Friday, 18 February 2011

Fender Kickers and Time Wasters!

Well what can I say, Dawn and I are absolutely gutted. Things have been very quiet on the blogging front and there has been a very good reason why. I am a simple Black Country bloke and my view on life is very simplistic, most of this stems from my upbringing and my Father who taught me many things like ‘if something costs a penny and you only have a ha’penny you can’t afford it’ or ‘if something not bust, don’t fix it’

Back in September 2010, I reported on my blog THINGS THAT BECAME APPARENT PART 2 and about the decision to sell Minnow well from just after then until earlier this week we have been negotiating the sale and what follows is an account of the proceedings and from this you will see why we are gutted. I know its a bit longwinded but I feel this is part of the ‘healing process’

On 1st October, the day after putting it on my blog, I received an enquiry off a girl and her partner, the owner of a boat hire Company, stating that she was ‘seriously interested’ in buying Minnow, this then started us off on what I can only describe as a long drawn out wild goose chase!

7th Oct Asked if they could come over and have a look at Minnow and also if we could take her out, perfectly reasonable request so we agreed to take her out for a couple of hours up to the boat turn at Handsacre and back.

9th Oct Took Minnow out for a two hour ‘jolly’ with both of them taking turns on steering.

11th Oct Received an E mail requesting a second viewing and an out of water survey. Perfectly reasonable request.

12th Oct E mailed them and arranged to make a detour from our return journey from Norbury Junction and instead of going back to our mooring we went up Wolverhampton 21 and round the Wyrley & Essington round to the Cannock Extension Canal.

6-7th Nov Moved Minnow round to Cannock Extension Canal.

16th Nov Had Email off them stating that Minnow was on dock this week and that it was going to be surveyed.

25th Nov They asked for the keys to Minnow so they could go and have another look over her. Strange request!

26th Nov E mailed them informing her that it is a combination lock so no keys, but agreed to meet them up at the boat for them to look over and us to check out boat.

28th Nov Met them up at Minnow and they had another thorough look over her.

1st Dec Made an enquiry to Terry Bellamy about his large Woolwich motor boat he had for sale Darley, and arranged to go over on Sunday and have a look at her. (Love at first sight)

5th Dec Went to look at Darley and told Terry that we were definitely interested but explained the situation over selling minnow.

6th Dec They sent me an Email making an offer on Minnow (below the asking price)

7th Dec Telephoned Terry and explained that I had been made an offer for Minnow and that was what I could offer him for Darley and he went away to think about it.

8th Dec Terry telephoned me and we agreed on a verbal offer for Darley.

19th Dec E mailed them accepting their offer for Minnow

21st Dec Received an Email off them asking if they, along with his engineer from the boat yard could strip the Bolinder down remove the piston, de-coke engine and piston then re-assemble the engine, while I supervised them. Also that they would not hand over any money until I had showed him .Strange request.

23rd Dec Sent them an E mail agreeing to supervise them stripping the engine and also requesting for us to be able to take all our personal belongings off minnow. I also asked them to comfirm that theirs was a confirmed offer. (Copy pasted below)

“What we are really looking for, I suppose, is confirmation of a committed offer from yourselves, even if money doesn't change hands until later, as we have still got to confirm our offer for Darley which we of cause can not until we know Minnow is sold, my fear being loosing Darley if Terry gets another/better offer, as well as I think it is unfair on him to keep him hanging on.”

27th Dec Recieved an E mail off them confirming their offer and stating

“Sorry for the delay in responding, I only just caught up with my partner. It is a confirmed offer, but he, not knowing anything about bolinders (or even boats come to that) would like to make sure the engine is ok, Strip it down, rebuild it, under your supervision before handing over any money. They will do the work on the engine, you just observe, advise and teach.“

18th Jan Sent Email to them asking for access to the moorings so we could remove all our things.

20th Jan E mail arranging to go over to Minnow on Sunday to remove personal items off Minnow

23rd Jan Went down to Minnow and they looked over her again while we packed things away.

29th Jan I Went down Minnow and removed half of our belongings bedding, clothes, food,etc,etc. Loaded car full and took them home.

30th Jan We Went down Minnow and removed the other half of our belongings loaded car full and took them home.

1st Feb Received Email off them asking if after stripping the engine and re-building it could they take Minnow out down to the winding hole, and also for my bank details for the money to be paid into my account by BACS.

5th Feb They sent me an Email stating.

“He has just asked me to send you a quick e-mail. He wont speak to his accountant until Monday and wanted to let you know that the money will be with you by Wednesday at the very latest, he just needs advising on the best way to pay for her. If he can go through the company he can transfer it Monday evening.”

6th Feb Spent day down at Minnow stripping, de-coking and re-building her Bolinder. Started her up and found a water leak on the expansion box so I would not take her out boating.

7th Feb Received a telephone call off Terry about Darley and were we definitely interested as he had someone else interested. I told him that we were having Darley and explained about the money being transferred to me by BACS by Wednesday 9th and that as soon as it had I would be paying him for Darley.

13th Feb Went down to Minnow and fixed the leak on the expansion box then started the Bolinder and took her down to the winding hole just down the canal then we went for a jolly up to Pelsall Junction and back with all three of them taking turns in steering her and changing gear etc. On return to the mooring I changed the locks on Minnow and handed the keys to them.

No hint as to what was coming

15th Feb Recieved an Email from them to see if I had a photograph of Minnows head gasket as they had found somewhere in Oldbury that could make a small batch for them. Emailed her back stating that, Unfortunately I did not have any photo’s of the head gasket.

So still no hint of what was coming!

17th Feb Sent an Email to him at 8 15am stating.

“Hi (person) Dawn and I were expecting the money to have been transferred by now, is there a problem.”

17th Feb As I had not heard anything by that evening, I sent an Email to the girlfriend stating.

“Hi 'the girlfriend', I sent (him) this Email this morning, but as yet have not heard anything so I have sent this copy to you. Could you let us know what's going on.”

Malcolm Edge to him

show details 8:15 AM (10 hours ago)

“Hi (person) Dawn and I were expecting the money to have been transferred by now, is there a problem.”

Blossom & Dawn.

18th Feb Eventually received an Email off him stating:

“Hi Blossom,

I have been agonizing over Narrowboat Minnow since the cleaning of the head, the leak and my difficulty starting her. I try to convince myself that I can handle her, but, the more I think about it, the more I realise that I can't. So it is with great regret and many apologies that I must inform you at this very late stage that I have had a change of heart. I'm sorry. I will arrange for the keys to be returned this weekend. Regards”

Well what can I say, and this has been going on for the last 6 months! now you probably all understand why Dawn and I are so angry. Now I have the unpleasant task of telling Terry that we are unable to have Darley even though we have made him a confirmed offer. All I hope is that Terry does not think the same of me for I am certainly not a time waster and would not have made him the offer if they had not already confirmed their offer for Minnow. Finally they can both look out if ever Dawn (The Rottweiler) meets up with them again when were out and about for all along she had a suspicion about his genuine interest saying he was a time waster from the very beginning and thought he was only trying to impress his girlfriend and was leading us on and putting new obstacles in the way as things progessed.

And so to ‘whats next’. Don’t know, for now we have got to find another mooring for Minnow as we have told our previous mooring to stick their £30 per month un announced increase where the sun don’t shine making it over £2300 per year for nothing more than a wharf to tie up against with no facilities. We have also got to take all ‘the basics’ back to Minnow before we can move her, and then there is still the question of what we will do with her for as i said in that previous blog, old fools and Bolinders so we either try and sell her again or take the Bolinder out and put something else in which Dawn can handle. I am sure time will tell but for now its good bye to my Big Woolwich and my Petter PD2 so till next time, there’s always some things you would:-

Love to bang ‘em about