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About soggyfrog

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    Ox/Bucks Thames
  1. Ex-hire Boats for Newbie Boaters?

    Thanks for all the comments! Some great starting points to look into. SF
  2. Ex-hire Boats for Newbie Boaters?

    Thanks for the swift replies. Good point, ditchcrawler. If we take that path we'll definitely look at getting one straight from the hire company. RLWP, in what ways don't they suit liveaboards? I'd be interested to know more...
  3. Hi all, My friend and I are looking into buying a boat, and another friend has recommended considering an ex-hire boat as these are most likely to give us the two separate bedrooms that we require, as well as the space to live comfortably without always being under each others feet. Does anyone have any advice relating to purchasing an ex-hire boat? Are they generally better maintained than privately owned boats? Anything else we should be thinking about/asking about/looking for? I'd be quite happy taking on a "blank canvas" and fitting it out from scratch, but apparently that's too optimistic for first-timers! Thanks in advance. SF
  4. Handsome young dog needs a new home

    I fostered a rescued greyhound for a good few months, they've got incredibly sensitive stomachs, and she'd not long finished racing before her life was turned upside down. After a load of crap advice from P@H and various people with no experience of greyhounds or anything other than dustbins on legs, I did some Google research and on both greyhound-specific and sensitive-doggy-stomach articles, the combo of chicken, white fish and rice was recommended. It reminded me that back in my youth (!) I house-and-dog-sat for a dog that was fed exclusively on pollock and rice. She even had her own drawer in the freezer! Anyway, the short version is that I would recommend a fasting period, followed by the chicken, white fish and rice diet (good quality though or that throws up other problems!) Jolleyes impressed me (I wouldn't touch anything from P@H with a 100ft barge pole) so see what they've got in the way of "sensitive" dog food. We always used to soak dry food in a third (in terms of bowl-ful) of almost boiling water, then leave it to cool. It doubled as a good training exercise too! Sincerely, Barry, I wish you the best of luck in finding that beautiful pup a new home. If I weren't currently in pet-unfriendly rented accommodation we'd be making plans.
  5. Handsome young dog needs a new home

    I've seen a few bikes and sidecars with pups in them. I can't get over the cartoon mental image of doggy helmet, goggles and scarf...
  6. Anyone have experience of cat liveaboard

    Great thread. Laughing so much that my face hurts! Thankfully our cat has turned into a stay-at-home most of the time. He's a scaredycat anyway, doesn't like strange noises, but will run up to greet the car when we get home. Has run away from more animals than he's ever caught, and has taken to guarding the next door neighbour's rabbit since our guinea pigs passed away. All in all, I think he'll take rather well to living on a boat. There are nooks for him too explore, people for him to meow at, various vantage points for him to safely survey the passing world, and very few cats to contest his ownership of the boat. 'cause he's a complete wuss!!
  7. Residential Mooring advice needed!

    I second that. Whilton is great for having a look around boats and finding what you really like. I went with my friend whose boat requirements are radically different to mine, so the questions that he raised really made me think about what I wanted, why I wanted it and how practical it would be. In the end, he found his dream boat which was a 72ft trad stern with a boatman's cabin... whereas I was looking at pocket-sized cruiser sterns!
  8. Residential Mooring advice needed!

    There's no reason that I can see that you wouldn't be able to achieve it in 4 years. It's not as though you're leaping in blindly with no clue about what you're doing. You're asking all the questions, getting yourselves on those all-important waiting lists and appear to both be working toward the same goal. VERY important. I, on the other hand, am trying to convince my best friend that instead of buying a "house" we should buy somewhere on the waterfront and invest in a boat as well. Totally doable. Would be easier if it wasn't aquaphile vs aquaphobe! Keep your hopes up high. It will all come together! SF
  9. Gone and done it! What now...?

    I find myself falling for boats that are far "oop north" too, and I'll tell you, being able to drive doesn't make it any easier! Bed next to kitchen is odd. In the few years that I've been looking for a boat, I've discovered I'm really quite fussy about the layout. Oh, and if it's any consolation, the first boat that stole my heart had alarm bells ringing when my friend (technical advisor!) and I went to look at it... and then it disappeared, never to be seen again... Keep the faith. You'll find the boat that's just right for you. SF
  10. Living Afloat in Europe

    Thanks Peter - we were looking at barges specifically for Europe
  11. Living Afloat in Europe

    A recent trip to Belgium and a mild fixation with Dutch barges has brought us round to the discussion of living afloat abroad, particularly in the region of Belgium (give or take a few miles!) I'm curious to know if anyone on these forums is living on a boat in Europe, where'er that may be, and what real life experiences they could share. We don't know the first thing about it; for starters, how easy is it to find moorings and what are the costs like? I'm curious to know how it compares to living in the UK on a boat - do they consider it a real residence or would we still need a bricks 'n' mortar address too? If anyone has any pointers - even just pointing to a different resource - that would be great. This isn't a decision to be taken lightly or made soon, but I want to be armed with all the information before we start down that path. Happy Boating all!
  12. Guy Martin in Reckless

    More like "Guy Martin crashes bikes and narrowboats"! Bless him...
  13. has, after months spent looking at cruiser stern shorties, fallen in love with a 65ft trad stern...

  14. Guy's boat

    By 'eck - you'd be drunk before the end of the opening credits!