27th September 2018 – I just got the news the Watergeus will be dry-docked around the 15th October instead of next Monday. Nothing I can change, so I have another week of small stuff I can do aboard my ship.
24th September 2018 – The Watergeus hasn’t moved since a few years. Not very professional. I started undoing the ropes of one neighbour. Her boat is now attached to the wooden support of the canal. I did a small paint job in the engine room and sealed a forgotten hole in the bulkhead. The exhaust of the generator is now also insulated.
At the end of the evening, I welded a broken bracket on my anchor winch. All jobs I should have done in summer time…
22nd September 2018 – While my museum was open, I put some more stuff out for the visitors. My parents found some old Sailor equipment in their garage. I must have dropped it there years ago…. It is a nice addition to the collection.
16th September 2018 – Call it a mission impossible to clean my workshop aboard Tordino. Next week, there is a garage sale. I have plenty of stuff I will never use (again). I loaded everything in boxes and brought it to my parents.
In the afternoon, I did some smaller jobs aboard the Watergeus.
15th September 2018 – I wasn’t expecting the engine to run or even to see the Aquarel (now Marie-Louise) moving when I called the owner. They left Amsterdam when I called and we arranged to meet them in Huizen.
I arrived a little earlier then expected, but managed to take some great shots from the top of the harbour entrance. There were no words to describe how I felt. We talked for some time with the owners, went on board and had a look in the engine room and hold.
15th September 2018 – Two years ago, I was in Ihlow to pick up a friend’s barge. There was a museum, but it wasn’t open.
Today I drove over 1200km to visit the museum. It was worth it! A big collection of models, documents and objects. It was a mixture of inland shipping, passenger ships, tugs and Navy vessels. I spent more then two hours watching most of it. I should go back to see it a second time.
There were no boats at the yard, so I decided to call the new owner of the Aquarel to see if they were around in Amsterdam. I had to drive there to get back anyway….
14th September 2018 – 65 books arrived, all about Dutch sailing barges. It is a great addition to my Library aboard Tordino. It might take some time to add them to the inventory.
10th September 2018 – Preparing the Watergeus for the yard is more then just filling up the tanks and getting the right tools aboard. I let the engine run with the shaft on for about two hours. Temperature was fine and never got over 80°C.
While the engine was running, I cleaned the wheelhouse. It was a storage unit for the last couple of years.
9th September 2018 – We had Open Heritage Day (Open Monumentendag) aboard Tordino. This is the second time we’ve done it. Last year was a great success. This year, the city decided in the end not to help, so we did it by ourself. With 391 visitors, we can’t complain!
People came from Holland, France and of course Belgium. A mixed group of people. I sincerely wish to thank Haike and my parents for making this day work out!
8th September 2018 – I went shopping for small tables in second hand shops. I walked out with one table and two frames from the Belgian Navy.
In the afternoon, I finished hanging objects and cleaned the ship. Everything should be ready now.
4th September 2018 – I’ve started on Tordino, taping the frames. Later in the evening, I drove to Aalter to help with my neighbours. A diver came to check the cooling unit under the water line of the ship. Everything was clean; a bit of a disappointment. Now we have no idea what might cause the engine not to cool down. The only thing left might be a broken pump….
To be continued, somewhere next week.
3rd September 2018 – The plan was to finish Tordino for Open Monumentendag. The object I got last weekend were mounted. Behind some paintings I put tape to make sure they wouldn’t loose if another idiot of a skipper is running with waves behind his ship.
Later that evening I went back to my neighbour who was still in Aalter. We tried some more, but there is still no water coming out of the engine. We decided: no water = no sailing. We will call a diver for tomorrow.
2nd September 2018: We moved Tordino closer to land in the early morning. Therefore we had to move the two other barges a bit more ot the front.
Till lunchtime, we managed to disassemble the whole cooling system. It was cleaned and put back together. There was sadly enough, still no water coming out of the engine.
A small trial journey was done, and the engine was still fine. We left Beernem for Aalter, but after two kilometers, the engine started steaming. The next ten kilometers, I was busy filling the engine with water trying to cool her down…
1st September 2018 – Today was a busy day. I left Bruges in the early morning heading for Holland. The old skipper of Tordino invited me. I had an old box aboard the ship that belonged to his grandfather. It is now back in the family. He gave me plenty of photos and objects of Tordino and his previous ship. Valuable items for my museum. Objects with a (hi)story!
On the way back, I stopped in Vreeswijk at the museum shipyard. There I met another skipper of Tordino.
In the evening, my neighbours tried moving their boat. It was stuck in the mud and had no cooling. With Tordino, we managed to get her of the mooring and put her alongside another neighbour. The rest of the evening was spent working on the engine.
31st August 2018 – While my parents painted the outside of the bow, I continued labeling the museum objects and hanging the last paintings. I’m happy with the result.