Gerardin Travels        

Approaching a dutch lock.

Travelling on the Waal, commercial waterway

on our way south to France.

These ships were BIG and moving so fast

that they created a wake on the river.

We much preferred travel on the canals. Fall

was showing its colors.

The interior during our journey.

Table and chairs from Ikea.

Our trusty porta-pottie. More on how the

interior looked.

Our "kitchen" - a 2 burner camping stove,

camping reefer, and bottles of water.

Our wheelhouse and what we had for the

long journey.

Fall on the Belgian canals.

Frost starting to appear in the late afternoon.

Days were getting shorter.

Late afternoon frost made the small pontoons

slippery.

Morning and icy lines and decks.

Frozen lines made it difficult in the locks in

the mornings. Our lines are black!

Approaching a lock in the morning.

The frost and ice greeting us every morning

inside and out.

The quai at Toul

JoLi' Folie at Toul

Journey Pt. I

        Welcome! 2012 2011 2010 2009 2008 2007 2006 2005 2004 2003 2002 2001 France JoLi' Folie Intro Journey Pt. I Thanksgiving Journey Pt. II 2001 Net Result 1999-2000 Net Result

Bringing JoLi' Folie

from Koudum, Holland

to her new home in

central France

In late September we

finally got home to California

from Europe. Transatlantic

flights were cancelled for days

after the tragedy.

We had to make a quick

trip to Cartagena to coordinate

Net Result's delivery to

Trinidad. We had tried to sail

Net Result from Cartagena to

Aruba in June, but after 3

weeks of waiting for the

weather to improve in a bay in the north east coast of

Columbia, we were forced to return to Cartagena. Heather

Andrews, a super scottish gal whom we'd met at Pedro

Miguel Boat Club was going to deliver Net Result for us. At

the same time we would be relocating JoLi' to central

France so the conversion work could start during the

winter and allow us to enjoy cruising the canals sooner.

We did a sweep of a camping store and Ikea for some

basics that we'd need during the journey.

During the journey we had NO water, NO heat, NO

insulation, NO electricity, NO plumbing... NO NOTHING.!

After a great deal of delay from the seller in having

the barge ready for us, we finally departed Koudum on 15

Oct. Our hope was to reach our destination in France

before Thanksgiving so we could be present for the annual

family gathering.

Off we went with necessary charts and almanacs. Of

course, in Holland the required manuals onboard are ONLY

in dutch. Not much use to us, non-dutch speaking people.

We had never transited a lock in europe. We had transited

the Panama Canal and read plenty of books on the subject.

Plus, Joe had received his license for piloting a vessel

larger than 15m.

The waterways in Holland are so much different than

Belgium and France. Big, BIG ships, and locks and rivers

to match their size. Traveling on the Waal we felt we were

a little VW beetle on a freeway during rush hour. After

about a week - 10 days it started to get cold and frost

started forming inside on the bare steel. We needed to

make the furthest way each day so we pressed on in the

ice cold. By mid-day the interior was "raining" from the

interior frost starting to melt.

Once in Belgium and France the lock-keepers became

friendly and sympathetic and helped us immensely each

day working us as far as light would enable us. And

making sure we were safely moored in the evenings

before they left us. Many mornings we needed to break

the ice that surrounded the barge during the night prior to

getting underway.

We realized we would not make it to St. Jean de Losne

in time for us to return home for Thanksgiving, so we

made arrangements with the mayor in Toul to leave JoLi'

at the town quai while we went home for our annual

Thanksgiving family gathering in Sanger.

 

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