There and Back Again: A Narrowboat Zero Gravity Adventure
Articles, Blog

There and Back Again: A Narrowboat Zero Gravity Adventure

October 14, 2019


(SAXON) – Right, so how are you doing?
(EMMA) – I’ve had butterflies all day but they seem to have subsided. Basically, we’re going on a journey to
get our gas installed and it’s gonna take us about three days to get there –
we’re not quite sure yet. (EMMA) – Of course it’s raining…
(SAXON) – Of course!
(EMMA) – I’ve been really nervous
cuz we haven’t had the engine (EMMA)- we haven’t – we ran the engine a
couple of days ago. . d we haven’t (EMMA)- We haven’t actually been out of here for a couple of years – (SAXON) Three. It’s three years. We’ve checked the fuel and there’s no sign of diesel bug, so fingers crossed… I felt a lot better after checking the
fuel – basically, because this marina is on a river – quite a fast powerful
river – it’s always a bit nerve-wracking going out…
(SAXON) – It’ll be fine! (EMMA) I just don’t want the engine
to stall on the river. (SAXON) – It’ll be fine!
(EMMA) Once we’re through
this stretch I’ll be fine. (SAXON) We’ve only got about two hours to do today so it all should go fairly smoothly. (EMMA): – *quietly* Yeah! Okay, we’re underway and and it feels it
feels nice, but it feels very very odd to actually be be in motion. Have a look at this! (SAXON): How are you doing? I’m nervous. Engine sounds fine, but… you know… Anything could happen! (*laughs*) (SAXON): Confidence! (SAXON): They’re really hassling us now. (EMMA): Oh my God! (SAXON): Whoah! Are they getting violent? I – I think that adult swan is begging! (SAXON): Okay, so how are you feeling about the fact that we just we just moored and like got one bit done? Well, the river was absolutely fine, completely uneventful, lovely. We did the two locks that we needed to to get here. It was five o’clock when we left the first lock – it’s now six forty. (SAXON) Yeah, we had a bit of a nightmare mooring here… (SAXON): It wasn’t nice. I reckon we might have spent forty minutes of that trying to moor up! (*laughs*) (SAXON): It’s all fine! Yeah, I wondered why not
many boats moored down this bit of the stretch, why they’re all further up, and it seems to
be because the bank is full of stones that have sort of tumbled down, and and we kept getting
stuck – and – trying to move it a bit and trying to pull and nothing was happening… (SAXON): No fun. Yeah, but I don’t think we can moor further up because there seems to
be a lot of construction going on up there. Yeah, I don’t want to go
down there and then get stuck and then have to go all the way up and turn around.
(SAXON): Yeah, not doing that. Yeah, so we’ll just cope down here. We’re a little bit away from the bank but not too far. (SAXON): And now we eat! Thank God! I’m *so* hungry! (SAXON) – Okay, this is the point where I actually need to start sounding intelligible. It’s 8 o’clock in the morning. It’s 8 o’clock on Tuesday morning, and – Ooh, and there’s a boat going past! Well, that was unexpected. This is one of the many unexpected things about the boat not being where it normally is,
which is taking some getting used to. Yeah, we’re hoping… I’ve already had a
little bit of breakfast. We’ll be having some scrambled eggs in a minute, We’re hoping to be able to get ready to
go fairly soon – maybe a little after 9:00. Probably a little bit later
than that, depending on how things go but because we’ve got a fair amount to do
today. It actually occurred to me that one detail we haven’t sort of explained yet
is that we’re doing this journey without electricity and we’re also kind of doing
this journey without full-scale plumbing. We do – the sinks are in, so we have a way of getting rid of water but none of the taps actually work yet, so we’re having
to basically just bring all the water with us. We’ll be stopping
off at a marina today so we’ll be refilling a lot of the water bottles
we’ve got and… yeah. It’s a three-day journey – no electricity and no plumbing! Excitement! But yeah – I slept okay last night – I was a bit up and down but
because we’re sleeping on an air bed so that’s fun Looking forward to eggs, and
looking forward to getting moving because today is the day… we need to get
a fair amount done. There’s a distance that we need to cover
today that it would be helpful because we don’t want to run into problems
tomorrow but… Yeah. And I don’t know if you can hear it but in the distance someone
is banging metal which is very nice for just after 8 o’clock. So, yeah – I think eggs, and then we’ll be getting into action fairly soon! (SAXON): So, I guess the important question is…
where are we? Zouch Lock! (SAXON):Why is it called Zouch Lock? I don’t know. There is an Ashby-de-la-Zouch but I
don’t know whether we’re near it. It was very grey when we were on
the Trent but it turned into a lovely sort of late afternoon evening. (SAXON): Yes, look at that sky! Look at that sky. It’s 7 o’clock now, so we’ve moored up, just in time before the Sun sets. We needed to push it as far as we could today because it’s a long journey and the Trent took longer than we hoped it would. It was faster the other way, when were going in the direction of the current! (*laughs*) But, yeah – this is where we hope to get to and we’ve managed to get here so I’m happy with that. (SAXON): Hurrah! It is the morning of Wednesday the 11th of September. Time is getting a
bit difficult to keep track of. We did not have as good a night’s sleep last night as we hoped. Both Emma and I are feeling not
wonderful this morning, it’s probably about
7.40-ish and we’ve got a lot to do today.
I was kind of hoping that Wednesday was gonna just be a be a relatively gentle
day where we would have gone most of the way and we’d only have maybe like three hours of travel to do or something.
We are not in that position because we pretty much have to do the amount of
travel we did yesterday and that was like nine hours so today is gonna be a
bit intense. Basically, ideally speaking, we want to be sort of next to the boatyard where the LPG install is being done tonight, so that the boat
handover can happen tomorrow morning, and there’s just an intimidating amount of distance between where we are now and
where we need to be. And it’s a rather bleak and windy day, just to make life even more exciting. Yeah, we’d forgotten how demanding this can be, especially because we haven’t really had a lot of opportunities to – well – there have been some enjoyable times in
the journey but also there’s very very much the sense of “we need to get here by
this point”, “we need to get here by this point”, and yeah I’m looking forward to
the journey back because we don’t have a time limit so we can basically take it at whatever speed, relatively speaking, we want to – even though we really don’t want to be
spending more nights sleeping on this damn airbed than we have to. So that’s the situation – I’ve no idea if we’ll actually have the opportunity to
film anything else today because it’s gonna be one of those days when the
priority is just getting the amount of travel done that we need to get done, and
everything else is just gonna have to wait. Hopefully I’ll be able to
do an update tonight and hopefully it’ll be like “we had a busy day and it was
intense but we got there in the end”. I guess we’ll see. (SAXON): Well hello! (SAXON): So, it’s it’s
about 11 hours since we set off. (SAXON):How are you feel… (*laughs*) I think we’re both feeling pretty tired! Yeah, we’ve decided we’re gonna try and
do this over three days instead of two on the way back because today
was absolutely exhausting. (SAXON):Yeah, it was too Turns out the River Soar gets
really really twisty after Loughborough, which probably doubled the amount of miles we had to go. It’s just – it’s ridiculous – it’s
just like you know you turn your boat one way and then you have to turn it
another way and then turn it back and they were just parts where we were
worried about getting around, and tree branches in the river… (SAXON) I mean… it was lovely! This is the thing – there was some absolutely
gorgeous scenery that we saw there, but it was also a bit like wandering through
the jungle on a boat and every so often we just had to sort of wonder whether something was just gonna, like, loom out of the undergrowth
at us. It was a difficult day. Yeah, it was lovely and sunny most of the
afternoon. The winds got quite high for a couple of hours which made doing
the River Soar particularly scary, but it’s just so pastoral. (SAXON): Yeah, it was a day with a lot. We went through a lot of
locks, some of which were really quite deep and scary, and mostly
we just we just sort of… I remember this from the boat holiday,
when you’re traveling intensely, it’s like – I don’t want to
travel like this when I’m living on the boat! I’d like to pootle along for a couple of
hours and find the next mooring spot. I’m not gonna do like 12-hour days. And we had a fantastic time at the at the services at Loughborough… (*laughs*) We needed to use the Elsan and
fill up our billion water bottles with some more water, but… there’s
like there’s a code thing on the Elsan and the WC… (SAXON):To briefly explain, with most canal services you have a specific key that you can use that’s
supposed to get you in everywhere if you’re one of the special
people who have the key! We had the key! …And there was a code as well that nobody
told us. (EMMA): Fortunately there was a boater moored nearby and we went and knocked on their door and they actually had the code so that was that
was brilliant, after a scary few minutes trying to figure out what to do – I
guess we would have had to call the Canal and River Trust,
but when when you’re on a bit of a timer – we didn’t
want to be hanging around trying to get numbers and things. And we had a *full* loo.
(SAXON):Yes! It was very full! That was a hairy moment. And
then, the the basin at Loughborough – I was too nervous to try and turn around in it
because it was quite tightly packed with boats, and it’s not very big.
So I ended up having to reverse out and up about, what, fifty yards. (SAXON): It was more than that…
(EMMA):A hundred yards? up to where… there’s like a junction that turns off from where the
basin is, and that was the least fun ever. Just, you know, wandering because you
don’t have steering when you’re going backwards so we were just wandering back
and forth we canal, yes. Going on all the places where you don’t want to take your
boat where there’s all sort of reeds and rubbish… (SAXON): But we made it and
tomorrow morning we hand over the boat (SAXON): and everything will be fine… And then we have to do it all again backwards! (SAXON):Yay! And that is where the record of our journey to Thurmaston ends. Thursday morning was basically a bit tense and fully focused on just getting to the boatyard, so we didn’t really have any time to film.
But everything went fine – we got to the boatyard, we handed the boat over and
then we were able to just go and and rest. The LPG install was being done by
an engineer called Chris Williams and he was brilliant all the way through the
process, very helpful. We’d originally discussed possibly picking the boat up the following day because he’d actually said that the install was probably only
gonna take about two days. So, we thought “Right, we could
pick it up on Friday the 13th and start the journey back!”
We’re so glad we didn’t do that, because we were exhausted. All that intense traveling, combined with
not getting fantastic sleep, meant that we just basically came back and were so happy to say “We’ll pick the boat up on the Monday!” And yeah – so that’s what we did.
We had a weekend where we were able to catch our breath, and then we
were dropped back at Thurmaston on Monday morning. We picked the boat up, had a look at the work that had been done, and were very very happy with it – and
then, it was just a matter of setting off and beginning the journey back to
Nottingham. (SAXON):How are you doing?
(EMMA): I’m doing okay.
I’m very hungry We’ve got to sort of wait until we’ve got a
point where we can stop and eat. (SAXON): Yeah we’ve got lots of locks happening at the moment (EMMA): Yeah, so it’s a bit bit difficult to
prep some food and eat. We probably should have prepped some
food before we set off We’ll get our heads around that as we get a
bit more experienced.
(SAXON:) Yes we will – it’ll all be fine. (SAXON:) Are you happy with the progress so far? (EMMA): Um, yes – it seems to be faster in this direction, or maybe that’s because we’re less stressed or but the river is flowing in this
direction, so it seems to be making a bit of a difference which is good. Also, we’re taking a day longer to come back than we did other way because it was a
little bit too stressful. It was two very long days,
so yeah. Hopefully we’ll be able to moor up by mid afternoon this time.
(SAXON): Where are we aiming for? Well, we’re hoping to stop at Barrow-upon-Soar because we need to use the services there anyway. It did look busy on the way down but as
we’ll be arriving earlier we might be able to get a space. (SAXON): Yeah, we’ll see how it goes. (SAXON): Right – so what have we got here? (SAXON): Oh God. (SAXON): Oh dear.
Oh dear. (SAXON): It’s all fine, it’s all fine.
Not scary in the slightest. (SAXON): Oh my goodness gracious me. (SAXON): Carefully, we let this wind back down.
Brake back on. (SAXON): this is the other thing about these
locks – there is just a ridiculous amount of clambering around in high places… (SAXON:) Okay! (SAXON): There we go! (SAXON): Oh! Careful! (SAXON): Okay, right.
Chuck it, chuck it! (SAXON): Okay. I’ll just bring you in a tiny bit more… (SAXON): One more time… (SAXON:) And I’ve already given you
the windlass, haven’t I? (SAXON): Right, I’ll give a push to the front. (SAXON): Fine, okay! (SAXON): Okay, let me scoot – sorry… thank you! (SAXON): You happy with that? It’s Quarter to 6 and we have moored at
Barrow-Upon-Soar, and it’s so nice – we moored at 4 o’clock and we’ve had
almost two hours of being able to do stuff and it’s still daylight!
We didn’t have this last week. it was quite It was quite intense…
this a nice change, isn’t it? Yes – I think we’re here earlier than 4,
you know. I think we were at the services for like Quarter past Three or something. (SAXON): Oh yeah, it should be said that the services are like about 100 meters in
that direction or so, which is not bad. (EMMA): Yeah, it’s really civilized – we can top up with
water tomorrow before we go anywhere. how (SAXON): How are you feeling about how it’s gone? I was stressed earlier because we’d had a sort of a stressful journey
down. But it’s it’s been nice and tranquil. We’ve moored up, we’ve got everything sorted
while it’s still light, we don’t have to do any cooking or anything now. So we
could actually go for a stroll! Yeah, I guess – I mean we are gonna go for a
stroll in a moment, and one of the nice things about today is –
today has had a lot of what I’m looking forward to about boat life because we’ve kind of had the
opportunity to properly enjoy it. There wasn’t – I mean, God, especially on like the
last main day that we did on the journey down, it was *so* relentless because we
knew that there was a point that we needed to
get to, because we needed to do that handover over in the morning and it was just…
The stuff towards the end of the final big day last week – the stuff that
we did today – is quite tough. There’s like a sort of a two to
three hour stretch where we had four locks, most of which were quite close
together, and honestly – it was quite tiring just doing it this morning when
we were fresh and we hadn’t been boating for two days, so I’m not entirely
sure how we got through that… (EMMA): And then the really really windy bit…
(SAXON): Oh, talk about the windy bit! (EMMA): There’s a really really windy stretch between Barrow and – mainly Montsorrel Lock but… it goes on perhaps down to Cossingtton, the windiness… (SAXON): There’s a lot of very extreme
turns to do there… (EMMA): Yeah, so you’re having to do this with the tiller – behind you, obviously. But when we came down it was really windy when we were doing it so we were sort of getting buffeted all over
while we were doing these bends and we almost crashed into someone.
He came flying around this blind bend… (SAXON):Oh, that guy! I remember that guy! That guy was not stopping! (EMMA): Yeah and he just like put us into a right panic – I had to fling it into reverse because otherwise we would have just gone
straight into the side of him, because he just came past so fast.
(SAXON): But today was much better.
(EMMA): Yes. I mean, I’m not really looking forward to doing Barrow Deep Lock I know it’s very deep It’s a very deep lock, and deep locks scare me.
Looks make me nervous – I’m not used to locks yet.
It will get better. (SAXON):Yeah, but we’re doing okay, and we’re gonna go and have a stroll! Yes! (SAXON): You alright?
(EMMA): “Barrow of Treats” – internet cafe and sweet shop! (SAXON): Oh, fantastic! (SAXON): Before you go in, I just
wanted to ask – does it feel nice to have come back and find the boat
still here? Especially since we used pins? (EMMA): Yes, we used pins, it was a little bit soft, but we’re still here. (SAXON): And it’s been a very nice stroll! (EMMA): Yes, it’s been a much more positive experience today. Yeah, we went and had a little explore of Barrow, and found the Co-op. Barrow is very nice and has lots of really nice restaurants and pubs – nice food in the
Co-op. We’ve just come back and there’s, like, a family of swans being fed just opposite us, and there’s *nine* babies, and then we’ve randomly found a zoo in the next field!
(SAXON): Yes, there seem to be Alpacas somewhere over there! (EMMA): Yes, there are Alpacas, and a Shetland pony, I think. (SAXON): So, not a bad evening overall? (EMMA): Not a bad evening! So, it’s Tuesday morning. We slept…
not bad. It’s still sleeping on an air bed so it’s not never gonna be fantastic. We actually had a relatively late start – we didn’t get going until 10:00 a.m,. and
we’ve done our first lock of the day – it was Barrow Deep Lock and it took an
*eternity* to fill but we got there in the end. And yes, now we are heading towards
Loughborough where we will be stopping off to – we’ll be nipping in the Tesco
there and getting a few provisions for tonight. Today it’s just gonna be trying to get enough distance so that tomorrow isn’t too
stressful a day, because we’re hoping in theory to get to Nottingham at the
end of tomorrow and be able to moor in Nottingham in town, and then return to
our Marina the day after on the Thursday. That is the theory –
we will see how that goes. (SAXON): So how’s it going? (EMMA): Well, it’s a lovely
morning! It’s quite cold – I think I need to get some warmer night clothes. (SAXON): It was quite cold last night wasn’t it? (EMMA): Yes, but it’s nice and sunny, and we got through Barrow Deep Lock with no trouble. It wasn’t as deep as I remembered it, but I think that’s possibly because it fills really really slowly and empties quite quickly.
I think it’s a bit leaky. So that’s out of the way, and there’s no
locks now till after Loughborough. Yep. Having a nice day! (SAXON): So how are you doing? (EMMA): Pretty good! It’s
been a really nice sunny day, much more relaxed, nice scenery. (SAXON:) Yeah, this whole stretch has been really nice. (EMMA): We’re moored up, somewhere – there’s a pub nearby called The Otter, and there’s a
lot of private moorings along that side but this side of the river, it just
it seems to be pilings for miles. (SAXON): Do you want to just explain what pilings are? (EMMA): I think they’re called pilings. I think they’re also called Armco? (SAXON): Yeah, it’s basically metal that’s like attached to the side of the bank. (EMMA): Yeah, it gives you a nice straight bank, and it’s very convenient for mooring up on, much safer than pins. (SAXON): Yes, because we are
using as you can see down here – chains! We moored with pins last night, didn’t we? (EMMA): Yes I did have to check them a couple of times. (*laughs* (SAXON): It was fine! It wasn’t a problem! (SAXON): Are you recovered from the slight
complication we had actually mooring up here? (EMMA):I actually wasn’t that stressed about it – we were just sort of scraping on rocks, and but we’ve managed to find
a patch just a few yards further down that seems to be fine. (SAXON): It was just briefly scary because we were just like coming in, and I was ready to jump
off and then suddenly there were these *huge* rocks just under the water, and I was like, “Oh crap, it’s really shallow!” (EMMA): No, it’s good and I’m feeling a lot better today, because I was poorly on the way down which made things much
worse. And I hurt my hip – I don’t know how I hurt my hip. I
don’t know whether it was I was just standing in the same position for too long on the back of the boat, or whether I’d like, you know,
fended off at a lock or something, but yeah, I was limping for a few days but
I’m doing much better so this has been a lot more
enjoyable. And yes, I’m looking forward to having some tea and just
relaxing for the rest of the evening. (SAXON): This sounds very good. Shall we go have our food? (EMMA): Yes! (SAXON): Excellent! (SAXON) It’s Wednesday the 18th,
and it’s just before 8:00 in the morning and it is a very very lovely, very crisp,
very misty morning. Had to get out here because
we were just like looking at the window and going “Oh my god, it’s so misty and
gorgeous out here.” Cold night. Yeah, that was – I think it got down to about six degrees and – having no heating on top of everything else does obviously
mean that if you have a six degree night it gets pretty cold about
4 or 5 a.m. Yeah, we’re gonna be exploring different ways of coping with
that because obviously, I mean, we will have a heating system fairly
soon but it’s gonna be the stove and we’re not gonna be able to do
the stove at all times of the year when it’s a little bit cold, so we’ll figure out things but… Oh God, this is lovely, this really is. It’s just… This is the kind of stuff that we
dreamed about. This is just like… the kind of concept that sort of been
keeping us going through doing this. Just the idea of being able to
like moor up somewhere lovely and in the middle of nowhere… Yeah, it’s really really quiet. We seem to be on a track between between two villages, and
there are occasional runners but very very occasional. I think we saw
about five people go past last night. Yeah, dead quiet. Can’t see
anyone at the moment, and yeah, hopefully we’ll be getting going in the next half
hour. We’ve got a fair amount to do today – we want to try and get to Nottingham tonight. We’re going to be mooring in town and then we’ll be returning to the marina tomorrow. And fingers crossed,
it should work because we’ll be leaving the Soar, the wonderful windingness of the
River Soar is going to be behind us from about late morning onwards and then we’ll be
back on the Trent and yeah. Today should go pretty well, and it’s certainly off to a very lovely start. (SAXON): Good morning Emma! Good morning! (SAXON): Do you want to say something about how lovely it is this morning?
(EMMA): (*laughs*) Look at how lovely it is! (*laughs*) (SAXON): (*sings*): Aaaaaahhhhh! (EMMA): (*laughs*) Thank you!
(SAXON): That’s alright! (EMMA): Yeah, it’s really beautiful. There was loads more mist when we woke up as well, but just… I can’t even see in this direction, it’s just a solid wall of mist and sunlight! (*laughs*) Oh, let me show you something I did wrong last night. This goes to show that you know, we haven’t actually done anything on a boat for, like, three years. You don’t do mooring chains like that. You
put that one through that one, and tie your rope to the little one, so it makes a knot. (SAXON): Right. Well, you know – A, it’s been three and a half years, and B it worked, so I (SAXON): I mean, we won’t do it like that again but… (EMMA): Maybe there isn’t a right way, I don’t know. (SAXON): Oh no no, you realize
that’s a very dangerous thing to say, because then immediately people will
go “Of course there’s a right way!” (EMMA): But then people might argue about whether there’s a right way or not a right way. (SAXON): Ah! Controversy! I like it! (SAXON): How are you feeling about about today, and getting going? (EMMA): Not bad. We’re going to have a nice drive down past the Otter Pub, all the moorings down there, but then we’ve
got a really deep lock and I’m not looking forward to that. But we haven’t
got many locks today, we’re going to through like three flood locks… (SAXON): Yeah, which is a relief after the last couple of days because they’ve been very lock heavy. (SAXON): So – feeling good? (EMMA): Yeah. Very sleepy! (*laughs*). Don’t really want to accelerate too much on this
because this is a sharp turn… Oh look, there’s the Little Ship restoration. (SAXON): Okay…. so how are we feeling about…. what just happened… (SAXON): Or at least, about our arrival
back in the wonderful city of Nottingham (EMMA): It’s been it’s been quite a
long day but we managed to get to Nottingham, and we’ve moored up near Castle
Marina in the city centre. It was slightly traumatic mooring up – not as dramatic as the *first* time we moored up here, on the way… (SAXON): No, exactly! We’re grading on a curve here, okay? (EMMA): On the way, we kept
trying to moor up where there were rocks and like fighting the boat and… (SAXON): We just mildly brushed a tree. (EMMA): Yes, yes… I’ve got to get better at mooring because I have a tendency to slightly overcook the turn, and the front end went
out way too far this time, and sort of like hit a tree on the opposite side… (SAXON): Only lightly!
(EMMA): So we had a bit of a fight with the tree. And it’s very embarrassing when you’re surrounded by other boaters. (SAXON): But it was okay – I got off the boat – got the rope – brought you in… (EMMA): We’ll get better at it.
(SAXON): Yes, but other than that,
it’s gone okay, hasn’t it? (EMMA): Yes, yes. I’m very tired it’s been a very long day. And two river locks –
one of them was deep, but I’m getting better at not being scared of locks. I was scared of a lot of things
when when we first started boating. I was scared of mooring up – I *should* be
scared of mooring up again after that! (*laughs*) I was scared of steering, I was scared
of going past boats, but you know, that’s that’s all long gone. Yes, we’ve successfully navigated many
boats today without actually bumping into any. (SAXON): Yes – no bumps! No bumps.
(EMMA): We haven’t grounded ourselves either, so we’re doing okay.
(SAXON): We are! And what is the plan now? I think – get cleaned up, get changed
go to Sainsbury’s, and then maybe go into town for some food! (SAXON): Because frankly I feel like we deserve it!
(EMMA): Yeah, I think we deserve it. (SAXON): We have arrived, back where we started… (EMMA): I feel a bit sunburnt… (SAXON): I’ve asked “how do you feel” a lot at this point, but I guess, especially after that
mooring… how do you feel? Oh after this morning? Much better.
I finally got some karma in my direction. (SAXON): Don’t beat yourself up about it,
you’ve been doing really well. I repeatedly overcooked it on the way here
but then when we got here… (SAXON): The angle, you should probably clarify… Yeah well – it’s because I can’t
see the front of the boat and I haven’t quite got in my brain exactly where it
is, so I tend to sort of turn too soon, when the front is still a
little bit too far out, which means by the time my back is in, then my front has come around too far and I haven’t quite got the whole slowing down and getting back in thing. (SAXON): You’re doing well! But this actually went okay,
and fortunately our friend who lives in the boat opposite was on the
pontoon and was able to give us a hand when the front came in so it all went beautifully. (SAXON): Which did help, but I think even
if Kate hadn’t been there, I think you’d have been fine.
But then, I am biased. (EMMA): Yes, and it’s a nice day and it’s over.
I can relax now. Yes, I’m really tired, and I’m gonna sleep for two days! (*laughs*) (SAXON): Good plan! Good plan. (SAXON): Hello!
(EMMA:) Hello! (SAXON): It’s two weeks later.
(EMMA): Something like that… (SAXON): How do feel about the trip? I really enjoyed it.
Apart from all the anxiety! (*laughs*) (SAXON): Apart from all the stress! I think by the final day I was pretty happy with the whole thing and not that worried about locks
or anything else. We got back and immediately I was like, “I want to be back on the boat! I really miss the boat!” (*laughs*) “Can’t wait to be on the boat!” The really nice thing about the trip for me was the fact that – we’ve had a rough year. The problems
that we’ve like talked about before – they haven’t really gone away, so 2019
has not been easy. We didn’t actually have to do the trip, as well. Just in terms of the way that we arranged the LPG – I mean it would have been possible
for us to find someone who could have actually like come and and done the job
here. Chris Williams, the guy we got to do it, he wasn’t set up for mobile travel
and he sort of said “Well, look, I could do it but you’d need to actually bring the
boat to Thurmaston,” and we heard that and went, “Oooh”… because that actually gave us a reason to go, and honestly I am so glad we did. Because we could have got a guy in to do the work and not gone anywhere, but this has been such a confidence boost. It’s been reassuring as well because you know – doing something like this for so long it’s easy to slightly doubt if you’re
doing the right thing. We’ve done *very* little narrowboating and we’ve spent three and a half years of our life trying to do this, and honestly – particularly on the second half – on the journey back, when we have the chance to enjoy it – It was wonderful. And I’m glad that we’ve got that now because I feel like that’s gonna like carry us
through the stuff that we have to do now and – yeah. Whatever we need to sort of
deal with from here onwards, we’re going to have the memory of the
trip to keep us going and remind us of what we’re aiming for.

79 Comments

  • Reply Narrowboat Zero Gravity October 7, 2019 at 4:09 pm

    Hi there! Just wanted to say a quick thank you to everyone who's subscribed in the last few months when we haven't been active – 2019 has not been an easy year, and I hope this super-sized edition makes up a little for all the months of quiet.

  • Reply Mike Tipping October 7, 2019 at 4:20 pm

    Whohoo. I have just been rewatching all your old videos and just as I ran out… BLAM! Exceptional timing! Glad to see your still alive.

  • Reply bren106 October 7, 2019 at 4:38 pm

    It's somewhat disconcerting to see how similar Emma and Victoria Coren Mitchell look. Or do I need to go to Specsavers?

  • Reply charles curtius October 7, 2019 at 4:39 pm

    good to see you back ๐Ÿ™‚

  • Reply Diane Smith October 7, 2019 at 4:49 pm

    So nice to see you both back, hope things go really well. Regards Alan

  • Reply Peter Mastenbroek October 7, 2019 at 4:51 pm

    Hi Emma and Saxon, good to see that you haven't given up, as I was wondering for quite some time what had happened to "Zero Gravity", happy to see that there is some progress, gaz on board is a big step to more comfort, now getting on with the electrics to get some lights and pumps working, and a good real matress and you'll be happy living on board. ATBn Peter.

  • Reply James Jetty October 7, 2019 at 4:54 pm

    Congrats on the forward movement. The final stage is hardest keep plugging along. And it will get easier with practice

  • Reply Ted G October 7, 2019 at 4:55 pm

    Well, I know what I will be watching after work tonight.

  • Reply Lloyd Lawrance October 7, 2019 at 4:58 pm

    Hi
    Nice to see you back and to see Zero Gravity is nearing completion.
    Just a little bit of advise, if you only open one gate on wide locks you will save yourself so much time and effort.
    Best regards
    Lloyd & Gill

  • Reply zen Maverick October 7, 2019 at 5:04 pm

    glad to see you are both ok and moving forward

  • Reply Dave Allen October 7, 2019 at 5:07 pm

    It's really good to see you back at the helm, cheers! Emma, looking lovely, and as sweet as ever. Saxon, well Saxon.. ๐Ÿ™‚ Glad you both are doing well.

  • Reply Tim R October 7, 2019 at 5:45 pm

    Glad to see you out boating again and making progress on the build. You cracked me up walking over the lock gate. I would be the same just much worse.

  • Reply Rosalind Goulden October 7, 2019 at 5:50 pm

    It's good to see you both back .

  • Reply Joe Shepley October 7, 2019 at 5:52 pm

    Great to see you posting a video. Hope to see another soon.

  • Reply Border Reiver October 7, 2019 at 6:13 pm

    a rare event to see you both…how is the build going..how much progress have you made…Emma is looking well…look forward to more adventures..

  • Reply kevin lloyd October 7, 2019 at 6:18 pm

    Great vlog again guys. Well done on the journey. Whatโ€™s your views on Colwick Marina after being there a while now. Iโ€™m looking for a marina quite local when Iโ€™ve found a boat. Iโ€™m at Mansfield so colwick looks like itโ€™s one of the nearest to me

  • Reply Minimal List October 7, 2019 at 6:25 pm

    So happy to see this video in my sub box! So lovely to see you on the move!

  • Reply Martin Brewin October 7, 2019 at 6:32 pm

    Nice to see you getting the boat out and enjoying it. Martin (Lazy Days, Colwick Marina)

  • Reply Dale Jones October 7, 2019 at 6:33 pm

    It is really great to see you both once again! Welcome back!

  • Reply Richard Howe October 7, 2019 at 6:35 pm

    Good to see you back and a great video ๐Ÿ‘

  • Reply Gary Arnold October 7, 2019 at 6:36 pm

    Good to see you actually on a boat moving lol

  • Reply Geoff Upton October 7, 2019 at 6:48 pm

    wew! thought you'd both gone off never to return! ๐Ÿ˜ณ๐Ÿ˜ฑ thank god your both ok!!

    great bit of navigating there! remember, focus at the center of the boat not the front… its weird but it works! you did well ๐Ÿ˜Š

    hope you can get the boat fully useable soon so you can enjoy yourselves fully ๐Ÿ˜Š

    cant wait for the next vid! and i hope the problems finally go away and leave you both to have fun! ๐Ÿ˜Š

  • Reply Cadence Chrome October 7, 2019 at 7:00 pm

    Great to catch a glimpse of the two of you, both look well. You'll get your sea legs before you know it! Excitement mixed with fear, and you survived! Good days ahead. Take care.

  • Reply Hans de Ruiter October 7, 2019 at 7:04 pm

    Hi there, it nice to see you guys back ๐Ÿ˜‰

  • Reply Andrew Riley October 7, 2019 at 7:05 pm

    Yay! Your back after what seems ages…oh it is๐Ÿ˜‚

  • Reply Andy October 7, 2019 at 7:38 pm

    Ahoy… Is it really three years since you started this project.. Time flies … So in another three years you may just be aboard living the dream … Maybe ๐Ÿค”

  • Reply roadkingreggae October 7, 2019 at 7:48 pm

    Welcome back guys.

  • Reply Penfold Smith October 7, 2019 at 8:06 pm

    Cripes! almost fell off my chair and spilt my tes when I saw a NZG video in my subs.
    Straight into it and was not dissapointed. Great to see the smiles and laughs are back.
    Stress? Well yes, I guess it is but, its another job ticked off the long list.
    Great to see you back on YT. Look forward to perhaps a few more vlogs before the year ends.
    Keep at it guys, keep at it.

  • Reply Robin Hall October 7, 2019 at 8:13 pm

    Good to see you back!

  • Reply Peter Sheil October 7, 2019 at 8:24 pm

    One tip: whilst all the clambering over the gates makes for great video, usually a single boat can get through a double lock with only opening one of the gates ๐Ÿ™‚

  • Reply Roar Handberg October 7, 2019 at 8:30 pm

    That music sure gets abit annoying and loud

  • Reply Tom Wellige October 7, 2019 at 8:31 pm

    So glad to see you back! After your really energetic start into your new live project things slowed down (for tons of reasons) and the channel became quite quiet. Live always finds a way to get into your way, but its really good to see you going on and continue to get your dream done! Looking forward to lots of more videos from you two ๐Ÿ™‚ Greetings from Germany, Tom.

  • Reply Grim Reboot October 7, 2019 at 8:34 pm

    We love you guys! :), glad to see you back, hope to see you round the marina some time, we are moored a few boats over :p

  • Reply Bonniebritches October 7, 2019 at 8:56 pm

    What a lovely surprise ๐Ÿ˜ so pleased you enjoyed your journey. Looking forward to the next vlog

  • Reply Kathleen Lench October 7, 2019 at 9:06 pm

    Good to see you again I thought we had lost you

  • Reply Matt Allen October 7, 2019 at 9:42 pm

    You know I was starting to think I'd accidentally unsubbed from NZG … so glad you found the time folks that was 46 minutes of my day well spent. Hopefully see you both again soon :o)

  • Reply Never-2- Late October 7, 2019 at 11:35 pm

    Itโ€™s so great to see you back , you are a fun couple to watch and missed your progress on your boat and your journey through life. Bless you and wish you the best

  • Reply SnowbirdCruisers October 8, 2019 at 12:35 am

    Great to see you back. Looking forward to future vlogs.

  • Reply Arthur Roy October 8, 2019 at 12:46 am

    Welcome back!

  • Reply Hal Lowther October 8, 2019 at 1:29 am

    I thought about you both a couple nights ago and hoped all was well. Low and behold, you just posted today. Saxon, it looks like you and Emma have made great progress with the boat. Maybe not as much as you wanted but it is coming. You both look well and Emma is healthy which is most important. As you said at one of the last moorings, " This is how I had imagined it. Just cruising. " ( maybe I took liberties with your words ) That day is coming. Hope and look forward to hearing more. All the best, Hal

  • Reply Gary Captain Phillips October 8, 2019 at 5:19 am

    Great to see you back guys, God speed x
    Gary, Sandy, Chip & Dale.
    Nb Chugabug

  • Reply DreamJourney October 8, 2019 at 6:42 am

    Yeah. Youโ€™re back. ๐Ÿ‘๐Ÿปโค๏ธ๐Ÿ‘๐Ÿปโค๏ธ๐Ÿ‘๐Ÿปโค๏ธ๐Ÿ‘๐Ÿปโค๏ธ๐Ÿ‘๐Ÿปโค๏ธ๐Ÿ‘๐Ÿปโค๏ธ๐Ÿ‘๐Ÿปโค๏ธ๐Ÿ‘๐Ÿป

  • Reply The Buffmeister October 8, 2019 at 6:49 am

    Fabulous – glad youโ€™re getting there

  • Reply Randall Field October 8, 2019 at 6:58 am

    Great to see both your smiling faces again and cruising as well. Looking forward to the next update. Thanks guys.

  • Reply ansonpotter October 8, 2019 at 7:26 am

    Throughly enjoyed this, thank you.

  • Reply Stacieod Stacieod October 8, 2019 at 7:28 am

    Looking to see you soon!!

  • Reply ann mcwilliams October 8, 2019 at 8:14 am

    Good to have you back enjoyed the video. I know itโ€™s a pain but more videos of the referb would be great.

  • Reply Garry Stacey October 8, 2019 at 8:34 am

    Hi both great to see you are still working on the boat good luck with the fit out and keep the video rolling ๐Ÿ‘๐Ÿป

  • Reply Ian Clements October 8, 2019 at 12:46 pm

    Hi from the colonies, Good to see you back thought you had gone down the dreaded canal plug hole.looking forward to more adventures.

  • Reply Erik Johansson October 8, 2019 at 1:06 pm

    How the hell can all that be stressful?
    Water calm and like a mirror. No traffic jams or commute to office / work. No management nagging about dead lines and budgets. No need to wake up at 0530hrs.

    All that I watch is easy lazy life, a permanent vacation.

  • Reply John Mason October 8, 2019 at 1:40 pm

    Thankyou for this video,and thanks for being such cheering people.Much love from Denmark ๐Ÿ€๐Ÿ€๐Ÿ’š๐Ÿ’š๐Ÿ‡ฉ๐Ÿ‡ฐ๐Ÿ‡ฉ๐Ÿ‡ฐ๐Ÿ‡ฌ๐Ÿ‡ง๐Ÿ‡ฌ๐Ÿ‡ง

  • Reply jared legg October 8, 2019 at 2:55 pm

    Interesting journey and video guys but from your comments Iโ€™m not sure the narrow boat life is for you haha

  • Reply Harry Limes October 8, 2019 at 3:56 pm

    Yay, you're back! I thought you had given up and sold your boat in Exasperation. I wonder if you shouldn't of got a 2nd hand boat instead of doing all this work. I first watched your videos years ago, hats of for the determination to make your dream come true.

  • Reply Ian Harriman October 8, 2019 at 4:22 pm

    Great to see you back and cruising as well. Couple of more trips and everything will fall into place. We still make mistakes as everyone does, just donโ€™t worry about it. Good luck guys.

  • Reply Narrowboat Longpod October 8, 2019 at 6:56 pm

    Great to see you back on YouTube and doing what narrowboats were designed to do. Until recently, we were based a Pillingโ€™s Lock so we know the Soar quite well. Weโ€™ve often moored by The Otter, with its shallow bank, but there is no easy way to walk to the pub. I think the village/lock at Zouch is pronounced โ€œzotchโ€ like โ€œwatchโ€ and not the french way as in Ashby-de-la-Zouchโ€. Hope to see you again, soon. All the best.

  • Reply MisterG October 8, 2019 at 7:20 pm

    Great to see you both out and about. I think everyone with a boat has had that dread of close-quarters manoeuvring, and has beaten themselves up about a bad approach (especially in front of an audience!). It's mostly about practice – the more you do, the better you get. Hopefully you get some mojo back and your luck turns a bit. You both deserve it.

  • Reply floating steel October 8, 2019 at 9:09 pm

    well done

  • Reply vamp234201 October 9, 2019 at 2:40 am

    This really made my day….. Thx guys……good luck…..

  • Reply Adrian.J October 9, 2019 at 3:39 am

    Thank you for your vlogs, you must have been cold, never mind when you have your fire and the gas cooker on while cooking you will be roasty toasty ๐Ÿ™‚

  • Reply Eileen Maschal October 9, 2019 at 6:22 am

    So glad you are back. I hope you haven't lost your enthusiasm for your narrow boat life. Best of luck with the finishing touches of ZG and get a better mattress….hope to see you both again soon!

  • Reply Robert Callander October 9, 2019 at 6:35 am

    Great to see you guys again keep in their it will all be worth it

  • Reply Allan October 9, 2019 at 10:56 am

    Nice to see you back allan and Christine stoke on Trent

  • Reply Philip Doyle-allen October 9, 2019 at 11:22 am

    Hi just found your blog . Weโ€™re waiting for our first narrow boat to be built which should be jan or feb time , My wife and I have sold our house and are living in our caravan at the moment . Excited and scary times a head for us ๐Ÿ˜ฑ๐Ÿ˜‚

  • Reply Matt Stubbington October 9, 2019 at 5:07 pm

    Fantastic to see you both are back and well, also fantastic to see you on the move!!

  • Reply Leonard Smith October 9, 2019 at 6:34 pm

    To aid your understanding of why the lock is called Zouch Lock, try this link https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Zouch

  • Reply gillywild October 9, 2019 at 7:23 pm

    Hi guys, lovely to see you're back ๐Ÿ™‚ quick question, what colour is that blue paint on the back of your boat please? Thank you ๐Ÿ™‚

  • Reply ramsey barber October 9, 2019 at 7:36 pm

    Hi Welcome Back , Just some thing that I noticed that could cause you a problem 1 Your centre line is too long it should not reach beyond the cabin doors as if it fell into the oggin the Propeller is waiting to grab to grab it and wrap it around itself into a god allmighty Knot. Cheers.

  • Reply Escape Man October 9, 2019 at 8:10 pm

    You need some fenders! Also, you will soon be able to only use one gate at the locks. Saves a lot of walking! Nice to see you back again.

  • Reply srq lisa October 10, 2019 at 7:58 am

    Don't worry about what has not happened yet because you can't do anything about it. You have a stove so you have heat, put some wood in it. : ) peace

  • Reply ShanghaiGoat October 10, 2019 at 2:10 pm

    AND!

  • Reply Peter Simonson October 10, 2019 at 10:12 pm

    Why do you think you need to open both gates on that wide lock?

  • Reply C M October 11, 2019 at 11:21 am

    So glad to see you back and hear that your still moving toward more boating! Yes, life happens and often takes us in directions we don't expect, but your still here. I'm prepping to move from New Jersey to Florida, had to sell my boat, so I'm in the thick of it! Hope to hear more from y'all, but if nothing else, stay safe and let us know your OK.

  • Reply Russ Ozard October 11, 2019 at 3:59 pm

    Great blog Good to see things are moving in the right direction for you guys ๐Ÿ˜Š

  • Reply Citrisity October 11, 2019 at 4:32 pm

    OMG! it is so nice to see you and your lovely wife back again, I have been so worried about you both wondering what could have happened to you. I am so sorry to hear that you have had such a bad year , perhaps you can now put that all behind you and carry on. Wishing you both all the very best and looking forward to more vlogs X

  • Reply Sean Grant October 11, 2019 at 8:02 pm

    Hi, SO good see you guys back, keep up the fantastic vlogs !, you really are a breath of fresh air, regards SEAN .

  • Reply Joye Yoder October 12, 2019 at 6:06 pm

    Great to see you guys on the water. Looking forward to it being a permanent thing.

  • Reply Paul .Austin October 12, 2019 at 7:09 pm

    Good job guys, keep going.

  • Reply The Blundering Galoot October 12, 2019 at 7:57 pm

    Wow.. 4K plus views after being away so long…nice one ! Lovely to see you both

  • Reply Dave Robinson October 12, 2019 at 10:59 pm

    So great to see you both back,missed your quirkinesses,have followed your journey from the beginning,life throws many trials up,always think positive we can achieve anything we want to,believe in your journey ๐Ÿ‡ฌ๐Ÿ‡ง๐Ÿด๓ ง๓ ข๓ ฅ๓ ฎ๓ ง๓ ฟ๐Ÿ‘๐Ÿป๐Ÿ˜…forever following Dave&Faye ,weโ€™re aiming for that same narrow boat dream too… all the best emma&saxon

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