So long, Summer - hello Autumn

Was it really only a few weeks ago that we set the alarm real early to make best use of the moming chill to do some boat jobs or enjoy a walk before it would get too hot and we would hide in the shade?


Now we're shivering in the morning mist, have the diesel stove or fan heater going (depending on wether at anchor or plugged in to an electricity socket), installed a thicker duvet and the electric blanket, dug out socks, fleece jackets, scarves... But then by midday we've discarded all that, have lunch out on deck where it's warmer than inside, contemplate changing into shorts, and life's quite alright again.


Though it does seem we've got spoiled by two Mediterranean winters: much warmer and less rain than here at the Atlantic or rather here 20 miles removed from the Atlantic. Nowadays we're watching the weather forecast not to find out from where the wind will blow, but to see whether it will rain and for how long, so we can plan when to go for a walk, do the laundry, sanding, varnishing and last but not least re-doing the deck seams where the rain has found a way inside.



Pins in the ceiling to pinpoint where the deck is leaking.


However, some nights it gets down to 7º, other nights it doesn't get below 17º, we see butterflies and kingfishers and the hills are getting a green haze.

And there is always an excuse to have a barbecue with the boat people, plus the ex-boaters who've got themselves settled here on a plot of land. This time it was to say goodbye to some yachts who were heading for the Canaries. The boating community is getting smaller as several exchange the river anchorages for a safer berth in a marina with lower winter rates. But still there are plenty of other boats coming upriver and so the scenery keeps changing regularly – and so do the bar crowds.




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