mercredi 23 novembre 2011


Well, we had a busy week last week as it was my birthday, John took me out to lunch on Wednesday and then on Sunday night he gave me a dinner party. He cooked 'Coq au vin' for 8 and did really well!! We had smoked salmon on tomato herb bread (which John made himself) for starters and apple pie and cream for pudding! We had a lovely time and I had 3 lovely gifts from our french friends... thank you everyone once more!!
Today John is busy cutting up the 4 stares of wood that we have just had delivered to us. We ordered it too long as it is cheaper..... so now John  has to cut it before stacking it on top of our boat!!

John is teaching 2 people to play the guitar in exchange for french lessons, he will be better at french, than I am soon.........
We had quite a jolly weekend as we went out with 3 other boat owners on saturday night. Two of them are putting their boats to bed for the winter and we couldnt resist taking this photo of John doing his 'James Bond' imitation!!!

Well,  I think that is all our news for now, so I'll leave you with another fab photo of our little man.......

lundi 14 novembre 2011


We have been resident in our usual little spot in Auxerre for a week now, (having moved a week ago  to the exact spot we spent last winter,) and it feels like we have never left!! John is doing his usual trick of showing people over our home whenever people turn up for a stroll along the river bank.. so I'm trying to keep it clean and tidy most of the time!!
His penchant for trailing in the unsuspecting paid off last wednesday when a young lady called Elodie spent the evening with us. She was very sweet and when she left she invited us to dinner tonight so we shall report back sometime this week about that!!
Thursday we entertained again, this time a single chap who is living aboard his huge peniche the other side of the river, we spent a good evening and then Friday night we were invited to our old friends Marie-Jo and Michelle for dinner. We had 'Raclette' a kind of toasted cheese and potato dish (meat too if you want, but not for me...). It is lovely, everyone having a little non stick pan in which you toast your portion of cheese, on a little cooker on the table, and then pour over the small new potatoes, we ate sooooo much!! Then we were taught how to play 'Atout' a french card game. It was a bit confusing and when we left we were still not sure how to play it properly!!! it was 1.30am when we staggered back to the boat through a mysterious mist with only us awake...very romantic!!
Yesterday we watched the herons flying over us to their warmer climes making a huge noise and keeping perfect formation, a real natural wonder of the world!!

It was a lovely crisp sunny day so having hung out the washing (which dried outside despite it being the middle of November) we went for a walk down a lovely avenue of trees to see what was at the end....

What fantastic delights waited for us??


Yep a psychiatric hospital!!! Highly suitable for 2 adults taking a cat for a walk on a lead!!!!

But we both agreed we wouldn't mind being 'treated' in the chateau!!

There were signs everywhere saying 'no entry' but we walked around the garden looking as though we were meant to be there and no-one challenged us!!! In fact many people spoke to us and admired Patrice!!

When we got back we watched 'Frozen Planet' Patrice's favourite programme and as usual he tried to catch the penguins........!!!

Still we had had a lovely day, and I just have to show you my all-time favourite photo of Patrice which summons up all our thoughts of Autumn in this magical land......

Fab isn't it????!!!

vendredi 4 novembre 2011


Well we had a huge scare last night. The weather was awful with gusty winds and torrential rain... we were watching TV when there was a sudden crash above us and John went to see what had happened... As he didnt immediately return I followed him up to the wheelhouse to see part of the roof missing, torrential rain pouring down, a very scared kitten and John outside doing things with a boathook.....
I put Patrice downstairs, and opened the backdoor. John asked me to hang on to the middle section of the roof whilst he used his legs to get the roof out of the river. The wind was really howling and it was difficult to stand up, eventually he managed to get the roof on to the top of the boat and then very gingerly back into place on the wheelhouse roof. I was so scared he would fall as you know he doesn't swim too well......
Eventually it was done with the roof all covered in leaves and debris from the river- inside!!!
Meanwhile Patrice decided to try and make a run for it and then the TV died.... all in all NOT a good evening, we were both glad to go to sleep!!!!
 The remains of the leaves and debris still clinging to the roof of the wheelhouse this morning....Our Morroccan lantern was still clinging to the underside but is sadly rather smashed from the experience!!

Patrice defending his home from a red setter who thought he would like to visit, he hadnt taken our 'Guard-cat' into consideration!! The leaves and debris behind the boat where our roof landed!!

mercredi 2 novembre 2011


Well after our really busy summer, we are now back in Auxerre where we will stay until 1st April next year. We are not quite in the same position as last year, but we getting nicely bedded down again. It is strange not to be moving around any more and I have to say that I do miss it... Still we have managed to install the new computer (lets hope no more viruses for a few years....) and also a new satellite dish and freesat box with a recorder, all very technical and it took quite a while to do it while John disappeared as he is absolutely no use with anything technical!!!
We had some old friends round for dinner last saturday night, I cooked a huge chilli (which all went) and our guests felt so welcome that it was nearly 3am before they left us!! Still we had a great time though I suspect that there were a few headaches on Sunday......!!
Last night we had a couple round who are also staying the winter in Auxerre, and so I suppose you could call them our neighbours!! They said they would come for one drink  but 3 hours later said their goodbyes so I suppose that they felt welcome too!!
Today is sunny which makes a change from the last few rainy days and to celebrate I have a long washing line blowing in the gentle breeze.....

Well, no more news for now......


Our 1st view of Auxerre on our return, the trees are such beautiful colours...

Patrice is not too sure about the swans and they HATE him!!!

 As you can see by the number of bottles, a good time was definitely being had!!! And no, they had to go outside for their cigarette.... its a NO SMOKING boat!!
The Puddle Stone in her winter moorings.!