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Life On A Boat is Intolerable...


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...without an ever growing list of items that, once would be considered unnecessary luxuries but now that I'm knocking on a bit, seem to be indispensable. I'm currently packing for a trip down to RT, and I've just realised how much stuff I take with me that I feel is essential.


Take underwear for example. I'm at a loss without my thermal underwear, even in the height of summer the thermals are packed...just in case. If that's not bad enough there is the item that the wearing of, in her presence, my better half considers to be a request on my part to live a life of celibacy...and that's the elastic that stop my glasses falling in the water when they drop off my face.


Microfibre cloths are another item. I can't seem to pass a pound shop without adding to my ever growing and glowing collection of brightly coloured cleaning cloths. Come wash day folks 'round my neck of the woods think I'm some sort of magician or perhaps a fool...in motley.


The special cup. Is there some point in life when you just can't drink tea or coffee out of any old beaker? If there is I've hit it. I mean Royal Tudor has a set of mugs on board...but still I have to pack my favourite Eyore mug! My watch, currently a rather smart U-boat watch, I can't leave for the boat without it...even though there are four clocks, a tide clock and a barometer on board Royal Tudor. Some nights I have to get up to hide the clocks to stifle the noise of the ticking.


The candle stub. I mean...WHY? It's not for lighting...no of course not...it's just in case I need to wax something, like thread to sew up a canopy or fishing line so if I want to fish on the surface. But like the myriad of other little 'so important can't do without items'...I just can't do without them. Five Swiss Army knives...each with a different set of tools for getting boy scouts out of horses hooves. Five!


Is it just me or is everyone like this? Is it a part of boating?



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In the days when we hired, we always used to pack what we called "the Broads box" with everything we needed for a week away, including a torch, matches, my faithful Jarrold's guide, the Hamilton tide computer, maps, candles, penknife, can and bottle openers, salt, pepper, clothes pegs, washing up liquid and other "essentials".  Now we are proud owners, we keep all of this stuff on the boat.


However, old habits die hard and we still back a box-albeit one that contains my iPad (complete with weather, maps, tide and kindle apps), mobile phone, chargers, mobile wifi unit and high gain wifi aerial and a range of pills for routine medication against the ailments of late middle age.


How times have changed!





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Yes my essentials are pretty much like Steve's, + the 3 Mifi. Sad innit? :)

Yes and no Polly, all that modern technology may save a life, or inform a loved one of important news, where before it was a chalk board at the Bure - Thurne junction and the like.



cheers Iain.

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Presumably swmbo de-cruds the toilet and scrapes and anti-fouls the boat's bottom? Only fair that you clean the windows. 

Ah now you see I have this one covered. Since the purchase of the boat, my other half has never laid eyes on it in the flesh so I have to use Timbo's Theory of Transgenerational Televisual Telemetry. It goes something like this...The television has a remote control unit so I can change channels without moving from the armchair and I have a daughter to fetch me the remote control unit. In addition to this I use the theorems of one Mr Montague Python like so https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=utuchVE_56M and one day I will have the shiniest boat on the Broads!

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Go on then -  what is a   ' A shackle spanner,'      Is it that different from normal spanners?



Yes, it's for opening shackles rather than undoing nuts. Especially useful on sailing boats. Good ones have inbuilt bottle openers. See:



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I take two of everything just in case! plus a box of stuff I think I won't need just in case I need it, I have one cup that's the only one I'll use, Tea and Coffee in other cups just don't taste the same, and I'm glad to see I'm not the only one that collects Micro Fibre cloths, but mine have to be the large ones, that I buy in packs of six or ten, drives Judi mad because she says why don't you just take them home and wash them, plus I always keep two little hiking compasses on board, to line up the TV aerial after I found that if I point it between 230 and 240 Degrees I can get a picture anywhere on the Broads apart from Horning, never worked out why but I can't get TV, Mobile or Internet there,,




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Hi Frank,

My boat kit is now housed in two reuseable Morrisons bags that are now overflowing with stuff for the boat.

All types of cleaning materials for the gelcoat, canopy etc,sticky stuff remover, the odd microfibre cloth, a fid and materials for canopy repairs (studs and press studs).

Totally agree with poor reception of anything at Horning, but after saying that you can struggle to get a mooring especially at the green.

TV not a problem we usually take a few DVD's, we are not interested in sport, soaps or the news when on holiday.

I would rather sit on the back of the boat with a drink and watch the world go by.



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