Tuesday, January 30, 2007

Boating on the river Line

A perpetually engaging site in the field by the river Line to the north west of Whatlington Road is the small rowing boat called 'Lucky', beached on the grass.

What is she used for, I wonder. The river at this point is only two or three metres wide and someone rowing would find the oars reached the banks. Also there is nowhere much to go. Perhaps the vessel is used to access trees and bushes that need cutting back, or to rescue livestock that fall in.

Whatever the case the boat, the water, the alders, the willows and the peaceful countryside remind me of The Piper at the Gates of Dawn chapter in the Wind in the Willows: "They got the boat out, and the Rat took the sculls, paddling with caution. Out in midstream, there was a clear, narrow track that faintly reflected the sky; but wherever shadows fell on the water from bank, bush, or tree, they were as solid to all appearance as the banks themselves, and the Mole had to steer with judgment accordingly."

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