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In 1977 we hired our first narrowboat from Anglo Welsh at Market Harborough.From that moment our destiny was set. In 2006 we finally purchased our own brand new 57' narrowboat which we named 'Free Spirit'. Our aim is to travel the length and breadth of all the navigable rivers and canals of the UK. This will be our story as it unfolds.

Tuesday, 15 September 2015

A lesson learnt.

The internet... one loves it or hates it but we sure need it in this day and age. So when we found our allowance being eaten up quickly we went on high alert. Our monthly allowance on 3 is 15Gb with a start date around the 27th of each month. Normally this is sufficient for all our needs.  On Sunday, for some unknown reason, I just happened to look at how many Gb we had left.  In just under 2 weeks we had used 10Gb. That was unheard off and we racked our brains as to why. Now our dongle has the capability of showing how much data is being downloaded (and uploaded) for any given day. It was counting up the megabytes at an alarming rate. Ian had his new Samsung phone and we thought this was the reason. So we did an experiment. One by one we switched off phones, Asus tablets and Ian's  computer. The tally had slowed down but still seemed excessive to us. That left just my computer. I made sure all my programs were off and by rights the usage should have stopped. It didn't. In the background many of my programs were interacting with the web. Most were not needed and had been installed on one of the many updates Windows kept throwing at it. Skype we found was the biggest culprit. Even though it was switched off that, as well as other unwanted programs, always appeared on my start up menu.  So now I have disabled the internet from starting when I switch on the computer, Skype has been deleted ( I never use it anyway) and Ian has got rid of any of the' so called' dross that is taking our allowance. The difference is striking. Instead of using nearly 400Mb a day we have got it down to around 100Mb a day. Why we never checked this before I will never know but a valuable lesson on that Sunday had been learnt.

Having stayed put yesterday and with nothing much happening, I didn't really have anything to write home about other then get more and more despondent with the Wyvern hire boats charging past. We were about 50yds from Stoke Hammond lock so you would think they would be throttling back. It made me wonder if they all drive like maniacs in their cars, stamping on the brake and leaving it to late to stop. We had a lot of noise and smoke as they threw the throttle in reverse trying not to hit the side or lock!!! A bit less speed would have done the job nicely.

This morning we teamed up with another Wyvern boat. Never having boated before they took it nice and steady. Trouble was just a tad to steady because foolishly I said they could leave the lock before us and then we did tick over nearly all the way to Fenny. Luckily a dog stop was necessary for their cute dachshund  and we took our life in our hands when they waved us past. The forward, reverse and tiller control was a sight to see and I only just got by before their back end swung out right across the canal. Still we all had to learn and we did give them some locking tips for when the ascend the locks on their way back.

Nice and slow past moored boats but tick over all the way????

Think this is a brilliant sign. Shame it was only on one side of the towpath.
 Fenny Stratford had spaces on the 14 day. Glad about that because Ian has to fetch the car from Nottingham on Thursday. No sooner had we tied and gone inside when a C&RT bod came along on his bike, stopped by our window, got out his i pad and made a note of the licence date and the time we arrived. Talk about super efficient. Shame they can't do the same for the outstanding work needed.
Rain and thunder this afternoon put paid to my fishing so instead  got my head around Word and wrote this  post instead of using blogger. Less time on the net at present means we won't go over our allowance for this month and to copy and paste only takes seconds. With still 2 weeks to go and only 5Gb left we have to be careful.

Luckily we moored opposite a boat that was a Kingfisher magnet.

And on route

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