Well it seems an eternity since I’ve written on here, or indeed been on the boat. The pandemic that we dare not speak it’s name put paid to not only visiting the boat in late winter / early spring but also scuppered our summer cruising plans.
Before C***d we were looking at returning to Anticus around the end of March and casting off in the general direction of the Netherlands at the beginning of April when our winter mooring agreement ran out at Yachtcub Flandria.
However a week before the off we were in lockdown at home in West London, and so we remained for 12 weeks. And as luck would have it just as we were about to set off to Bruges, I had to visit hospital a bit urgently after showing the signs of a stroke! Great care from London Ambulance Service and the stroke team at Charing Cross Hospital meant than just 4 weeks later we were loading the car and heading for le Shuttle heading for Belgium.
And here we are, safely back aboard. Chris our marina neighbour, an ex-firefighter like myself had gone above and beyond the call of duty by giving Anticus a clean, which made our return and even happier time.
Prior to the delays earlier in the year we had been making plans to cruise into the Netherlands this summer taking in the sights and experiences of Nijmegen, Arnhem, Deventner and Harderwijk before coming back to Bruges to sit the winter out. Unfortunately, we have had to change our itinerary this year, so I think that the Netherlands will wait till next summer and this year we will concentrate on the delights of the Belgian waterways and canals. The marina, Flandria, have been exceptionally good to the winter moorers and not raised our mooring fees up to the summer rates. This usually happens on 1 April and lasts until the end of September when the winter rate of around £100 per month rises to £350 per month.
The management have agreed preferential rates for us for the rest of the summer and right now we are looking at basing ourselves here in Bruges and cruising out for a few days here and there to explore Belgium. In the mean-time there is plenty of cleaning and sorting to do to get Anticus ship-shape and Bristol-fashion for the remainder of the summer.