A personal post from Graham Ellis
Lisa and Graham live in Melksham, Wiltshire, England

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NB ''Aspiration''

I was walking around the back streets of Melksham with morning and I passed a house with a steel narrow boat on the drive; covered in tarpaulins and with some green algae / moss growing on what had been, I'm sure, pristine black paint work at one time. Grass was growing up through the flagstones around the boat, and an old car and motor bike were lying around too.

A twinge of sadness; I shared a narrow boat - Blyth Spirit - with the family for 20 years. We bought her when son Chris was a toddler, and sold her after he got married. Chris and Kimberly (born after we bought 'the boat') could crew and drive her as if she was a part of them. Many, many good times on board - and some interesting and eventful days that we look back at and smile at through the rosy tinted spectacles of time. I can remember waking in the middle of the night to a drunken group of 20 using the boat as a table for their beer bottles (and just me and Kimberly, then around 11, on board). And waiting for Lisa at Hatton station with Chris, friend Hugh and other sufficiently bored to be spitting on the platform and trying to make patterns in their spit. Rosy spectacles.

A year or so back, we sold Blyth Spirit. Increasingly busy times, and a boat that needed a little more TLC as she got older, meant that we used her less than was practical and kept me awake at night worrying about when I was next going to get to the boat yard to keep her running. Increasing bureaucracy - the equivalent of a boat MOT scheme that changes and set tighter and retrospective standards as time went on, Chris married and away, Kimberly off too. Time to move on.

So - a twinge of sadness when I saw someone's aspirations lying on their drive this morning, but a confirmation that we had done the right thing to acknowledge the need for change. Doesn't mean that we're getting old and slowing down - oh no, we're on to appropriate new and exciting projects - in fact the Well House Manor project is an exciting new future - not just an aspiration as it will be so much more. If you follow the link in the sentence above as I write this article , you'll find it's just a place holder. Come back to the archive in a week or two, and you'll read much more.
(written 2006-01-18, updated 2006-06-09)

 
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This is a page archived from The Horse's Mouth at http://www.wellho.net/horse/ - the diary and writings of Graham Ellis. Every attempt was made to provide current information at the time the page was written, but things do move forward in our business - new software releases, price changes, new techniques. Please check back via our main site for current courses, prices, versions, etc - any mention of a price in "The Horse's Mouth" cannot be taken as an offer to supply at that price.

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