Tales from the River Pontoon

Whilst there’s little sailing to be had over the Winter months there’s still plenty to do and it’s not all work work work either – although it often feels just as busy in the off season as when we’re out and about in the Summer. To catch up with the last couple of months aboard Amelie Rose read on…

Amelie Rose at home on the River Pontoon

With the weather closing in back in December it was time to snuggle down for the Winter and the first task there was to switch Amelie Rose from “cruising mode” back into “cosy mode”. This involves laying carpets (well, actually they’re big rubber backed doormats cut to fit), galley updates (installing the microwave, toaster and kettle) and entertainment upgrades (the return of the PlayStation and large monitor).

Amelie goes into Cozymode

This set the scene for my first ever Christmas aboard – for which I set myself the ultimate boat cooker challenge. Could I cook a full Christmas lunch, with all of the trimmings, in Amelie Rose’s GN Espace Levante cooker?  It was no small order in such a small oven, made even harder by a serious hankering for Cauliflower Cheese as an extra accompaniment.

Traditional Christmas Breakfast!

After a traditional (in my family anyway) Christmas breakfast of fizzy stuff, pork pie and pickled onions out came the paper and pen and I set to working out the order that things would need to enter and leave the oven for the whole shebang to work out. It’s a good job that I used to be a project manager is all I can say – but 4 hours later the Christmas miracle was achieved and dinner was served.

Christmas Dinner - With ALL the trimmings

With Christmas and New Year behind us January has mainly seen me focused on updates to the website (see the news article elsewhere). This is primarily a reaction to the vast increase in the number of folks using mobile phones and tablets to access the web, but I also took the opportunity to update the branding so that it fits in with all our other marketing.

With that done and with less than 10 weeks to go until our 9th season kicks off in April it’s time once more to turn our minds to maintenance and preparation. Amelie Rose seemed keen to help that along by suggesting that we start with an upgrade to her shore power system. After a particularly cold night when I suspect that frost got into the external socket the electric kettle suddenly stopped working before it had finished boiling up the water for my morning coffee. Worse still Herr Hecht (our trusty fan heater) also spluttered to a halt.

Blown Shore Power

After reverting to gas to sort the morning coffee (nothing happens without coffee on this boat) a quick bit of fault finding soon uncovered the culprit and a visit to the trusty chandlers and some careful electrickery fixery saw us back up and running in no time. So now it’s on with planning Amelie’s annual lift-out and prepping for her mid-term “in the water” coding survey (a requirement for her as a UK Charter Vessel).

Onwards and onwards!


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