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Saturday, February 06, 2010


Well pepes i thought i`d better dig around for something to blog as lack of cruising has depleted the blog material store. After all you really don`t want to know when i went shopping or how long i read a book or when i cleaned the windows, it`s just not my style.

Have been in my present location now for 8 days which even in winter time is un-usual for me. The fact is that since the freeze just before Christmas that threw all my plans overboard there has been no sense of urgency to move at a fast pace owing to stoppages ahead.

Initially i planned to get through all the stoppages but the thought of smashing through ice and stripping all the blacking that i applied late last year somehow didn`t appeal. So now i am taking my time as i won`t have a clear run till March 5th when Braunston maintenance is finished.

The big freeze thawed and enabled me to move a little but in the picture above taken about a week ago the ice was back if only for a couple of days.

So plenty of time on my hands to surf the net and in doing so i found a link from one of the canal forums to a satellite direction tool. It`s called Dishpointer and below is a page showing the satellite direction from a mooring i was on just below lock 66 at Hemel Hempstead.
As the site seems to have an American slant it might be an idea to add UK to the location in your search. Once you find your bit of canal you can click the exact mooring and the satellite line will re-position.

My 2yr contract with T Mobile for Internet access was coming to an end and as i was happy with the coverage on my cruise of the system i decided to re-new. The dongle - yes it has a techi name but dongle is what we all understand- has stood still in the technology advance of the last
2yrs so rather than just re-new the contract i up graded to a new "mobile broadband USB stick modem" there i`ve said it, once more donnnnnngle.
Above in the left corner weighing in at 3.6mbps the present title holder and contesting the right to interject with my Dell laptop and weighing in at a mighty 7.2 mbps is black stick.
After 5 mins of fast surfing i declared black stick the winner by a long way with points scored at every click of the mouse.
The original contract for 2yrs was at £20 per month with 2 £60 cheque refunds equating to £15 per month over the contracted period. Next week would have ended my commitment and if i had done nothing the £20 debit at my bank would have continued, sorry T Mobile but i`m keeping tabs on you. So a new contract of 18mths with a new dingle dongle of twice the speed and back to £15 p mth was not a hard decision to make.

Being stuck this far south has it`s bonuses in as far as the family are close by and a few visits to the grandchildren have been easy. One such trip was made this very morning when i went to
g`daughter Jordan play for Garston Ladies under 10 team. On a cold wintry day sipping cups of hot tea a small crowd watched them lose 6-0 to a team from Hitchin. Jordan even if you had won 6-0 i wouldn`t have been any prouder, well done all the girls.

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NB Valerie & Steam Train by Les Biggs

NB Valerie & Steam Train by Les Biggs