So the next morning arrived and I think it can be said that we were both feeling low and with mixed emotions. Where do we go from here because we literally can’t go on as we had been stuck and on checking the Canal & River Trust website we find at least 2 other locations we need to get by have problems with low water; we can’t go back as we are unable to get by the first sandbank.
This trip was supposed to be fun but at this moment it didn’t feel much like that was how it was panning out.
In this situation I think we can firmly say that ‘Nature Rules!’
At 8.30am we started one of our brain storming sessions – this is how we solve problems or have a debate about a situation…it works for us and am pleased to report that by 10.30am we had a plan coming together. We had previously spent so long planning our trip and the one thing we didn’t think of that would be a problem was lack of water! We could wait for it to rain (and rain) and fill the river again but who knew how long that would take, as we realistically needed at least another meter of depth. The idea of having a plan is to build in some kind of flexibility to allow for unseen situations and so ensure that we progress. I was concerned about trying to go on as felt we would both be on edge all the time waiting for that terrible grinding and crunching sound. Martin was also concerned about the propeller and any damage it may already have or might sustain if we had a repeat problem.
We called Rod at Redhill Marina and discussed our situation, after a ten minute phone call we felt things were starting to come together.
We made plans to go into Redhill Marina the next morning. We would have to fit into their prior booked schedule but would be able to moor there safely, then get them to lift the boat out of the water, we would then have the bottom shot blasted and painted. The new engine delivered there and Martin would fit it. We would then be craned onto a lorry and taken down to Ramsgate and put back in the water down there. Not exactly as we had envisaged the first part of our trip but that’s life…. Once in Ramsgate Martin can complete the Day Skipper practical course (this allows us to cruise in European waters), we can get the new engine trialed at sea and once these things are sorted we can look at dates and he weather and decide if we can get over the Channel this year or if we have to sit out the winter in Ramsgate and wait until next spring.
If we even had a plan B – I think we are probably up to about D or E now………………………., but it is all part of the fun
Not exactly as we planned it but we are safe and happy so can ask for no more. we will continue to make the best of everyday and are happy to share it with those of you who decide to ‘come’ with us.