Tuesday, 26 October 2010

Foraging for wood

We are novice foragers in the wood department, well, we haven't done it for at least 8 years since we converted from solid fuel to diesel when on Sans Souci.  After last winter, we've installed a second stove in the back of Beefur , which is fuelled by coal & wood, as well as the diesel fire in the front.  So we now have two different forms of heating, so in theory will be sorted for the cold winter ahead..........   Which brings us to our first log spotting foray heading down the Staffs & Worcs.

I was inside the boat pottering about when Dave puts the boat into reverse, nothing unusual with that at this time of year with all the leaves in the water, but the reverse continued, so I jumped out of the front doors to see what the problem was.  "What's wrong" I shout from the front.  Dave makes the sign of a "T" with his two hands. "Do you want a cup of tea" I shout back at him.  "No", and frantically make the "T" sign again.  "What do you want?"    "T"  "What?"  "T!!"  "What?"   Dave puts engine in neutral, "Don't you remember the new sign we discussed yesterday?"  He says.  No - I had no idea what he was talking about.  "Tree!  Tree!  Fuel for the Fire!   Tree!" he shouts.  Ah yes, T for Tree, I remember now, it seemed a good signal when we discussed it last night.  So we reversed to the spot where the wood was spotted & put the bow into the off side bank.  Dave then jumped off & collected the wood & dumped it onto the bow. I was holding the boat in forward into the bank.  Lesson one learned:-  the bow sinks further into the mud when held in forward & loaded down.  With the bow now stuck fast, we were completely stuck.  We repositioned the wood near the back, poled, reversed, pushed and rocked, but we were still stuck fast.  After about 30 mins, a boat came past & kindly pulled us off  (thank you 'Good Boy').  Thing is, we weren't as red faced as perhaps we should have been - ha ha - we had our first free fuel and how smug we were.  But we now know why it had been left there - TOO SHALLOW!    Next time it'll be different...........