Wednesday, 23 December 2009

Home for Christmas

...Well I never thought I would be, and it feels good!
The village is looking lovely with Christmas tree aglow on the green. Houses using a years supply of electricity in two days on displays of lights that would put Disneyworld to shame. Hundreds of people with vacant expressions and long lists walkng aimlessly around the supermarket in search of more of anything that might possibly run out in the one day that the shops are closed. And I love it.
Mellors is getting excited too.
The trauma of getting him off the boat, into the cat basket and across the lock, far behind him now as he smells the ham cooking and awaits the inevitable spillage of food during my, often failed attempts to emulate the goddess that is Delia. It doesn't seem to matter what food, anything goes as it is even more attractive to him when stolen from under my nose.
He has settled in very quickly and has not yet stopped purring. He has taken up his place in the window, watching and waiting for his old enemy, the cat next door to appear. Their relationship, as with most of Mellor's relationships was always a little troubled. They would take it in turns to sit in the middle of each others back garden paths, preventing the other from entering the house.
All has been reasonably quiet so far, but hoses are primed and at the ready on both sides of the fence, in preparation for the inevitable battle.
I have had a few comments about my remark in the last blog, re the village chip shop. I have to say, I take it all back and offer my apologies. I treated myself to a very delicious skate and chips the other evening, one of the best meals I have tasted in a long time.
So, snow on the ground, a full fridge (And drinks cupboard), family and friends around - all is well with the world.
I wish you all a peaceful and happy time and look forward to an even better 2010.

p.s. the picture is the sand dunes not the Alps.

x Tillie x

Monday, 7 December 2009

On Dry Land

Surprisingly, I have had many requests to continue 'blogging' even though I am now a land lubber. I guess this may mean I will lose some of my canal dweller followers, although I hope not as I would like to keep in touch with what is happening on the water. You can take the girl out of the Grand Union, but you can't take the Grand Union etc etc.
I moved Argy to his final (for the moment) resting place and, true to form, he put up a fight to the last.
It was a very windy day, but that does not come close to explaining, how, when I untied the ropes, Argy did an extremely swift turn around and headed off in the opposite direction, leaving me, hanging on for dear life, my feet getting nearer and nearer the edge of the cut, sliding rapidly through the mud as if in a losing tug o'war team.
I managed to hang on however, it is surprising what strength you can muster in a crisis. After a few choice words, (not for publication) I leapt on his rear end like a seasoned rodeo rider, took control of the tiller for the last time and promptly burst into tears.
These last few weeks have really taken their toll on my emotions and I don't think I realised, quite how much I will miss the canal life.
I soon had to pull myself together however to narrowly avoid hitting a group of canoeists who had also decided to venture out in the force nine gale, and were managing with slightly more difficulty than I was,to travel in a straight line that day.
I am now wondering if there is a collective name for canoeists - a scull maybe?
I digress, unusual for me I know.
Anyway, it was back to the car, or rather two cars, as both Kerry's and mine were loaded up to the roof with what seemed,to have expanded overnight, from a few possessions into a houseful.
We set off for Norfolk with the beautiful Abigail in her child seat looking nervously at the massive towers of saucepans, clothes and books which surrounded her.
And where on earth did all those coat hangers come from? It is a well known fact that they breed in wardrobes and I think the canal must be a particularly fertile place as they seem to outnumber my clothes by at least two to one.
So, my tenant from hell hell is over and I am back in Nelson's country.
The people are still as welcoming, the skies still as big, the sunsets still as magnificent and they still haven't changed the fat at the village chip shop.
I am certain there will be many more tales to come.