Wednesday 4th to Friday 6th July
As much as it is wonderful to have friends on board, it is lovely to have the boat all to ourselves. We had three lovely relaxing days in Chalon – a meal at our favourite vegan eatery – La Pierre Vie, shop ups at Monoprix and Carrefour, some spares from the bricolage, and some afternoon snoozes. There was also some rain which cooled things down a bit. And the marina is great.
Brief sojourn in Paris
Saturday 7th to Monday 9th July
Kare’s brother who lives in the States was in Paris! We decided to pop up to visit him.
Took the Flixbus from Chalon up to Paris. Relatively cheap. And necessary as there were still some rail strikes going on.
Note – even bus drivers have their lunch hour! We stopped at some random motorway lorry/bus/car garage eatery etc and hung about there for an hour while the driver went off for lunch!
But we got to Paris Bercy bus station dead on time at 17.30.
Walked in the stinking heat along the Seine and then to Karen’s brother Mike’s place they had rented for a couple of weeks.
So many people about! After the relative quietness of the smaller French villages I found the people exhausting!
However it was a pleasant couple of days, catching up with Karen’s family and enjoying Paris. Managed to find a few vegan eateries.
Monday we took the train from Paris Bercy back to Chalon and arrived back on board just before 20.00
While we were away a Swiss chap (potential buyer) had come to look at the boat. Unfortunately, she is somewhat older than he wants.
Chalon-sur-Saone to St Jean-de-Losne
Tuesday 10th to Sunday 15th July
Thinking we were sort of on top of the engine issues, I started up in the morning – and no raw cooling water coming out the exhaust. Could not see what the problem was, but managed to prime the system and get going, Arrived at Verdun-sur -le Doubs okay. But with the usual look inside the engine space found rather a lot of water in the bilges. River water this time. Now discovered that 2 hose clamps in the exhaust system had come off and the cooling water was pouring out from there into the bilge! Reconnected that and tightened up a few other connections.
Got going again in the morning, but I turned the engine off in the lock and of course lost suction in the system. Limped along till we could stop at Seurre and re-prime the system. At the next and final lock I kept the engine running and we finally arrived at H2O in St Jean-de-Losne at about 3 o’clock in the afternoon.
Despite all this it was good to be back on the Saone – wide open water, fisherman on the banks, the occasional commercial barge and larger locks.
Relief to arrive there without a major disaster.
And back in St Jean-de-Losne
But another issue at the marina in H2O is the weed!! The last couple of years it has got worse and worse and they don’t seem to do anything about it. The growth has just about taken over the whole marina and there are just the enforced channels which the boats coming and going keep open. It is so bad one cannot even think of using the bow thruster.
I had told H2O when we were arriving and had set up meetings on Thursday with both Phillippe to discuss engine repairs and Nicolas to plan the sale of the boat.
All according to plan – We don’t think there are major issues with the engine – but a thorough servicing and going over needed. And we have signed up a mandate for H2O to market Shangri La. I don’t think I will achieve quite as much as hoped for, but not too far off.
Next couple of days spent doing laundry and cleaning the boat and preparing to leave.
But it was weekend of the 14th July – Bastille Day – and the 2018 Soccer World Cup final between France and Croatia.
A lovely little pub – Brasserie du Port has sort of become our local here in St jean, mainly because of the very reasonable beer and wine prices. We celebrated there both Saturday, and Sunday when the French won the final.
Mixed feelings at the moment – Both happy and sad to have Shangri La on the market. But this last trip has been fraught with engine related issues. Hopefully they will get properly solved and when we return later for our final month cruising we will have a trouble-free trip.