Blacking up (Part 1)

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Last night I got a call out of the blue from Jon Ody asking if I wanted my boat Dawn’s hull blacking. It’s something that needs to be done every couple of years and I was starting to think about it anyway. The catch: it had to be done tomorrow morning and he needed a decision promptly, as he had a free slot in the boatyard. It didn’t help that it would make me homeless for the weekend. After some umming and aahing I said yes.

I arose early and drove round. I don’t know what you did before work on Friday, but I drove for an hour, went through Iffley lock on my own (a very profound experience actually, just me and my boat), steered onto a boat hoist, had my hand down the weed hatch untangling the prop, rose out of the water aboard a boat, and admired my home from the underneath. All before the first coffee of the morning.

It’s quite an experience being lifted out of the water aboard a boat. More unnerving than I thought standing on the deck and things not moving around. Boats aren’t meant to stay still. Not to mention climbing down a ladder to get off.

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