Life on a narrowboat always greatly appealed to me, although it’s a life best suited to a singleton. In my opinion. I personally wouldn’t want to share quite such a limited amount of living space with another. I like solitude, even extended periods of it. I like the rural setting. I like living by, or in this case, on the water. And who wouldn’t like to be able to travel the country without ever leaving home? Modern technology means that you can cram so much more into the smallish space. Flatscreen televisions, microwaves and a kindle for a library’s worth of books. An iPad to keep one in touch with the world. And I noticed quite a few narrowboats with solar panels, which must keep down the already reasonable costs of narrowboat life. They don’t look pretty though. Mr Musk should get to work on a solution.
One can try out waterborne life before taking the splunge and splurging on a narrowboat. Renting boats for long weekends or even the whole week has long been a popular choice for staycationers. But it sure is a pricey holiday. Money better spent on Spanish trip if you ask me, where there’s a far better chance of finding some decent weather. And food. Perhaps renting a boat just for the day is a little less risky. But still pricey.
In short, I’m unlikely to ever be found living on a narrowboat. Or taking a holiday on one. But I still like the canals, for walks and bike rides. There’s hundreds of miles of them in the country, although go carefully on the canals around Manchester. Is there a serial killer, or isn’t there? Who knows for sure. Well, I guess the serial killer would know. The nearest to us in a bit of a trip but a safe distance from the Manchester ‘no-go’ canal zone. We – myself, Mrs P and two friends, caught the train to Bradford on Avon, had lunch and began our stroll to Avoncliff. Where we stopped for a drink. It’s a famous stretch of the Kennet and Avon canal, with a fabulous aqueduct carrying the canal over the river and train tracks far below.
Next time I may go alone, with my bike. It’s a very easy ten mile ride along the towpath to Bath Spa. Have I piqued your interest in the UK’s canal system? There is, naturally, a television series devoted to them, hosted by Tim West and Prunella Scales. You might know the latter as Sybil, Basil Fawlty’s rather domineering wife. It’s quite the journey that they go on – she is, sadly, in the early stages of dementia, a topic that they cover very sensitively.