Wedding / Wending

Wedding / Wending

Please excuse the longish blog absence, which we’ve productively spent getting married and moseying down south and out to sea. Last Monday, six weeks after setting off (on our wedding night no less, and still in nuptial garb as the pic above attests) we finally hit France (not quite so well-attired…).

It has been, I think, everything I always hoped a honeymoon would be. Perhaps laundrettes, and eating cheap curries on Belgrave Road in Leicester, and getting rained on, and getting sunburnt noses, and locks, and long leisure centre showers after cursory token swims aren’t everyone’s idea of a loved-up break.

Ditto, last-min DIY boat modifications to get it sea-ready, from handmade bow and stern covers (a week of stitching) to a mast fashioned from curtain pole to carry a single, white lamp the mandatory 1m above navigation lights.

And certainly, there is *nothing* romantic about a 12-hour crossing from Sheerness to Calais aboard a confusedly bucking narrowboat. Just fright.

But no one, I challenge, will dispute the extraordinary happiness to be had arriving on the other side in one piece. That a floating bookshop-cum-60ft flat-bottomed home has survived too? Even better. And best: having the whole thing bookended by a husband who didn’t try to talk us out of any of it, and who gallantly pretended not to notice me falling a little bit more hopelessly in love with him along the way.

Onwards through French and Belgian waterways for a couple more months now. We’re heading to Burgundy ultimately, but there is more conventional honeymooning to do first. Bruges! Lille! Paris! Pretty little patisserie-bejewelled places in between! All bookshop business is temporarily suspended, I’m delighted to report, until further notice.