Hopefully now, those of you on the subscription list are only receiving one email per blog. The Corsica and Alps photos are now in our online gallery, nearly all captioned at: https://www.kerr.net.au/piwigo/index.php?/category/259
We are a little behind with our blogs because our Internet for the month is running out too early. The approximately 500km trip to Migennes was uneventful with relative light traffic. We diverted off the main autoroute for lunch at an Auberge and also visited Époisses. One of our favorite cheeses comes from there and bears the same name.
Tired, we arrived at the boatyard where Anja is stored. Not quite ready for the busy 8 days of preparation work. Every previous year, we have stayed at Les Chouettes. However, after many years of hard work, Chantal and Christian have sold the premises, moved to an apartment and purchased a motorhome so that they too can roam Europe. We could have stayed at a nearby camping ground or another chambre d'hôte or a hotel. Instead, we stayed on Simon's péniche in which he used to live with his mother before buying this boatyard. This was extremely convenient, being 50metres from Anja and was fully contained with all facilities. It is large, equivalent to a house in size. Only occasionally does he let people stay there as it has been his home for many years. So, we were very fortunate. Thanks Simon!
We worked hard every day but had the nights free. The boat was dirty from the winter and from dust in the yard so there was a fair amount of cleaning. However, inside was perfect with no dust, no mould, no water leaks; unlike some other boats, we never have problems like that. The three solar fans undoubtedly help. Because winter is often -12 degrees, everything freezable had to be emptied and/or treated with antifreeze before winter. All was good. We had packed up everything possible the previous year and wrapped the mast and bowsprit in covers. All else was in lockers or the engine room or otherwise inside the boat. We did have one sadness, having opened a porthole and then experienced very heavy rain which damaged 17 or more books.
As well as unpacking everything, we had to reconnect power and water and make sure everything was okay. We only had a problem with one tap washer- not bad after 8 months of storage. Because the boat had been in one position for 8 months, there was some minor sun damage to a few parts of hull paint and varnish on the sunny side of the boat. These incurred about 8hrs of unexpected work to fix. Scheduled work included replacing the timber on the boarding ladder, sanding and re-painting the rudder, re-gluing/sanding some timber on the mast support and then oiling it. The rudder had not been repainted for 6 years unlike the rest of the boat which we redid a couple of years ago. We also stocked up on provisions including that staple item.......wine.
Our stay encompassed two Thursdays, so Penny twice visited the truly excellent Migennes Marché. For the first time ever, David did not make it to the market. We returned the rental car (always a big relief) and were craned back into the river. Penny organised and potted geraniums and herbs during the cranage. The boatyard also applied tar where the boat had been on chocks over winter because we had asked them to apply two coats of tar to the hull while we were back home in Australia. There was one slightly problem with the cranage. I (David ) did not think we would fit into the space at the quay (which is supposed to be kept clear), because an English fellow had put his small (and cute) boat at one end. It was only when Anja was hanging over the space, with the 40tone crane at the edge of the river, that it became clear Anja would not fit. So there was hasty rearrangement and we made it- just- with the little boat centimeters from us and another boat and our rudder missing the boat behind by centimeters only because it was angled to one side. Our bow and bowsprit were leaning menacingly over the little boat which was less than half our width. We were too tired to go anywhere that day, so Simon kindly let us remain overnight at his loading quay where we had a long and excellent sleep. The next day, we headed off downstream on the Yonne River
Dave and Penelooe