jeudi 31 mai 2012

01.06.12 Friday

We are waiting for my daughter to arrive with her family so I thought it would be a good opportunity to update the blog, I really dont know where the past 10 days have gone!!!
 This is a huge chinese restaurant and hotel which marks the junction of the Seine with the Marne. We were glad to leave the |Seine behind with its unfriendly huge locks and the weather was just awful while we were on it, which I think coloured our impressions of it!
 Our first lock in the Marne was over and we filled up with water at the lock. We were rather perturbed to see an inflatable with 2 men in it approaching us in the lock. John said they could just wait for us to finish when I realised they were River Police!!!! This is them approaching another barge. They asked us if we had seen anything "Surprising", when we asked what they meant they said a body........ Thankfully that surprising element did not appear to us......
 Entering the tunnel at the beginning of the Marne
 A weird vessel in Nogent sur Marne. A very upmarket town whose marina wanted 33 euros for us to stay the night!!! Needless to say we moved on!!
 I dont know why this picture is sideway but it shows a tree growing through the roof of the restaurant.  I cant even delete it and try again so it will stay on its side I'm afraid.
 Lovely moorings at Lagny sur Marne, where we moved our chicken from the BBQ at the bow to the mast. We like to move him around.
 Sadly John's knot tying hasnt improved and the Cockerel fell upside down. he really must do better!!
 I just love the way the street cleaning machine is called a "Glutton"!!
 The stained windows in the church at Lagny are wonderful, this picture doesnt really do it justice!
 Doing the french thing and twiddling with a beer in the town square.
 Our moorings at Meaux opposite the town beach. A rainbow appeared but it was brilliant sunshine at the time so we dont really understand what that was all about.......

We returned to Lagny from Meaux to await Dominy's arrival, as we werent that impressed with the town moorings there.  We have met people who did stay there and they said it was rather noisy and there were several people sleeping rough there. Not really what I want the little ones to see on their holiday.
As usual I finish with a cute photo of Patrice. The weather has been just wonderful for the last week with unbroken sunny days and our suntans have improved quite a bit. But it was just too hot for Patrice who stretched out in front of our bow camera and VHF radio. The radio didnt go off thankfully, I think he would have had a purple fit!!!!!  We will now enjoy our visitors and catch up with the blog next week!

lundi 21 mai 2012


Thought I would take this opportunity to update the blog as rain has stopped play today.... It was pouring hard when we woke up and it just hasn't stopped, so much as we would like to finish our time on the Seine we have stayed put with hopefully only a day's travel to our adventure on the Marne beginning.  The Seine is massive and the nearer we got to Paris the more industrialised it became with our encountering huge giants of boats which don't even seem to see us. I can't say we have enjoyed the Seine which we were both looking forward to so much. It is a full time job just staying alive, the current is so strong and the locks are massive and very unfriendly, give us canals anyday!

 We encountered this lock-keeper who, for the benefit of Darcey, was seen catching crocodiles in the lock........
 The old castle in Monteraux Fault Yonne is being renovated so they have erected this covering around the walls whilst it is being done. The pictures are in fact painted onto a giant backdrop!
 My hero Napolean, a fine statue in Monteraux.
 An ancient hospice in Monteraux which was built by the' Poor Daughters of Mercy' in the 1600's.
 Our moorings in Monteraux, a dodgy pontoon for which they charged us 12 euros for one night, and they charged us for half our length of boat! Goodness knows what they should have charged us!!
 We moored here at Samois sur Seine for the night on Friday, where to our amazement we met up with our old friends of ' Cave Vagabonde'... This small speedboat came at us whilst we were looking for moorings and as I was thinking "what twit is that coming straight at us", I recognised Elio!!! We had a lovely time with them that evening, we were invited to go to the island with them for a BBQ and sleepover at 10.30pm but we declined.......
 Good job we did as this is their boat nestling on the island but with no apparent sign of life at 11.30 am the next day!

 5 pictures of the types of massive cargo ships we are encountering on the Seine.
 We moored just above 'Coudray No 7' ecluse on Saturday evening, in the middle of a thunderstorm with torrential rain. It all started suddenly and we did not have time to put up the windscreen in the wheelhouse and everything got soaked including Patrice!

 This is some of the architecture seen whilst travelling through Melun. It also hosts an enormous victorian built prison which is still in use, on an island in the middle of the river.
 Two swans showing what good parents they are in looking after the youngsters!!
 An idyllic cutting off the Seine, sadly not big enough for us to access but these people waved merrily to us as we went by!
 This is our mooring for Sunday night, sadly Mr heron did not stay to welcome us but flew off smartly when he realised we were going to moor there.

The pontoon was a bit small for us but we just managed to fit on it. We thought only for one night but as I said earlier we are here two due to the very wet weather!! I did think I would do the ironing but Patrice tried to put me off the idea.......

mercredi 16 mai 2012


We left Sens nice and early today as wanted to get some Kms under our belt today, but we were held up at the first lock waiting for this massive beast to lock through before we were allowed to enter!! It really made us feel like a toy boat!

The river is still in full flow, not helped by the huge downpour we had yesterday at Sens, cutting short our sight seeing trip.  It means that we are making really good time for my daughter's visit to us at the end of the month, which at least means she wont have such a long trip as she had last year!

 The scenery has been fab today with quite a few of these really picturesque houses along the edge of the river. This one is just the other side of Pont sur Yonne where we stopped for our lunch.
Here we are moored in absolute wilderness, the first time since we left Migennes on Saturday, this is where we really like to moor rather than town quays despite there not being any water or electricity here! Mind you with our lovely new battery stack we have oodles of power now! If you look carefully you can see Patrice enjoying the wild flowers! ( a dark brown blob to the right of the barge in the long grass)

mardi 15 mai 2012


Well, having left Auxerre as expected on 29th March we took the boat to the boatyard in migennes and returned to the UK for Easter with our respective families. We returned to France 15.04.12 and were unable to unpack the car as we had been put the other side of 2 massive hulks in the boatyard, so we moved around to the basin in Migennes for a couple of days before setting off on our summer travels. Then it rained and rained and rained..... and the River Yonne was shut to all boating as the river was in full flood. we kept asking the eclusier who eventually said that we could go the next day... So we packed up, got into the lock and then were told that the river was still forbidden....... so we had to go backwards out of the lock and returned to our mooring in the basin again. After a further 10 days we were told we could go so finally on the 12th may 2012 we set off on our travels.... I took a few pictures in Migennes so here they are with a brief description of what they are about!!!!

 We went to a "Vide Grenier" (literally empty the attics, a sort of jumble sale crossed with a boot fair!!!) This is John looking at some trench art, as you can see from the leaden skies it was raining again!!
 Two dogs having a short back and sides at the lock side!!!

John hanging about by the dustbins with the " dustbin raiders" from left to right, John, Jean, Patrice and Bernard.

Bernard's mum wearing a hat I had thrown out in the bin which Jean (not to be confused with John) had rescued from the bin and given to her!!! They sure take recycling very seriously in Migennes!!

 The tiniest canal boat we've ever seen... it is 7 metres long!!!!!!
 On way at last, but the weirs are pouring water very quickly and it is quite scarey!!
 Two duck who had made their home on a log in the fast flowing river, sadly they seem to have had a disagreement!!
 Our first night away from Migennes we stayed at Joigny, and Patrice took part in his favourite holiday pastime of climbing trees!
 Having left Joigny we made for Villeneuve sur Yonne, the weirs are still flowing extra extra fast, mind you it makes us travel more quickly!!
 Cygnets sitting on the back of their parent, if you look closely you can see them on the front swan!
 This is the life, lovely hot weather and beautiful scenery on our way to Sens.