Sunday, 16 December 2012

Last Minute Christmas Present Idea

If you are interested in reading more about living on a barge, then you should read Watery ways by Val Poore. It it a cracking read and would make a great Christmas present. Below is a review of the book taken from SunPenny blogspot. I can't quite work out how to repost, but if you go to the link you can see the full interview with more pictures.


About 'Watery Ways'

Trading life in the fast lane of Johannesburg for that of Rotterdam's serene Oude Haven, Valerie Poore packs all her worldly possessions aboard the historic Dutch barge, the Hoop, and sets about rebuilding both the boat and her life after divorce – and rediscovering herself and her own capabilities in the process.

Along the journey of renovation she is joined by an array of characters, including two dogs and a rather adventurous cat, a smiling but absent-minded ‘landlord’, a quirky friend and confidante, and an olde worlde charmer whose mastery at the helm wins more than just her respect. Before long Val has to learn to cope with the strenuous demands of acting as Skipper's Mate during numerous nail-biting adventures – frequently with hilarious effect.

When the Hoop, her rented home, is sold, Valerie relishes the new challenge of hunting down the Vereeniging, another picturesque barge aboard which she builds herself a new home and learns that, when life on the waterways is threatened by rust and insurance critics, it is those who band together to help who make the lifestyle so worthwhile.

Valerie’s touchingly sincere story is one of discovery and friendship, endurance and love and, most importantly, never allowing the landlubbers to get you down!

About Valerie Poore

Valerie Poore was born in London, England, and after completing her degrees in English, History and French, and a further course in the conservation and restoration of museum artefacts, she worked for a furniture restoration company until the birth of her first daughter. She lived a life of ‘self-sufficiency’ on a smallholding before going to South Africa in 1981 with her husband and very small children, where they lived on a farm in Natal (subject of her first book, African Ways). She currently lives on a barge in Rotterdam – a rather special lifestyle.


  1. On the recent Travel Channel show about Extreme Houseboats there were some barges included. Looks like an interesting book. - Margy

  2. Good read - Val has been moving forward in leaps and bounds with her writing in the past few months. Well done to her and wishing her every success in the coming year!

  3. Thank you for telling me about this book.I have read quite a few books about living and travelling on boats. On my list of things to do is to go to Amsterdam and stay on a boat!
    Why do you want to visit Herford in Germany,did you used to live there?
    Sarah x

  4. Wow! I wasn't expecting this when I saw you'd done a new post. Thank you from the humble depths of my heart, Fran. Big, big hugs and lots of love to you and yours for Christmas and 2013 xxx

  5. Margy - I am going to try on YouTube to get Extreme Houseboats. I would be interested to see it. Thank you xxx
    Janys - val writes very well, I love her style. I will put a link on to your website soon, as your crafty things are really lovely xxxx
    Sarah - I was born in Herford when Dad was doing his National Service. I haven't been back since I was a year old xxx
    Val - you are very welcome and it is well deserved xxx

  6. need to see if I can get it from Amazon, sounds like a great book.