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Cupholders, Curtains and Counting my blessings

Curtains, cupholders and counting my blessings

Location: Inside my boat

You know that sometimes the smallest things can make the biggest difference to how you feel about something. Well something like that happened to me. I was talking to my boss about my lack of cupboard space and the next time we went to B&Q’s he got me some hooks which he then screwed in to the ceiling as cupholders. You would not believe the difference that it makes. Physically there is now more cupboard space as the mugs were taking up quite a lot of room. The real difference was mentally, that was amazing. It felt like a real weight had been lifted off my mind. One that I was not even aware that I was carrying. The utter relief that I felt as they were put up was beyond price. Something I never expected to feel about 10 hooks.

My boss was very good, he measured the space that I had above the sink between the two cupboards and worked out how many hooks would fit in and still look good. Then he measured up and spaced them all evenly along in two straight lines. He also had a spare hook which he put in to the wall by the window so I could hang my little saucepan on it, keeping that out of the way as well.

Now I have ten cups swinging above my sink and all the space that they took up in my cupboard is now available for other stuff like sugar and dried milk. They look good there, they are out of the way and they are easily accessible. What more could you ask for?

Most of the mugs that I have put on the hooks are large plastic mugs that I can use to heat stuff up in the microwave, so they would take up a lot of floor space in the cupboard. Putting these hooks up has meant that I have over half a cupboard now free to put other stuff in (like food supplies).

Who would have thought that ten cup hooks would make such a difference to someone’s state of mind?


Here is the first one up


Here are the first five all swinging away

Now there have been few other transformations in my boat that have bought a similar level of relief. One has been fixing my curtain rails so that I can open and close my curtains. I had them fastened with drawing pins in the four corners to start with. When I first got the boat there were large curtain rails sticking out about an inch and with sharp edges that constantly scratched my arm as I was going past. So I took them down and made new curtains. I made a tube in the top so that I could thread some net curtain wire through the tops and the bottoms to hold them in place.

It took weeks for me to find some net curtain wire as the shops were constantly out of stock. I went to Homebase and they were out of stock, but would be in soon, then I went to B&Q and they were out of stock, but would be in soon. So I went back later in the week and both were still out of stock (luckily I go a few times a week anyway for my job as a builder’s mate). Every time I went for the next few weeks they were still out of stock and I was getting increasingly frustrated.

Then when I finally got some (B&Q won if you are interested) I found that my pliers were not strong enough to cut the wire (grrr, note to self get stronger pliers). So I had to wait until my boss had time to come down so that I could use his tools to cut the wire and fix the hooks (he still decided to drill the holes in to the window frame for me as he said that ‘I was liable to sink the boat drilling holes’). When they were finally up and I could open and close them I was so happy. I must have looked a bit demented spending half an hour just opening and closing the curtains on the boat with a big smile on my face.

Living on a canal boat really teaches you to be glad of the little things in life. This is how I aim to live my life. Enjoying the little things and live life aware of the moment that I am in. I have heard this called the mindfulness philosophy but I call it the thankfulness philosophy. Just finding things to be thankful for each day. Counting my blessings is easy when I am down on the boat and I feel a great sense of peace there. All the little things that I do to try to make it better only make counting my blessings easier.

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