Canal Boat Life

There are some neat profiles in today’s Observer of people (couples and singletons) who live on Canal Boats.

Some of you singled out the brief mention of a boat-dweller in Escape Everything! so perhaps this is of interest to you. Their lives are certainly Escapological.

Cheap:

I’m on an army pension and it does not suffice me to live in a flat or a house. I’ve lived on a boat for seven years. Now my rent is cheap, council tax is cheap, it’s cheap living and I can afford it even if I lose all my benefits.

Minimalist:

What do our wardrobes consist of? About 10 pairs of dungarees. Matt wears a waistcoat with a tiny vest underneath in the summer. Large party dresses with netting underneath are a big no-no on a boat because you’d knock everything over, and if you fell in you’d sink. 

Creative:

I use this place to sleep, write, design and then I go to work in my studio. The best bit is being able to have a real fire. It means I can look at the flames and use my imagination to think about what I want to do with the rest of my life, so I don’t need a television.

Green:

Living on a boat forces you to be green. I have two solar panels. Our water is in a thousand-litre stainless steel water tank that we fill up from water points. All the wood we use is reconstituted wood and the electricity is run by batteries – we don’t plug in to the short. I think it’s one of the greenest ways to live.

Independent:

You become aware how much is needed to live and you live a much simpler life. It’s quite liberating.

Doable:

I went on eBay and bought a boat, just like that. 

About

Robert Wringham is a humorist and the editor-in-chief of New Escapologist.

Leave a Reply

Latest issues and offers

1-7

Issues One to Seven

A bundle of our first seven issues. Featuring minimalism, Houdini, Leo Babauta, Bohemianism, Alain de Botton, Sartre, and Tom Hodgkinson. 567 pages. £35.

8-11

Issues Eight to Thirteen

A bundle of our last six issues. Featuring Luke Rhinehart, Flaubert, Mr Money Mustache, part-time work, Will Self, home life, Richard Herring, and E. F. Schumacher. 593 pages. £30.

Issue Thirteen

Our final issue. Featuring an interview with celebrity mortician Caitlin Doughty; Matt Caulfield on zen fool Ryokan; and Reggie C. King on David Bowie and Sun Ra. 122 pages. £7.

Escape Everything!

A hardback guide to scarpering. Essential reading for wage slaves and slugabeds alike. Published by Unbound. 230 pages. £12.