"We're lucky because we sold up and don't owe anybody anything, which is a big thing in these times. We live on our boat, Persephone, and I'm a marine engineer with my own business called Pegasus. I've been doing this job for 10 years now and making a living from work I get from other boaters along the canals. There aren't many engineers around on the water, and it's even harder to find a good one. At the moment I work between Nantwich and Braunston. We're travelling on to Atherstone tomorrow, but we're making the best of this spot at Tixall Wide today because it's such a lovely day, and this is such a lovely place to be.
I've always been a boater. I was at sea on tugs and trawlers, and that's where I learnt my trade. We've got another boat down in Bristol. She's a 32ft Tinkerbell yacht.
Paula wasn't water inclined at all when we met, so the idea behind getting this narrowboat was to try and get her used to the water so that we could go out on the other one. That plan didn't work because Paula is happy now on water where she can see land either side, and has a boat with an engine. She says, "Forget it!!!" to the idea of being aboard a boat that might roll over in big water.
Lassie is a real boat dog. She's always known boats! She belonged to a friend of ours and spent her days wandering around the boat yard. Our friend unfortunately passed away so Lassie came to live with us. She's getting old now, she's 15, but she still loves our boat life."
Colin & Paula, Tixall Wide, Staffordshire & Worcestershire Canal