We haven’t been on boats very long, just 18 months in fact, yet the time when I lived in a home that didn’t float seems like a distant and hazy memory. However there are some things I very definitely remember that I used to do and am now no longer able to do due to living in a capsizable house.
1) Shower. Just, like, whenever
When I lived in my South-West London flat, hot water came out of the tap all the time. Seriously it was just like, whenever you want hot water, BOOM, there hot water is. It was a magical mystery.
Sadly everything about canal living is cold and wet, including the water. Joyous impromptu showers have become a thing of the past. Now if I want hot water, I must first either a) light a fire to get hot water from the back boiler or b) run the engine to heat the water in the calorifier.
2) Have dry hair
Let’s make that four hours notice if you need me to be clean and presentable as I also no longer own a hairdryer.
Although I am pretty bad at styling my own hair anyway, I could at the very least make sure it was dry back when I lived in a flat. On the boat however, a hair dryer is just too much for our mini inverter and I have to resort to drying my hair in the wind like some sort of woodland nymph.
3) Not have a dog
The good thing about being a grown up is that you get to make all of your own decisions (well, most of your own decisions. The government make a lot of them for you like “Don’t kill people” and “Don’t slide down the middle of escalators”).
The bad thing about being a grown up is that you get to make all of your own decisions.
Although we were technically grown ups before we moved on to a boat, we had been renting for most of our adult lives and so had a certain level of autonomy taken away from us when it came to making really stupid decisions like getting a dog.
Unleashed on our very own boat however, we stuck it right to the man by going out and getting a massive, mental dog pretty much straightaway.
Nearly £400 in vet bills and countless destroyed slippers later, we’re wondering if landlords were doing us a favour in preventing us from getting a dog as big as a haystack.
That being said, when I get into bed at night and Skipper comes in and spoons me, I am both partially creeped out and 100% sure I wouldn’t be without her.
4) Attend social gatherings
If you’ve read my blog before you’ll know that it’s taking us a super long time to get to, or even near, London. Since London is where most of our socialising takes place, we’ve spent most of 2015 in a state of reclusive dog/boat-obsession. Even when we’re in London or near a handy train station, lots of boat-related incidents can and will prevent me from attending your social event.
5) Have an Instagram account that was 0% pictures of canals
Before I moved onto a boat, my Instagram photos fell largely into two camps: Stuff That I Thought Was Funny and Stuff That I Thought Was Arty (But Wasn’t).
Stuff That I Thought Was Funny:
Stuff That I Though Was Arty (But Wasn’t):
Now my Instagram photos fall into one camp: Pictures of Canals (with a 5% deviation for Pictures of my Dog or Pictures of my Dog Near Canals).
So I guess you could actually call this an improvement, depending on how much you really really like pictures of canals.
(If you do happen to really really like pictures of canals, you can always follow me over on Instagram. If you really hate pictures of canals but really love, say, pictures of hilarious boat dogs, you should probably just follow someone else.)
If you want to know more weird stuff about boatlife or even just normal stuff about boatlife, you can also find me on Twitter where I’m happy to answer questions using all my years of boating experience (which are few) and all my knowledge of boating (which is little). See you there!