Saturday, 10 July 2010

A Day of Rest

As Amble is a pleasant place, with all the facilities we need, and last week's mileage was good, we opted to make today a rest day, and stay another night.

That's not to say we did nothing. There were jobs to be done on the boat too. Sailing is not all glamour.

So this morning was a lie in , 8am! Then pump out the muck from the bottom of the diesel tank, and top up with fresh diesel. Pumping is done by hand using a scaled down version of the 1920s fireman's stirrup pump. one person operates the pump (me) while the other probes the bottom of the tank with a long probe on the inlet tube. The outlet goes to a waste oil container.

Robin was a bit miffed that I took an extra couple of minutes to put on shorts for the pumping out, but understood why when my legs got covered in diesel and gunk by the end of the operation. But it was done, and I went off for a loooong warm shower in the marina toilet block.

We can shower on board, but as we carry all our fresh water with us, they have to be short. Long showers are a luxury.

Then came the fun part of the day. We took the local bus from Amble town square to Warkworth village, to see the castle. The route followed the river bank as it wound down the valley, giving time to see the large number of swans on the water, and the sheep-filled fields. Warkworth itself is very pretty, a cross between hilly Peak District and golden stone, flower filled Cotswolds. The castle was well worth a visit, being the setting of several scenes of Shakespeare's Henry IV plays.

Lunch in the Hermitage Inn, one of Warkworth's many watering holes. I had King Scallops, one of Robin's favourites, but he was put off because they were served with black pudding, opting for fish pie instead.

Back to the boat on the bus, and I had an afternoon nap. When I woke we worked on greasing the steering leg and topped up the water. The galley was topped up from the stores and fresh milk and bread from the town.

The skipper of the boat that ran pleasure trips out to the RSPB bird reserve on Coquet Island, met us on the pontoon and said that the strong winds of yesterday afternoon had still been blowing today. This evening saw a heavy rainstorm. Quite cosy nestled up in our floating home while the rain drums on the roof. Saves cleaning the decks too.

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