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Everything posted by BlueStringPudding

  1. Read the ingredients list. They're written on each product page. Then you'll know.
  2. For shower gel, shampoo etc, I like House of Mistry products. https://www.houseofmistry.com/body-care
  3. I set off my CO alarms once by leaving the ash bucket on the OUTSIDE stern deck step. Unbeknownst to me, despite the grey ash on the top, the ash beneath was getting very hot and glowing orange. It was enough to spew out carbon monoxide that came in through the vents in the stern doors and that set off the alarms. Ash gets taken outside, well away from the doors, now. And when cooled, dumped into a larger bucket on the deck to be disposed of later. Please be mindful not to leave buckets of ash on the bank if near to the towpath. Passers-by, especially after dark or if skirting round puddles, branches or around other towpath users, might trip over it creating not just the risk of fall-injuries but potential burn injuries too.
  4. This is one for the purse-holders and admins: Does CWDF have a charity number? Asking because Ecclesiastical is running its annual draw to give small grants to charities throughout a chunk of December. All it takes is for one (or better still, lots) of us to nominate CWDF to be in with a chance: https://movementforgood.com/12days/#nominateACharity If we don't have a registered charity number, they also accept nominations for not-for-profit organisations and community interest groups. We just need to know the "formal" name of CWDF as an organisation, and which of their categories we fall into. It's easy money, unlike with most other funding organisations. Perhaps the purse holders here would like to take a look at the link above, and start a thread encouraging us all to nominate CWDF, giving us the correct details to put in when we nominate? I know a few websites and small community groups that have benefited from their grants, so I thought it might help with forum running costs.
  5. Aw. Welcome to the world, Sam πŸ˜ŠπŸ•
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  7. Find a dog sitter who will live with them on the boat while you're away. That way they keep to their usual routine and they're surrounded by familiar smells and belongings so get less stressed. When I've done dog sitting it's always in the owner's home to minimise stress on the dogs. I always meet the dogs and owner on neutral territory a few days or weeks beforehand so the owner can tell if the dogs like me (and If they like me too, of course). A day or two before they leave, I'll be invited round to the home so the dogs not only remember me from a low stress environment previously, but also get used to seeing me in their territory with their owners relaxed in my company. Then when it comes to the day the owners leave, it's not a stressful surprise for the dog when I turn up at the house or boat or stay overnight. I feed the dogs and walk them at the same times their owner does. If they're used to the radio or tele being on at a certain time of day, I ensure that happens too. And theres lots if playtime to keep their minds active. The result is happy doggies who aren't pining or chewing furniture or using the boat as a toilet. It's particularly good for aging dogs, or puppies or boisterous dogs who agency staff refuse to look after or just ignore because they're seen as too much trouble. Poor puppers! If it's a neighbour who is only going to be away a few hours, then the dogs already know me and if the owner prefers, I can pop on board the boat a few times a day and take them out for a wee and a stroll, instead of spending all day with them. I've yet to find any dog care agency staff who are prepared to really spend time with the dogs and keep them to their usual routine. Most seem to want to do the bare minimum, won't clean up after dogs who poop accidentally indoors, or they have multiple animals to get round in a day. If I were you, I would try to arrange well in advance to moor near someone you know well who can be trusted to look after the dogs while you're away - or meet and book someone to come over. Don't be concerned about the boat sinking. But do make sure anyone looking after them isn't freaked out by boats or gets the heebeejeebees every time it rocks a bit, because their nervousness will transfer to the dogs. And someone used to living in a house might do something stupid like leave the water tap dribbling or something electrical switched on, or lights on, draining your batteries. Or they might struggle to lock up hatches, complain about tricky towpath access or whatever. If they're not a boater, give them a bit of basic boat life training. Make sure you're moored somewhere secure so your pins can't pull out and scrotes won't climb on your boat and stress out the dogs. And as said above, definitely don't leave your dogs alone in the summer because boat interiors can get very very hot, even with windows left open. Train a couple of friends or family members on being boat-sitter dog-sitters, then the dogs get to know them well and you'll have more flexibility around when someone is available to help out 🐢😊
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  9. Hi Delibe. Although Alan has made some good points, some of his opinions tend to be phrased as facts. They're not. So you'll notice different boaters will have different opinions about which type of loo is preferable depending on their own experience, their willingness to get up close and personal with their family sewage, their ability to carry heavy cassettes out of the boat and lift them up onto Elsan disposal equipment, and their storage space (you see quite a few toilet cassettes stored on the roof!), among other reasons, not just their cruising patterns. I've typed in bold font beneath Alan's points where I think it's worth considering that the subject could be expanded upon. (You'll need to click on each quote window above to expand it if it displays as weirdly on your device as it does mine) I've used porta potti type boat toilets, and built-in type cassette toilets, and pump out dump through toilets, and pump out macerator toilets. I've listed those in order of my least favourite to my preferred type! A macerator loo with a large pump out holding tank suits me best and has done over 14 years of different cruising patterns in different parts of the country, and in different states of physical health. It won't suit the next person best. That's just how it is with boat toilets. Something to think about if you're really unsure - assuming you don't know any boaters well enough to spend time on their boat using and emptying their loo for the joyous experience - is that it's usually easier to replace a pump out tank with a cassette toilet or porta potti, than it is to do the reverse should you change your mind. (An exception is where the tank is integral to the hull, however it's not that common to find them)
  10. It depends on the make of boat/hire company, but generally hire boats have been well looked after and make good liveaboard boats. Some might need some rearranging inside to get it how you want, or a solid fuel stove added if it doesn't have one (mine didn't), but any boat not built to the buyer's spec will likely need a bit of tweaking as you settle into it. I've had my ex-hire Black Prince boat for 14 years, it had two private owners before me, it's been easy to reconfigure the spaces as my needs have changed over the years, and I love it. Some hire companies work their boats for many years before selling them on (AngloWelsh, for example) or have thinner steel or through bilges - so potentially need more major maintenance work earlier. But others like mine were built 10:6:4 and are sold to private owners after only a few years service as a hireboat.
  11. Post. Change everything you can to electronic correspondence (like bank statements and the like) and what remains will be things you might need to read urgently (like medical appointments) or things you might need as a hard copy or tangible item (online orders, parcels, P60, voting slip or whatever). Then work out how you will receive those things. Does the marina have mailboxes that can receive letters and packages? Will you be collecting parcels instead from your nearest town, which limits you to items sent by Royal Mail postal services if collecting from a Post Office or Delivery Office, they don't usually accept other couriers. There's the Post Restante service (which technically is for a maximum of 3 months but that seems to be at the discretion of the staff) or you can rent a PO Box address if you have had a local residential address recently. Or there are other mail locker services like Mail Boxes Etc - these things charge a rental fee. Amazon collection points and lockers when ordering online (not all Amazon sellers will post to those) EBay click and collect (not all EBay seller's will post to those). Hermes or DPD or Collect Plus locations (there are lots around but again it limits the online shops you can buy from) You can pay for a boaters mail service like Boatmail. They give you an address in Gloucestershire (if you're not in Gloucestershire yourself, you'll find there are endless conversations with councils or NHS or any government department you liaise with, about why your correspondence address isn't local) but Boatmail will either forward your post to your nearest Post Office or scan it and email it to you for about Β£3 a letter, or instead a monthly or annual fee. Do you or a family member have a house whose address you can use instead? Lots of options but all have either cost implications, or limit from whom you can purchase goods, or mean schlepping about to collect your mail. That's just part of boat life.
  12. I'm afraid he'll have to do it himself. I've no idea how to start his chainsaw, and it'll take me till at least his next birthday to hack through him just with my tailoring shears. πŸ€”βœ‚οΈπŸ΅
  13. Another year has passed. Another orbit of the sun. And our friendly neighbourhood arboreal simian is another year older. πŸ’πŸŒž Happy birthday, Tree Monkey πŸ˜ŠπŸ»πŸŽ‚
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  19. BSP already knows about your Professor Alice Roberts fixation. And quite frankly, BSP approves.
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  21. I like House of Mistry shampoos and conditioners. https://www.houseofmistry.com/hair-care
  22. I was about to suggest Warwick Parkway station too. I used to travel from there when working in London. Moored either at Saltisford or at the bottom of the flight or near the Cape pub, or below the two locks towards Kate Boats.
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