Friday night sees us all sorted with medical stuff and arriving at the caravan for the second to last weekend of the traveller lifestyle. We dogs are dumped rather unceremoniously for the evening once we've had our supper, as Mum and Dad are off to see a local folk rock band called the Acoustic Architects aboard the sailing barge Edith May moored in Lower Halstow. They are going with fellow barge-nuts, Dave B and Mrs Dave B. They have a thoroughly enjoyable evening listening to the music, singing along where allowed and shaking 'shakers' handed out for audience participation. Dad's anti-biotics preclude any drink, so he's driving, but Mum can have a glass of wine with Mrs Dave B.
The band cover a huge range of styles, with the electric bass giving the folky stuff a bit of raunch and conversely the accoustic guitars toning down the rocky stuff. They cover folk songs including some of their own stuff and songs by Crosby Still and Nash, Simon and Garfunkel, they do Fisherman's Blues (Waterboys), Float like a Cannon Ball, Be Your Baby Tonight, Ice Cream Man and even a Led Zeppelin number. There is a genuine, funny, silly level of banter between the band members and joking with the audience. It's a real blast, says Dad, and in the gorgeous olde-wood surroundings of the barge's main saloon (former main hold). Mum and Dad return starving and there is late night scambled eggs on toast to re-stock before bed.
Saturday is a day for wrangling stuff around the caravan, running errands, visiting the Cambria (now back in port) and, in Mum's case unfortunately, her turn to get injured. Also to get her hair done, prior to the injury. We shop, we buy fresh gas and blue-san and get water for the caravan, Dad digs another toilet-pit and does his thing with the tiolet-cassette. This mostly achieved while wearing what Mum calls "murderer gloves" to protect the bandage on his hand (thin disposable rubber neoprene gloves). It's all a bit Hallowe'en.
Mum's injury comes as she comes from the hair cut down to the barge and misses her footing hopping aboard, falling on her back and elbow across the deck, the fore-horse and the leeboard irons. Her new coat is undamaged outside but gets a smear of blood inside from a bashed elbow. She is shaken and mildly whip-lashed but is a brave soldier. She is fed tea and made to sit down in the galley to recover.
Back at the caravan we are visited by Dave B and Mrs Dave again, who come down to see an old derelict barge, the SB Gwynronald which is moored down there, and by 2CV Llew and his mate Derek, who come down to take the 'Kestrel' out for a couple of hours sailing on the high tide. I get taken off for a nice long walk around the Creek bank. Mum cooks a superb chook risotto and Haggis and I get to share out the bone-ends and gristly bits plus the remaining 'gloop' in the pan.
Sunday is easier - pretty much sitting around reading the papers and then a stroll to the Shipwrights pre lunch. Dad has to attend the Minor Injuries Unit to get his wound checked. Lunch is mackerel and cous-cous salad. After that we part, Mum heading back to Diamond's, we back to Pud Lady's in Hastings for our last week of that.