This coming week, life will change. I'm not sure yet how it's going to feel, but at the very least it will be strange for a while. Mo and Craig have been here for some months now (as you know) and have found that getting a home of their own is more difficult than they'd bargained for. They've been staying on the Luxor since they arrived and combining that with eating with us. But now we feel it's time Koos got his boat back, and as none of my efforts to help them buy a small flat, or even rent a place, have been successful, we are now doing a swap.
As of this coming Thursday, I am moving off the Vereeniging to let them have it for themselves for a couple of years. Yes, I know. Big move for me. But, I've done it before. About three years ago, Jodie lived on the Vereeniging for nearly a year too, and in that time, I spent the week on the Luxor and went to Brussels at the weekends (remember the Tenacité?). Well, Brussels was a phase that passed and now I have the cottage in Zeeuws Vlaanderen, which is where I am writing this. It is gradually becoming a home from home, and this weekend, we came down loaded with books and pictures and the stuff that has previously made my little barge so cosy.
One of the reasons for working so hard on both boats recently has been with this change in sight, and there are still jobs that I need to do on the Vereeniging, which will happen after they've moved in. They've planned some adjustments inside, notably to the colour scheme and arrangement of the interior, and they also plan to turn the storage space below the foredeck into a spare bedroom - a job I will help with. So I'll still be involved - for a while anyway. I have a feeling that after a year or so, they may well feel it's too small, but at least this will give them some time to sort out their finances, gain some credit history and get on their feet.
As for me, I shall focus some further TLC on the Luxor, and then of course, we have our escape as well......
Some random pics here. The first is of one of my favourite barges in the harbour, owned by friend Bas, who single handedly uses this beautiful Hasselteaark as his home, his transport and his workplace. He has no car, so whenever he has to go some distance for his work as a professional electrical engineer, he just takes his home and workshop with him.
This second is one I rather like as it's vaguely surreal. The child stopped in this street in perfect position against the looming presence of the bridge keeper's tower just behind the houses.
And this third is for me so special. To see Sin enjoying a really good roll, even these days when she's often very stiff, is great. I can almost feel her satisfaction. I wish I could do that too sometimes!