Friday, 8 July 2011

Any Questions?

Life Afloat on Lucky Duck has been growing. It's been really exciting to see lots of new visitors from all over the world join those of you who have been reading for a while now. So a big hello and welcome to everyone who's started following recently from my guest post at Danielle's lovely blog, Sometimes Sweet, and from The Quiet Life of Violet.

In light of the fact that lots of our new readers are not necessarily boaters, I've decided to start a regular(ish!) feature called 'Any Questions?'. Some of you might have noticed the link in the side bar and the blog signature to our formspring account, and we've already had a few questions about living afloat asked there. So, if there's anything you're curious about then please get in touch, by email, facebook, twitter, or formspring! I'm really excited about starting this, and so without further ado, here's the first question and answer:

How did you feel confident enough to take that initial plunge into a new life? Had you had lots of boating experience beforehand? Or had it always been a dream, and you just instinctively knew it would suit you?

The over-riding reason that we felt confident was that we had spent time on our friends' live-aboard narrowboat Kestrel. James in particular had spent a lot of time helping them move their boat, going to the waterpoint with them, learning how to moor up and steer. It also showed us that life on a boat can be great fun, but also perfectly normal - there are no huge sacrifices to be made unless that's the lifestyle you're after. But the confidence also came from having done the research. Both of us are the kind of people who when they get an idea, have to do everything possible to follow it through. So once the idea was planted, we just researched and talked and read and visited and thought and somehow made it happen despite setbacks and financial stress and people telling us we were mad.

As for boating experience, I had spent time in sailing dinghies as a kid, and James had his experiences on Kestrel. However, it had certainly not always been our dream. Although James had wanted to live afloat for a couple of years, ever since he'd spent time on Kestrel, I literally went from knowing sod-all about narrowboats, never having stepped aboard one let alone dreamed of living on one, to owning a narrowboat in the space of just under a year.

I don't think we 'instinctively' knew, I just think that we'd done enough research, and got enough experience to know that it was definitely for us. And we were right, it is just the life we thought it would be and we are so glad we made that leap in to the semi-unknown. Nearly three years later, we've not looked back, despite engine porblems, and two long cold winters.

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  1. I used to live in Cambridge - it is such a beautiful place that I think it goes a long way to counteract the cold winters - although I do remember the Siberian wind!

    Pomona x

  2. Oh what an interesting series this will be. I'd love to go on a canal boat holiday (moving into one seems quite a step too far at this stage!) but I've no idea how you go about it when you've never done any type of boating before.