december 2023

december 2023

liveaboard boaters in winter

Looking at the weather forecast has become far more pertinent now that we spend a lot of the year on our narrow boat and for those of you who live aboard permanently, the fluctuation in our weather must be a source of concern, especially in these winter months.

A prudent boater will be well prepared with stocks of wood, coal, food and other essentials. Not everyone is in this fortunate position of adequate provision so it is good for us to look out for one another and show kindness and practical help where we are able.

For some, the winter months on the canal are a welcome change from the more frenetic summer season. Hankering down, with a warm stove glowing can be a comfortable retreat from the world around. Infrequent boat moving leads to an opportunity to get to know other boaters moored nearby, showing hospitality to one another.

However not everyone appreciates the winter months. Loneliness can be more pronounced and for some, the lack of sunlight can result in seasonal affective disorder.

frozen canal boats

In these turbulent times with the world so fractured and many full of fear, perhaps we can help one another in small ways, shining light into one another's lives to relieve darkness and fear.

How important it is to care for our neighbour, reminding me that God's first commandment in the Bible is for us to to love him, followed by his second commandment that we love one another. With a New Year ahead of us perhaps a resolution could be to extend the hand of friendship to all those who come into our path.

Wishing you a peaceful 2024, Mary

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About Mary Haines

Mary and her husband Richard now live full time on their 43ft narrowboat Naomhog. Their plan is to travel the waterways March-November and they want to be a 'Listening boat'. "We want to encourage people to tell us their stories because we feel we have time to listen. In this fast paced world listening is not necessarily much valued and is in short supply!"