Good Morning

I have been moved to write a story. The title has not yet been chosen - suggestions would be welcome.

I was moved to write it as a result of my activities over the Easter Weekend 2003.

At the time of writing, I am a member of the Narrow Boat Trust, indeed I am the WebMaster for the Trust. During that weekend, the two boats owned by the Trust were on show at the ' Steam and Sail' event at Beale Park (on the River Thames).

A new member of the Trust (Dave Davies) had caught a coach at 0510 hrs from Leicester to get to the boats to spend seven days crewing them. I was due to pick him up at Heathrow Central Coach Station and transport him to Beale Park. Dave is a grown up man, but exuded a great, if childlike enthusiasm for all things to do with Canal Working Boats and Canal Carrying. He had obviously done a tremendous amount of research on the subject and was very knowledgeable - his enthusiasm was quite infectious. However, the thing that really lit my fire and started me on the way to writing this story happened shortly after our arrival at Beale Park.

Keith Norfolk had moored the pair near to the mooring point for the 'trip boats' at Beale Park. We had to walk across a stretch of grass (thirty, maybe fifty yards) to get to the pair. The excitement coming from Dave was quite palpable and infectious - kid with a new toy sort of thing.

Well it got to me, a hardened, cynical, retired old fart (been on and around the cut for more years than I care to count) and anyway, a narrowboat is a narrowboat is a narrowboat !!! However Dave opened my eyes and my heart and I looked at and saw the boat in a quite different way. I fell in love with these big beautiful boats all over. I suddenly re-realised why I love the cut and all things to do with it. Thank you Dave for bringing about this 'road to Damascus' experience.

AnyRoadUp, that is enough of the how and why I came to be writing this story. I am not sure that I am a very good person to be writing it, I fear that I do not have the eloquence or grammatical skills to write a very readable production. However, I do have a few things going for me:-