I’ve been on the planet some 53 years and I can’t remember a day that I’ve not loved the water. Swimming, sailing, scuba diving… You name it, I’ve done it.
When I told my family that I was going to retire onto a narrowboat, not one eyebrow was raised… it seemed… Right… it seemed… very Nick. There is just one problem! I’m too young to retire just yet and by too young, I mean I can’t afford to. Mainly due to the fact that I never did become a famous rock star or premiership footballer. Having said that, I’ve moved from dreaming about it, onto the planning stage. It’s not that much further ahead but it makes me feel good thinking this way.
There was is a thought process to all of this. I don’t have children, so any thoughts that I need bricks and mortar to leave when I die are null and void. I’m single and can afford to please myself, although this could change if a lady comes into my life. I don’t want to live an alternative lifestyle as such, but I don’t want to live a normal domestic life either. I don’t want to live totally off grid, but I do want to have that choice.
When I was young my father would always tell me when we were doing DIY, to measure twice and cut once. When it comes to living on a narrowboat I thing it’s more measure 32 times, re-think my idea, measure another 32 times and then plough ahead with my original concept. My concept so far is 58ft, one bedroom, one bathroom, one galley and one saloon… what could possibly go wrong with such a simple plan. apart from the heating, the electrics, the gas, the water, the fit out, the plumbing, the painting…..
Im not that stupid though. if its more technical than putting in a light bulb.. I’ll get in an expert… but more about that in another blog post.
Over the last few months, youtube has been a great resource in furthering my dreams. It started by looking at blogs on youtube from The Narrowboat Lad (Dan Brown), Cruising the cut, Saxon and Emma on Narrowboat Zero Gravity and Flow with Mylo. From there, I’ve been watching anything with the hashtag van life, RV living, including Gone with the Wynns and small space living. All have in some way enlightened me about my chosen future. Ways to live small but comfortably. Small surroundings (living space) but with great expectations to just live.
So maybe youtube isn’t the first resource that you would think about when considering a life on a narrowboat, but if I hadn’t I would have missed out. Just go onto youtube and search Narrowboat, Living on a narrowboat, Narrowboat holiday… theres quite a few. Some have given me ideas, some insperation and some are just nice to relax to with a cup of coffee on a wet Sunday afternoon after the good old beef diner.
Dan aka Narrowboat Lad ake a sort of interesting life is a nice young man who lives aboard a small narrowboat called Tilley. His vlogs are about everyday life on the canals of the UK, walking the hills of North Wales, his friends and his job. Dan grabbed the alternative lifestyle at a young age. Dan on youtube
Emma and Saxon on Narrowboat Zero Gravity are a young couple who have been videoing their progress from thinking about buying a narrowboat to live on, through to the launch. Im looking forward to their next update. Saxon talks (a lot) and has steadily grown on me. Emma comes across as lovely but really needs to speak up. What she does say is interesting, but Im sure Saxon hogs the mic. Narrowboat Zero Gravity on Youtube
Cruising the cut is more my age, maybe a tad younger, but not as half good looking. He’s an ex TV journalist so knows how to but a good vlog together. He gives a good insight into buying a second hand boat and making the needed improvements towards a live-aboard. Cruising the cut on youtube
Flow with Mylo is from Mylo, a sometimes bus driver and sometimes Circus performer. Interesting content on some of his videos and always done with an element of tongue in cheek and quirkiness. Flow with Mylo on Youtube
So now… The Blogy type website. My intention is to write something that I can look back on in my dotage and see from whence I came. I will be uploading videos to youtube and generally keeping a diary both written and visual. Whilst ultimately it’s for me, I’m hoping that as I get better at this, others will think it interesting too. If you are a boater, or live an alternative lifestyle or live the van life in an RV or motorhome or if you’re into small space living or you happen to be Claudia Winkleman, then please get in touch, I’d love to hear from you. Any words of advice, words of wisdom, words of encouragement, questions, answers – its an open invitation.
I was once told that if you wanted to give the angels a good laugh.. Tell them that you have a plan. I guess life can be uncertain, and, its because of this uncertainty that through this journey I will no doubt contradict myself. Stay with me though, I never said the search for an uncomplicated life would be an uncomplicated process.