I realised that boats have been my downfall. They have ruined me financially and they have seen me through two marriages. Boats are crap. But they are highly addictive.

My first was an ugly but functional Birchwood Continental, on the Medway. The second, a Sailfish 18 on the Severn Estuary at Weston -Super-Mare. And for two years we lived on a Sagar Traditional narrowboat called "Psalter". All of them money pits. All of them quite wonderful. All of them took you to paradise. Aaagh - boats. They drive you crazy. They transport you to heaven, and in the immortal words of Mr Toad,

There is nothing - absolutely nothing - half so much worth doing as simply messing about in boats

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