Making Plans for 2017
December 2016 (with less then 2 hours to go till its 2017)
With 2016 a near wash out from a boating perspective it has been a huge relief to start to plan out our 2017 route.
For years there has been an irritating and time consuming fly in the ointment of my life - the job! It has has had to stand front and square in my plans and everything else had to work around it.
Of course, 2016 included a six month sabbatical and that gave me a tantalising taste of things to come, but then reality returned with a vengence as I managed the transition back to the weekly grind in November. Having reflected on our priorities we have decided that there is enough in the pension pot to support us so, from mid April, I will say goodbye to my employer of 37 years.
But let me be clear - I AM NOT RETIRING! I cant even guess how many people have said I am too young to retire, and in a way they are right. I cant sit around all day reading the modern equivalent of the paper, I need to be active. So, after my non retirement I will be busy all summer trading The Jam Butty with Helen, this year making a slow circuit from Birmingham to Bristol and then down to London before returning for the bulk of our Canal Festivals in July to Sept.
The planned route is as follows:
29th April to Mon 1st May - St Richards Festival, Vines Park, Droitwich, WR9 8LB
13th and 14th May - Coombswood Trust Open Weekend, Hawne Basin, Hereward Rise, Halesowen, B62 8AW
1st and 2nd July - Ware Boat Festival, Lee Navigation, Ware, Hertfordshire
22nd and 23rd July - Cosgrove Canal Festival, Cosgrove Lock, Lock Lane, Cosgrove, MK19 7JR
29th July - Linslade Canal Festival, Tiddenfoot Water Park, Linslade, Leighton Buzzard, Buckinghamshire
12th and 13th August - Blisworth Canal Festival, Blisworth, Northamptonshire, NN7 3BU
9th and 10th September - Black Country Boating Festival, Bumble Hole nature Reserve, Windmill End, Netherton, DY2 9HU
16th and 17th September - Tipton Canal Festival, Owen St, Tipton DY4 8HE
23rd and 24th September - Huddlesford Boat Gathering, Huddlesford Ln, Huddlesford, Whittington, Lichfield WS13 8PX
If you want to follow our progress we will be updating our location pave on the Wild Side website.
As well as the cruising and trading I will no doubt be doing some more writing for Waterways World, representing the Boating Businesses at CRT meetings and developing the Handyman business in the winter.
Taken with the chutney making in the autumn and the marmalade making in the winter and a long trip to New Zealand I cant see my pace of life slowing down anytime soon.
Here is to 2017 for all of you. May it be healthy and fun. See you out there!