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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 23 January 2024


 Love them or hate them (and I hate them) dentists all have to be visited during one's lifetime. A check-up when we returned in December had me jumping for joy when I came away with the 'all clear'. But no sooner had 2 hours passed when a phone call from the receptionist asking me to make another appointment as the routine X-ray showed a problem with one of the bottom molars. Blast!!! So a week later I returned to hear that decay was very present on the root of that molar, and it would need dealing with. I was given options,

  1. Leave well alone, and suffer the consequences of the tooth decaying to the point that a considerable amount of pain would eventually occur.
  2. Remove as much of the decay by drilling a deep cavity in that root and replace with a filling in the hope of saving the tooth for another year or so.
  3. Root canal treatment at a cost or £306.80
  4. Remove tooth and if this was the one chosen, a new tooth denture could be inserted at the cost of £3000!

 A decision there and then was too big a deal, so it was decided I would go home and come back in January having thought over.

So what to do? Not a 100% sure, I couldn't dwell on it too long because something had to be done sooner rather than later, but the thought of loosing another tooth (already have had three out on that side) filled me with dread and 3000 pound for a false tooth.....well that needed no thinking about! Out of the question! Anyway, things happened to keep my mind away from the dilemma because a cold spell hit us just at the wrong time. Mid-January saw the temperatures plummet and overnight a thin layer of ice coated the canal, and as the temperatures plummeted, eventually froze to a thickness of a good 3 cm. We were iced in good and proper and more disturbing the facility block toilet and elsan pipes froze which meant the cassettes couldn't be emptied, no water to flush the contents away and no water to be had.

On FS, we shivered! Temperature gauge read - 9 outside and 12 deg only inside. Oh yes the stove was lit, had a nice roaring fire which normally would have kept us warm but still the problem persisted of the CO alarm going off! 


So even though the heat coming from the stove would normally make inside FS a toasty 21 deg, keeping all the windows open overnight was a must to make sure no gases from the stove would linger and kill us in our bed. Ian decided enough was enough! 

The bathroom inside porthole window!

Looked online to see about a replacement stove, OMG..how expensive? And then there would be the problem of changing our 4" flue fittings to a 5" so before forking out all our hard-earned cash, the first thing to try was let the fire go out, reseal the flue joints and check to make sure the fire rope surrounding both top and bottom door was still doing the job. Ah....it was found the rope around the top door was catching on the inside of the handle, could this be the culprit?

With that sorted, we asked Dan from the boatyard to give us his opinion and possibly put a smoke bomb inside to see if any smoke could be seen escaping. His deduction was there was nothing wrong, other than the small vent lever that can be opened to keep the glass clean, could be allowing gas to escape. His advice was to try and keep it closed to see if that improved the situation. So far it's worked, the alarm hasn't gone off since, fingers crossed it doesn't!

 Today (23rd) I returned to the dentist. My decision....go for the filling option number 2. This meant an injection into the gum right at the back to deaden the nerve. It wasn't that bad, and slowly I could feel changes in the mouth. Told 15 minutes to wait for it to fully work, but by the time I was called back to the chair (a while after) it had started to wear off! Luckily, the dentist checked with a needle to see if I felt anything and when I winced, said I needed a stronger dose and by the tooth itself. So another 15 minute wait! Eventually the treatment started....40 minutes later it was done and not without some pain either! The prognosis is good, drilling most of the decay away worked, and I now wait to see if there is any adverse effect. So far, so good.



Anonymous said...

Hello, I was thinking of you and wondering what was going on, poor yous with so many probems to deal with.
I had a fear of dentists too, due to the the school dentist, having 'gas', fillings and extractions of molars to make room in my mouth. Also an ugly metal brace to straighten my teeth, it's a wonder I've still got some left. Now I've got a lovely lady dentist whom I can discuss everything with and she fixes it, I count myself very lucky!
However you make a super team working together and thinking how to solve every problem that arises.
Well done bothe, the only way is up from now on I hope.
Ann xx

Marilyn, nb Waka Huia said...

I'm glad to see you blogging again, so we all know you are alive - esp with the CO alarm problem ... Good to see that is most likely sorted.

Good on you for getting the tooth sorted, and a good option going for the filling. You need to be putting money aside for your next NZ trip, so don't go wasting it on teeth!

Big hugs,

Ian and Irene Jameison said...

Hi Ann, I think we had the same school dentist because I too had to have 4 teeth out by gas to make room for the rest in my mouth. I can still recollect the experience as I came around from the anaesthetic and to still remember 60 years later, well it was very traumatic!


Ian and Irene Jameison said...

So, Marilyn, I must have had the NZ trip in mind when I chose option 2. (;

Big hugs back

Jo said...

Hello Irene, I'm unsure if a previous comment of mine came to your notice, but several years ago we had a similar problem on Sarah Kate. The stove came with two blanking plates and we chose the top one for our flue. after our CO2 monitor kept going off, It eventually transpired that the rear blanking plate had rusted and gas was seeping out from the edges. We had it repaired and the problem went away.
Jo ex n/b Sarah Kate

Ian and Irene Jameison said...

Hello Jo, yes I did get your previous comment, and thank you for that. Slap my hand for not replying then.
We used to have a back boiler which Ian removed ages ago and our immediate thought was where he blanked it off could be the cause of the gas escaping. Ian resealed all joints, hoping this would resolve the issue. Unfortunately, as stated in my last post, this was not the case, so to get Dan involved was the best thing we did. So far the alarm has stayed silent.


Jo said...

No worries. I was just concerned as it was potentially such a serious problem. Long may your alarm stay silent. Jo

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