An early break in the New Forest was to set the ball rolling and needless to say part of that break was to be spent by the water, Annette and I were accompanied by my sister Marion and a relaxing few days were enjoyed in the tranquil New Forest and Solent setting.
Having missed not seeing friends and relatives there were trips to fulfil and these were soon arranged with visits to Sussex and Birmingham. There were of course some early river cruises fitted in plus the commencement of refurbishment work on the boat. The first of these was the planned recovering of the aft deck using a faux grey teak decking. Many days being spent stripping and sanding the deck ready to receive the new covering. This project, well planned and well executed, was a great success and looks beautiful, even this late in the year.
|The new faux teak aft deck|
I'm going to touch briefly on the 'Hen Night' here because although nothing to do with boating or me personally it did take up quite a large part of the early months of the year and I was, reluctantly, drawn into our granddaughters pre-wedding event in all manner of ways from T-shirt pressing to chocolate willy testing, at which point I move on.
Somewhere in amongst the above we did mange to get the boat out on a tidal run down to Cuxton and back and have a bit of a marina social event. Next main event of course was the Platinum Jubilee celebrations and many boats turned out on a Sunday morning and dressed overall formed a grand flotilla down the river from Maidstone to Allington Lock.
Then came, what was for us, the main event, we celebrated our 50th Golden Wedding anniversary with a surprise dinner and weekend stay in a beautiful hotel surrounded by our family and close friends. Some very moving moments, lots of laughter and a wonderful event. In between all these activities we were still managing the odd river cruise and period of boat refurbishment and maintenance but time was against us for any serious periods of cruising. The 'Grand Tour' of North Wales and Lancashire in early August to visit family and friends lead us smartly into another main event. This time the long awaited marriage of our granddaughter to Danny. This was originally planned to take place in Kefalonia in June 2022 but like so much else had been cancelled numerous times until rearranged home here in Kent. All I need to say on this event is 'wonderful'.
At last September saw us able to take a break away from everything and spend some 'pamper time' together in a quiet cabin away from all the hustle and bustle, no cooking, no housework, no rush. Just good food, good entertainment and plenty to drink.
|Sharing, as we have done for 50 years|
And that brings us very much to the end of the 2022 boating (or non-boating) season, or does it?
Just to round off an unbelievable, hectic, fun packed, non-stop year fate had one last deal of the cards - we both became ill with Covid in October!
Still suffering as I write this but on the mend, Annette appears to have dealt with it better than me by recovering quicker.
Now, once fully fit, we are going to refurbish all the woodwork in the wheelhouse as an autumn project.
Bring on 2023!!