Friday, 23 September 2011

Thursday 15th September 11, York to Rickmansworth

Up fairly early and slowly and chaotically got my stuff together for my trip to Rickmansworth and Basingstoke.  I got the stove lit, and later had a bath and washed my hair.  I collected a few apples, pears and nuts together as a thank you present for my hostess for the next couple of days.  I made sure I had all my performance stuff, plus balloons, my last bag so I'll have to order some more.

At about 11.30 I set out to town to catch the midday train to Stevenage, which is exactly 2 hours away, so I had my sandwich on the train, and put my computer on so I could get on with deleting emails, as my inbox is permanently congested and any time I can get to weed it is really good.  I was pleased with this trip as the advance ticket was especially cheap, just £9 for the single journey. 

Once in Stevenage I found the bus station and the bus to take me over to Luton.  I decided on an all-day Rover ticket, costing £8.  I thought this would probably save me money, as the 50 minute journey to Luton was £3.70 and therefore the nearly 2 hour trip to Rickmansworth would possibly be twice that, although the driver in Stevenage didn't know.  In Luton there was quite a wait, but eventually the 321 service came and a very friendly driver took us down to Watford and on to Ricky.  I chatted a bit with a woman who must have been in her early 60s who was listening to dub reggae on her personal hifi and reading Oscar Wilde, and heading back to her 'lovely Rasta Man'.  I love public transport!  You just wouldn't meet such a variety of characters if you were cooped up in a tiny metal box all by yourself.

Serena was waiting in the station car park in her little car..... and we again just managed to fit all my weird-shaped gear into it, the last item going in on top of me.  She called in on a supermarket before going home... her boat doesn't have a lot of storage space, so she needed to get a few bits and bobs.  I'd bought my tea whilst the bus was stopped in Watford, so she didn't have to get anything for me really, although I was glad of the coffee and soya milk.  The fruit went down well... Serena's 3 year old son especially liked the James Grieve apple.

Serena's son's Dad Julian lives on a narrowboat, but he also has a 7 or 8 metre launch or cruiser which is kitted out to be able to be lived in... but it's not being used, so Serena had spent quite a bit of time cleaning it and getting it ready for me to sleep in.  This was my first ever night on board a boat.  I had a really comfortable night, very cosy, tucked into the bow or prow of this little vessel.

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