It’s been an eventful couple of weeks since I wrote my last/first blog post. I finally moved out of my house after lots of packing, cleaning, and a few arguments with letting agents, and am now getting to grips with life on the water full time. I’ve also been on holiday to Malta, which was lovely – a story for another time.
I was initially quite anxious about moving on full-time, as it seemed like there was a lot to learn about the practicalities of living on a boat which I didn’t yet know. My first night didn’t do much to allay my fears! Having successfully made myself a cup of tea earlier in the day, I ventured into the kitchen to make dinner only to discover that none of the electrics were working (except the lights, which baffled me even further). I panicked. How could I possibly have broken the boat already?! I checked the fuse box, I checked the battery percentage (87%), and anxiously sent out “Help!” text messages to my house(boat)mates. Thankfully one was on her way home anyway and was able to work out very quickly what was wrong. It transpired that the battery gauge was broken – a problem now fixed, thankfully – and had been cutting out all electrics except the lights below 90% rather than the 60% I’d been warned about. All I had to do was turn the generator on, and I could have fixed the problem within seconds.
I’ve been living here now for about a week full-time, and I’m finally starting to feel like I know how most of the systems on the boat work. I’ve got to grips with the generator, the water pump, the heating, the toilets, and have even become adept at removing very large spiders without screaming. I’ve still got a few things to figure out – like making a fire when the weather gets a bit colder – but I’m definitely much less intimidated by the whole situation than I was before.
I also think it’s been really valuable for me to have to think about how much electricity and water I use on a daily basis. The water on the boat is pumped in directly from the river and then filtered so that it’s clean enough to drink and it takes a really long time to pump and filter enough to fill the whole tank. When I first moved in, the pump hadn’t been running much due to people being on holiday, so we were having to be extremely careful with water usage, and even now that the tank is fairly full, knowing how long it takes to pump water on to the boat stops you taking it for granted and makes you really conscious of how much water you’re using – how long you spend in the shower, how wasteful you are when doing the washing up, and how much water you really need to cook your broccoli 🙂
…And I still havent fallen in!