The flood rain meant we had to stop and enjoy Ranchot for a few days, which wasn’t very tough. Dad particularly loved the little village, ‘it was very pretty.’
Kieran (my nephew) stirred up his creative juices and turned a Lipton’s Yellow Label Tea bag into fishing equipment. Utilising the staple and string Kieran made a hook and line and attempted to capture a whale.
Kieran having a quick snooze
With rested crew we were all ready to tackle the swirling water and we pointed the bows towards Besancon. Gentle locks, eerie tunnels, cups of tea and a pleasantly cool day accompanied the intrepid crew who were ready for anything.
Into the black hole
Noel on the stern line
Mum became navigator and loved the team work of the crew while traversing the canals.
Dad working hard on the bow
In Besancon our lovely friends Linda and Bill met us with healthy grins and a fabulous few days have been spent talking boats, books, writing and wine.
Arriving into Besancon
The grey clouds are now starting their march across the sky. A serious card game is developing, and many satisfied yawns can be heard beneath the pitter-patter of rain.
We’ve ordered a marine toilet from Italy and solar panels from Germany. We’ve got a Dutch bank account and a Dutch built boat. All instructions, on the boat, are in French.
We’re ordering fuses from Holland, ‘they don’t exist anymore,’ insists the French chandlery.
My Dutch phone keeps texting me in Dutch. I can’t get my French phone to work – I have to back up the Sim first, in order to back up the Sim I have to activate the Sim, in order to activate the Sim I have to back up the Sim.
The French dongle (sounds like a poodle) is working just fine – phew!
Thank goodness for lovely places like Ranchot to calm my befuddled brain. And my lovely family from the UK (mum, dad & Kieran (my nephew)) – to help keep me sane!
The town of Dole is remarkable for several reasons. The three most pertinent reasons for me are because:
1) The scientist Louis Pasteur was born here (he was the guy who came up with the food preparing process known as pasteurization, and he also developed a vaccination for anthrax and rabies).
2) It is a stunningly beautiful place, and
3) It is our first stop on our first voyage on our first barge!
My nephew Kieran is great crew
After leaving our health Spar on the hard at St Jean de Losne dry dock, where the fumes supplied a healthy nose bore, emptying out all that crap that’s been sitting there; and where daily skin and teeth exfoliation were complimentary from the neighbouring sandblasting – we finally cast off and moved!
Before departure I confused (and scared) a few people as I decided to inflict a name change on Dole, I told everyone we were going to Dove!
Hidden delights in Dole
Family arrived, mum, dad and nephew Kieran, and they instantly felt at home. They easily fell into the boating way of life and before long we were on another voyage to Ranchot; which was interesting as we did not plan to stop there – until the floods. More on that soon – with some beautiful pictures of a splendid evening on our unplanned visit.