These are the adventures of Andy and Sally Rawnsley on their narrowboat "The Puzzler". We have been living on the boat for over nine years now and are still loving it. Our Ulster born Shih Tzu, Shannon, has grown up, and has taken over the boat! After three wonderful years in Ireland, we transported The Puzzler to The Netherlands, and spent a year there. In 2015 we went southwards, to reach the north of France by June. After glorious weather throughout the summer, we arrived in Roanne in late October, and enjoyed our winter in this friendly port. We cruised extensively in France in 2016, 2017 and 2018, returning to Roanne each winter.

Tuesday, 6 January 2015

20th - 31st December 2014. Christmas in Schagen. Skating and curling on the portable ice rink. A New Year's party at the harbour.

We had a quiet Christmas on The Puzzler. Shannon really enjoyed wearing her tinsel collar, and then opening her presents.

"That did taste good!"

The portable ice rink arrived in the middle of Schagen in early December, and will be here for a whole month.

Inside the marquee they are ready for business, with plenty of skates for hire!
Sometimes the rink is really busy. The push-a-long seals cater for small children, and also for all beginners on the ice. In the evenings this is a real racetrack, with many good young skaters, all going very fast.
After Christmas, there were two evenings for curling competitions. Twenty six teams of four took part on the night when we were watching, in a one end knockout competition. The curling "stones" are made out of heavy wood, and very few competitors got their length right! With little time to practise, and playing only one end, it made it very difficult for them, but that did not matter and they all had a really good time.

After each end the stone or stones nearest to the centre of the house belonged to the winning team, who went on to the next round.
On Oudejaardag, or Old Year's Day, or even New Year's Eve if you are not from The Netherlands, we went to a party in the Harbour Office. All of the harbour masters are volunteers, here in Schagen, and we had a great time.

There are a few resident boaters in Recreativiehaven Schagen, and we were all delighted to be included in the harbour celebrations.

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