Moret s/Loing - Melun

After a wonderful two-week stay we left Moret-sur-Loing on Tuesday the 30th of June at 10:35AM with a feeling of relief. After all the ‘trembling-problem’ was solved. That’s what we thought but an annoying trembling started almost immediately after departure. So we made a 180 degree turn, informed Moret’s ‘halte fluvial’ about it and called the engineer. Within 35 minutes we returned to the former mooring spot and inspected the suspected area – without too much confidence. Yet we ascertained the welded bracket to form an angle that differs from the original one, causing too much pressure on some pipework and a clamp. The latter had given up… We re-tied a loose (trembling?) pipe to its bracket by cross-wise using two plastic straps, re-started the engine, were satisfied and left again at 11:10AM, without forgetting to tell the engineer to disregard our alarm-call. Before going downstream towards Paris we decided to make a detour upstream and explore La Petite Seine. The name would suggest smal(ler) boats but nothing is further from the truth. Not only did we see a lot of large vessels, it’s rather busy too – sand- and gravel transport mainly. This picture shows a push-tug that just passed us. The backlight changes the water into liquid silver.

Our aim was to reach Bray-sur-Seine because everything we had read was in favour of the place. The shade-offering plane trees next to the mooring, free electricity and water, all part of a supposedly lovely village. Well, we’ve never visited the village. The full length of the 40 meter (133 feet) pontoon was occupied by 3 boats, one of them being ‘Polaris’, furthermore two little cruisers in front of her. All three of them had been with us at Moret-sur-Loing. When ‘Polaris’ arrived there was no boat in sight; a day later a 4th boat breasted up with ‘Polaris’. We, the 5th boat, did the same. So at 6:30PM we found a spot for the night, intimately entwined with ‘Polaris’. Her owners, Hans & Muriel, even realized an extra power-connection. Thanks! We cruised over 40 kilometers (25 miles) and ascended 3 locks (over 8 meters –27 feet- in total). After almost 8 hours of activity and another extremely hot day we felt exhausted.

The next day, Wednesday the 1st of July, we decided not to find out whether the (mooring-)circumstances further upstream were any better. Another important factor for making us turn was the never ending heatwave. Therefore we left at 8:00AM sharp, descended 2 locks and moored at Montereau-Fault-Yonne already 11:40AM. Because of the temperature it was, after that, a combination of installing easy chairs, putting them under a tree, reading a book, drinking a lot and furthermore doing basically nothing.

The upper edge of Montereau’s bridge over the Yonne during sunset. Napoleon was victorious for one last time at Montereau during his 100 days reign. The next battle was his final, at Waterloo. We all know how this battle ended. Can you find Napoleon’s statue on the picture before this one?

We stayed two nights at Montereau and subsequently left on Friday the 3rd. Reveille 7:00AM, when the temperature is still agreeable. We left 8:05AM, descended 2 locks and planned to have an overnight stop at Samois-sur-Seine after a cruise of only 25 kilometers (15,5 miles). Well, that was a disappointment as the only space left was just too short for us. Besides, the present boaters pretended not to see us – as often happens. (You’re on your own, mate!!) So we continued another 8 kilometers (5 miles) and stopped just in front of the next lock, ‘La Cave’ at Bois-le-Roi. The lock keeper gave us permission to moor for one night so we occupied the far end of the waiting-quay, thus diminishing the chance of being in the way of a commercial ship that wants to make an overnight stop. Stopping time 1:15PM. Weather: hot, hot, hot!, according to our logbook.

The view forward shows the lock while a commercial ship is entering it and the waiting-quay, the latter being an excellent opportunity for commercial vessels to have an overnight stop. Later on the last ascending ship stopped in the lock-mouth, at the quay whereupon the traffic light is visible. Another one positioned itself in the mouth of the disused lock at the left hand side. Later on successively three ‘pousseurs’ arrived and moored at the quay-side, breasted up for the night.

The view as seen along the rear of our floating home. Pretty, or what?

We could sit comfortably in the shade, next to our little ship. Life is good…

It did not rain for a fairly long period. So the river is lovely and quiet, hardly no mud is stirred up, more or less everything has settled down. That’s why the water in the Seine (and Yonne too, we’ve seen) has become very (greenish) clear to a degree that the, normally hidden, underwater-parts become visible. May we present to you: the entire rudder-blade, the skeg and the propeller. The propeller has four blades, by the way. We think that the skeg protects our rudder-blade and propeller very well.

When we looked outside the next morning around 7:00AM (‘sevenish’) there was no commercial ship to be seen. The lock opens at 6:00AM, you know. Hard working people that’s what they are, the barge-people (‘les bateliers’). Bois-le-Roi (‘La Cave’) was left by us the next morning, Saturday the 4th of July (Americans!), at 8:20AM. We consider that fairly early… The only lock for that day was the one we moored in front of the former day. We stopped after an incredible distance of 9 (nine!) kilometers (5,6 miles) and moored at 9:48AM at Melun. That’s where we still are – it’s now Sunday the 5th of July. So yesterday we had a working day of only 1 hour and 23 minutes. That’s more than enough nowadays as all clothing sticks to one’s body and one is even wetter after a shower than before!!!

Having made some remarks about the heatwave we end up with a picture of something we’d never have thought would come back: rain. After arrival yesterday (Saturday), a modest bit of rain fell down later that afternoon. It’s a rare sight nowadays, so there’s every reason to offer you a picture of it. By the way, earlier today, Sunday, it rained a bit as well. It’s all evaporated now and our companion for a long period, the sun, is back in its full glory. À bientôt.