Well, after months of planning and after selling my business and our house, we finally made the move out of our 3 bedroom house into our broad beam, narrow canal barge and are in the process of making it home. We’ve been in a few weeks now and I can safely say we are both knackered. Why is moving house so stressful? I can understand it if things go wrong, such as disputes with the buyers etc but for us everything went very smoothly, in fact the buyers couldn’t have been nicer people, but the actual process of organising, packing and moving things especially towards the final day when time was of the essence was so stressful and tiring. We did do everything ourselves though, with Jon’s typical Yorkshire thrift and his determination to not spend 1 penny more than required, we hired a couple of vans and chose not to use a removal company, so I guess we did create the hard work.
We are here though, we are on board and I have to say arriving at the boat around 2.30pm that Friday afternoon, we both sat starring into space and then I fell asleep for 3 hours! I do believe Jon had a little ‘snifter’ of whisky while he sat and stared.
Obviously we haven’t moved everything we owned onto the boat as it would probably sink so, thanks to a well organised shipping container we bought a few months earlier and after spending many weekends lining it out, it is now storing most of our ‘things’ which aren’t needed onboard. Thanks also to my mum, sister and also to Jon’s parents who all seem to have acquired some of our ‘stuff’ in their homes 🙂 The guys at the local tip began nodding or waving at us on a daily basis as they slowly got to know us and their percentage of recycling which they proudly display seemed to go up considerably in those few weeks we were moving thanks to us I’m sure.
Since being on board our new home we have been opening up the boxes we so carefully packed not so long ago and now… yes, more sorting and organising. We are also facing new challenges about living on a boat and I, in particular am learning fast how we need to change the way we live. The first main challenge we face is …Power.
It’s crazy how, when living in a house, we take our necessities for granted. Water, heat and power. We are so good at just turning taps and switches on and ‘Ka-Pow’ the shower comes on with hot steaming water or the hair dryer starts up without you even realising what power that little thing uses. On the boat I’ve had to pack away my hairdryer for now as it is one appliance which does require such a lot of electricity and it’s also something which isn’t particularly necessary, (I’m the one wandering around with the frizzy mop on my head by the way!) The TV is on board, the fridge freezer is in, (after a little ‘tweaking) and we are going to be installing our washing machine next week. Our shower is pretty good, although in the first week I found myself stood happily showering away, all lathered up when there was a funny noise and the water ran out! Aghhh!! or was it Hahahaha! I can’t quite remember now, but yet another learning curve 🙂
Now I realise what we wasted when living in a house and how much easier it was, but I wouldn’t change where we are right now for anything. I have a lot to learn and Jon is slowly teaching me about how boat life works with regards to power and water etc
I will be blogging about our ‘ups and downs‘ in future posts and about how, for example something as simple as turning the standby button off on the TV, has a significant impact on our power usage. We do have a challenge at the moment with the power, but it’s ‘so far so good’ with the heating as we are ‘cosy’ warm most of the time due to an excellent log burner fire which also heats our water and we are finding we are doing most of our cooking on this too as it has a hot plate on it, so far this is my favourite thing on the boat! We do have a gas oven, but Jon starts getting a slight twitch if he see’s me turning it on as it clocks up the penny’s with the gas, so come on all you amazing chef’s send me through some lovely recipes for us to cook in one pan on a log burner stove 🙂
Also, if there’s anyone out there with any tips on creating power on a boat, (we already have a good battery bank, an inverter and 4 solar panels) then please say hi and send those tips over, we’d love to hear from you too 🙂