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Sept 29th - heading out!

Well, what a weekend!


After spending a pleasant day in Ely on Friday, which included a visit from Gareth and Indy during the afternoon, Vicki and Ben arrived around 5.00pm and we headed off to Cambridge with them to collect the removal van.   Once we had the van we had to go to Ben’s house to pick up a bed settee, then to Tesco’s to buy a washing machine, then over to Gareth’s to collect Vicki’s dining table and chairs!  With the van loaded we then headed over to Wilburton to Vicki’s new house to unload it. By this time we were all hungry and very thirsty!  Clive and I drove back to Ely in the van and ended up going to an all-you-can-eat Chinese buffet just around the corner from our moorings.  It was rather mediocre but in all fairness it was 10.00pm by this time and the food had probably been sitting around for a while!  However it was food and it hit the spot then we wandered back to the boat and went to bed!


Saturday 26th dawned bright and fair fortunately.  Vicki and Ben arrived soon after 9.00am and Gareth and Indy a short while later.  The plan was that I would keep Indy with me (out of the way!) whilst the rest of them did the moving. 


Indy helped me to make a curry first of all then that done she and I decided to go and have some fun! We had a quite a walk but finally arrived at Planet Zoom,which is an indoor playground for kids – its brilliant! 

Planet Zoom!


Indy had great fun climbing up the various rope nets,squeezing through big sponge rollers, leaping into the ball pool and rolling about on huge balls – it was great to watch too!  We had a spot of lunch and a bit more playing then we headed over to Tesco’s to get a few bits and whilst we were in there Vicki phoned to ask if I would like a lift back to the boat – perfect timing!  In actual fact though we didn’t go back to the boat, we went back to the new house to have a look around.  Its amazing just how big an empty house looks and how much it shrinks when you put everything in it! 


One of the weird things for us was seeing our stuff again.  As Vicki has so much room in her new house it was agreed to take all our stuff out of storage and take it to Vicki’s.  She will use the few bits of furniture that we had in there, not much really but what there was will be very useful to her.  The majority of our stuff is just boxes full of books, some vac bags full of clothes and other chattels that we have accumulated over the years.  I really had to stop myself from looking through the boxes though - I had already decided last September what should come to the boat and what shouldn't and I knew that if I looked I would find things I was sure I couldn't live without, even though I had managed perfectly well for over twelve months!


There was one more run to be done so Indy and I went off to explore the local playground and spent a lovely hour or so wandering round the playing fields collecting conkers and acorns and Indy was delighted when I showed her how sycamore keys spin like helicopters when you throw them in the air! 

Throwing Sycamore keys!

Indy also had fun playing in the little playground on the swings, slide, rope and climbing net!  An hour had passed really quickly and it was time to head back.  We were just walking back towards the house when first Vicki and Ben passed us in the car and a few minutes later Clive and Gareth in the van. When the last lot of stuff was unloaded we decided to call it a day and all headed back to the boat for my curry!  However I suddenly realised that I only have four of everything on the boat – plates, knives and forks etc and there were five adults and a child - oops!  Sudden inspiration – the picnic set!  I managed to dig out some more cutlery, a plastic plate for Indy and I ate my curry out of a bowl!  Once everybody was fed and watered they all said goodbye and went home.  We were exhausted and went straight to bed!


Sunday 27th – the plan for today was to ensure that the flat in Sutton was completely emptied and cleaned from top to bottom.  There were still a few heavy items to move; the fridge, chest freezer and oven.  Clive and Ben managed to get all of these down the stairs and into the van then they headed over to the house to unload them.  Meanwhile Vicki and I set to cleaning up.  Not long before Clive and I moved onto the boat we had purchased a carpet/hard floor shampooer and we had left this with Vicki.  Unfortunately though she had never been able to use it because the instructions weren't with it!  I decided to have a go, having used it before.  After a bit of head scratching I finally managed to figure it out and set to cleaning the bedroom carpet – it worked a treat!  I also managed to do part of the hall carpet,which is under the stairs and wouldn’t need to be walked on again.   We didn’t get it all finished but as Vicki had the day off on Monday as well we decided to stick around for one more day and help her to finish the flat off and also try and consolidate all the boxes at her new house. 


We drove back to Ely to have a bit of a wash and brush up then back to Cambridge to drop off the van.  Vicki, Ben and Gareth met us there and we went for a lovely meal in Cambridge. Clive and I then said our final goodbyes to Gareth and Ben and Vicki brought us back to the boat.


Monday 28th – Vicki came over and she and I went to Tesco’s first.  Vicki wanted to stock up on food and a few other essentials for her new house and I wanted to stock up before we left Ely.  Then back to the boat to collect Clive and head over to Vicki’s new house.  We left Clive there to sort boxes and keep the cat company and Vicki and I headed back to Sutton to sort out the flat.  We soon had it looking spic and span and finally locked the door – job done!


Clive had done a great job back at the house.  Now all our boxes are stacked in Vicki's little bedroom (it’s full!) and her house is looking much tidier and more spacious again.  The cat by the way has settled in beautifully.  She has been out in the garden and acquainted herself with all the new smells etc but all in all seems quite unfazed by the whole thing.  Well, she has a lot more space now!


Vicki drove us back to the boat and had a final meal with us then we had to say goodbye!  Although we are really looking forward to renewing our adventure we have enjoyed seeing lots of Vicki and Gareth and Indy of course and also its been nice getting to know Ben, Vicki’s lovely boyfriend.  We are really going to miss them all!


Monday 29th September – Elvis has left the building!


Yes we have finally set off and left Ely behind us.  Our plan is to get to the Denver Sluice in time to go through on the tide, which is about 3.30 this afternoon.  Once through we will need to find somewhere to moor for the night and as far as we can remember the nearest moorings are at Outwell, which is about two hours cruise from Denver, where we moored the night before coming through the Sluice on June 27th.  It will be a bit touch and go as the moorings are quite small and it will also probably be getting dark by the time we arrive!


By the way, today is our 36th weddinganniversary!


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