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Tuesday, April 18, 2006

We own a boat!

The purchase of Ty Dewi went through last week, and I took a crew down to Dartmouth on Thursday and spent the Easter weekend bringing her back to Ipswich by way of Brighton. We got back in the early hours of Monday morning, and she is now happily moored at the marina in Woolverstone. Full story of the delivery trip to follow soon. Posted by Picasa

Saturday, April 08, 2006

Trains! (part 3 and final)

Down at the platform, 'City of Peterborough' was waiting to take us home, so we hustled over the footbridge and onto the train. This station is the last on the line, but the line itself goes on for another half mile, through a good long tunnel and to the end, where there is a passing loop and the engine switches to the other end to pull us home. This gives good opportunities for poking our heads out of the window and watching the engine come by in clouds of steam. Max enjoys this a lot.
For the journey home, we have our own compartment. Very upmarket, with even more bouncy seats thean before. In the tunnels, the lights come on and it feels very 1950's (even though I wasn't born in the 50's...)

Back in Peterborough, we catch a bus, to add to our ticked boxes of 'types of transport used today', and head back to the regular railway for an uneventful trip back to Ely. Once there, Max still throws a tantrum of epic proportions at the prospect of leaving the train station, despite having spent the whole day around trains of various sorts. Grateful little chap, isn't he. After ten minutes of noisy protest in the car, he falls fast asleep and is transferred straight into bed once we get home. I think (hope) we'll all sleep pretty well tonight. Posted by Picasa

Trains (Part 2)

Issie took this photo of Max and I. The carriages were the old BR types with extra bouncy seats which were a lot of fun for our budding trampolinists.

At the other end of the line, a surprise was waiting. Wansford is, apparently, the home of Thomas the Tank Engine (and you thought it was the island of Sodor, didn't you? No? You don't watch enough kids TV then)

Thomas comes out for specials every now and again, but the next one is already booked up, so if you wanted to spend an hour in a train packed full of over excited five year olds in full Thomas paraphenalia, you've missed your chance. As you can tell, I'm gutted.

The train yard was a lot of fun, balancing on the rails, jumping from sleeper to sleeper, running up and down going 'whoo whoo, chu-chuff-chuff-chuff' and so on. Issie and Max enjoyed it too. In fact, when we moved on to the proper kids playground, they only stayed a few minutes and wanted to come back here.

One of the attractions is an old coach turned into a model railway exhibition. The kids were glued to this one for quite a while, watching the trains going up and down. Perhaps I should dig the old train set ut of the attic after all, although some of the characters operating and building the layout reminded me of why you're more likely to find me out sailing..... Posted by Picasa

Trains! (part 1)

Anyone who know Max knows that he is obsessed with anything mechanical. Cars, trains, planes, anything. On Thursday, we dropped a friend off at the rail station and he cried all the way home and half the evening because we didn't go on a train ourselves. So today we set off on an adventure. Max was raring to go but Issie didn't seem too awake.....

We drove up to Ely then took the little diesel chugger to Peterborough. This was greated with interest, although Max decided that it was a bit noisy on the platform. In Peterborough, it was a short but interesting walk away from the station (which totally hacked off Max - he was there to see trains, after all) but towards the Nene Valley railway. Both kids took a lot of convincing that another station was just around the corner, but we got there in the end.

Midday came, and so did our train. Two hungry children dragged Daddy onto the train - I wanted to show them the engine (a 'Black 5' if you're interested) but Issie was paranoid that we'd miss the train, so we had to get on RIGHT NOW. We soon set off, and Max decided that the noise and steam were now exciting instead of scary. Good oh. A few well timed snacks clamed everyone down too.

So along we went, the 25 minute journey along the Nene Valley is quite pretty once you get beyond the Peterborough suburbs, and there are a few stops along the way where you have to convince Issie that it's not time to get off yet.

More in Part 2.... (blogger appears to limit the number of photos in each post) Posted by Picasa


The weather has started to turn warmer, so we played in the garden after nursery. It wasn't that warm, but when I turned around, Max and Issie had got all their plates out, and any food they could reach (juice, skim milk powder, packet of almonds, 2 litres milk) and decided to have a picnic. I humoured them for a while before pleading cold and dragging them in for a bath. Posted by Picasa

Friday, April 07, 2006

Ty Dewi sailing off St Maarten in the Caribbean.

We'll be doing this someday before too long! This is a picture from the sales info, the boat was in the Caribbean until April 05, when her current owner bought her over to England.

Chart table

This is the chart table, more like a small office. The big box in front is the old radar - it works fine but we'll probably update to a smaller, flat screen set which will regain the space. Posted by Picasa

The galley

In need of a tidy up! This space has lots of lockers and a really warm, cosy feel. The whole boat is filled with beautiful woodwork in oiled teak, with storage everywhere. Posted by Picasa

Our new boat - Ty Dewi.

On Tuesday, I drove down to Dartmouth to see our new boat being surveyed. This is the last stage in the buying process, hopefully she'll belong to us early next week. She's a Westwind 43, but actually almost 50 feet long from stem to stern. The name is Welsh, meaning 'House of David', and since David is my dad's name, we'll probably not change it!. Here she is lifted out of the water to check the hull Posted by Picasa

From astern

the view from astern, being lifted back in. The boat has a large platform at the back, which is great for sitting on, and getting access to the dinghy and swim ladder. The gantry also holds solar panels and a wind generator. Posted by Picasa

Sunday afternoon, Nana and Grandpa arrive.

this is an eagerly awaited event, and the kids watch out the window. My parents have, very graciously, volunteered to come over and look after the kids whilst I head off around the country to see the boat and then into London for work on Wednesday. Posted by Picasa

and an evening rainstorm provides a beautiful rainbow. Posted by Picasa

Sunday morning, ready to go over to Sam's for breakfast Posted by Picasa

With the roof on.... Posted by Picasa

We're building a playhouse in the back garden, and both the kids helped with putting the screws in to hold it up. Posted by Picasa

Max and Issie try to sink the old model boat with a combination of large rocks and frogspawn (!?) Posted by Picasa

Saturday morning now, and still dancing.... Posted by Picasa

Back at home, Issies still dancing. Posted by Picasa

The kids were instantly drawn to the sunday school area, where they sat and played for 20 mins whilst I looked around Posted by Picasa

We went over to Gt Chesterton, in Essex, for a walk in the sunshine. We came to the church, so went in for a look around. Posted by Picasa

Gesa's away in Canada, so I'm in charge! Each morning I'm instructed to dress the kids and take a photo so Mummy can criticise my sartorial choices when she returns. Friday, and the team just wanna dance. Posted by Picasa