.
wide beam wide beam
Another has recently sold his cruiser and purchased a narrowboat because he wanted more space. With three dogs, it seemed a good idea and we saw his old boat moored up river on our trip to Stratford.
Someone else is changing their cruiser as it is difficult to get on and off without a portable step. The one they are buying is slightly bigger, but with the same access problems. Apparently there is an option to ‘cut a gateway’ in the rear, which will suit them better.

Two couples we know have decided to move back into property, even though the women weren’t keen. One was because the guy was fed up having to turn sideways to get from one end of his boat to the other having put on so much weight, and the other due to financial problems.

Last year, liveaboards for over 35 years had the opportunity to move into a house.
Due to serious health issues, it was too good a chance to miss, and they had a buyer for their 70 footer within weeks.
The new owners took it up river, tied it to a tree in torrential rain and left it unattended.
As the water level rose, the boat tilted, filled with water and sank. It is still partially submerged just outside the lock on the wrong side of the weir boom, and everyone is still trying to work out how they actually got there in the first place.
The original owners are gutted, and the new out of pocket because their insurance was void as they’d gone out when the river was in the Red on the water level warning gauge.

Several have sold up due to ill health, some have simply moved away to cheaper marinas or to become water gypsies, and two single males have not only given up their marital status but their boats as well.

And then there are us.
We are probably classed as permanent fixtures now, and seem to know everyone who comes, stays and goes here. People ask me how I remember names, and it’s quite simple really. At the back of our log book I keep an address book:

Name of Boat                                      Owners                                                Dog

bb 4 6

About pensitivity101

I am a retired number cruncher with a vivid imagination and wacky sense of humour which extends to short stories and poetry. I love to cook and am a bit of a dog whisperer as I get on better with them than people sometimes! We have recently lost our beloved dog Maggie who adopted us as a 7 week old pup in March 2005. We decided to have a photo put on canvas as we had for her predecessor Barney, and now have three pictures of our fur babies on the wall as we found a snapshot of my GSD so had hers done too. From 2014 to 2017 'Home' was a 41 foot narrow boat where we made strong friendships both on and off the water. We were close to nature enjoying swan and duck families for neighbours, and it was a fascinating chapter in our lives. We now reside in a small bungalow on the Lincolnshire coast where we have forged new friendships and interests.
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7 Responses to Farewell

  1. colinandray says:

    I think the columns in your book should be re-arranged, in order of importance from Left to Right:

    Dog’s Name – Boat’s name – Owners name(s)


  2. So funny. I used to walk at 6 a.m. when I worked so I got to know all the dogs who were walked by working guys. Now I point out houses and say Buster lives there or some other dog. Usually don’t remember the names of the people. When I see people out I will say, “You’re Buster’s owner!” and that works just fine. Should have done a spreadsheet!

    • Haha! The number of times we haven’t been recognised (or not recognised someone) because the dog is missing! I remember the dog’s name, but it takes months to recall the owner!

  3. I’ve been to my best friend’s sailboat community on the Chesapeake Bay in Maryland. Many retirees have sold their boat to move to inland lakes. It was a warm, friendly place to spend the summer. Economics took precedent, and younger boaters are not buying in, it seems. ☺

  4. scifihammy says:

    So interesting how times change and neighbours too 🙂

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