contentedsouls

Join us on our travels around Europe aboard our Dutch Tjalk Francoise

  • Jill Budd

    After 6 years aboard our Narrowboat Matilda Rose in the UK, we took the plunge and shipped her across to Europe. After 2 years in Europe we knew we didn't want to return to the UK so took the plunge and purchased a 1902 20 mtr Dutch Tjalk called Francoise and are now continuing our travels of the waterways of Europe in a buxom wench

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I’m back–I think himself has sorted the internet problems

Posted by contentedsouls on 23/06/2017

A lot of catching up to do. We are now happily ensconced in Holland and actually very glad because many friends are stuck in Belgium and Northern France due to low water levels and, subsequent, restricted lock movements; a problem for boaters in Ireland too apparently. Being below sea level we are not having a problem; just a matter of keeping the snorkel and periscopes clear and clean. I’ll publish quite a lot of blogs in a row now now to catch up

Liege was to be our last stop before crossing into ‘foreign’ Belgium (i.e. Flanders), although we didn’t know it at the time.

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Big, big, River Meuse means big, big, ships and big, big locks which means quite a lot of concentration and, I find, quite tiring. Very grateful for the communication that the hands free, Bluetooth, headsets provide – certainly reduces my stress levels.

Arriving at Liege, we moored in front of Jantina to get away from the fountain that frequently showered you and your boat (whether you wanted it to or not) when the wind was in a certain direction. The quay led straight into acres of parkland with it’s own stately home providing Muttley with a vast private paddling pool – probably wasn’t allowed, but there were no signs telling you to keep out and  nobody seemed to care.

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I was feeling ridiculously tired and was more than happy playing with Muttley on our island parkland and, probably, for the first time ever since I became a continuous cruiser, I couldn’t summon the energy to drag my way into the city of Liege to explore. Maybe another time. So this is all I saw. Amazing watching the crane arm come out and swing around a cradle to allow window cleaners access – a bit like the exterminator arm on a giant Dalek.

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That evening we had a discussion with Lisa and Geoff regarding continuing down the Meuse and the scarcity of moorings and a change of plan was hatched. We decided to turn off The Meuse and cruise through Flanders.

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