Earlier this summer my wife Lilian and I took our annual trip to London to enjoy some of the fabulous West End shows, visit some of the fantastic museums and royal residences, take in a tea dance at the Waldorf hotel and for the first time ever, catch a ride on a Grand Union Canal waterbus from Little Venice to Camden Lock.  Needless to say we had a great time and enjoyed all of it…. but we were still glad when we returned to the relative quietness and calm of the good old North East of England.

At the end of September we enjoyed another weeks holiday, this time in a European country that is quite beautiful, full of history, in the EU and a very interesting place to visit.  One of the local tours we decided to try was a mini cruise on a lake with a stop-off for an hour at a small town on the lake.  It was super and we really enjoyed our day.

You probably wonder why I am I blogging this.  

Well, the waterbus ride in London was on a small narrowboat-type vessel that held about 40 to 50 people, with a 50 minute journey in water that looked like it never got deeper than about 5 metres maximum.  For the most part we could see the bottom of the canal about 1 or 2 meters below the surface and the distance between opposite banks was never more than 12 meters.  However, before we set off on the journey, the lady who was in charge insisted that everyone kept quiet whilst she went through all of the safety information regarding standing up, moving around, the life belts and lifebuoys, what to do in an emergency, etc.  She was very impressive and took her responsibilities seriously for the benefit of all her passengers.

The mini cruise was in a boat that was shorter and wider and held about 30 to 40 people, with about 150 minutes actually cruising round on the lake, which had a maximum depth of about 350 metres, approximately 70 times deeper than the canal and “Oh, yes, I forgot, travelled at least 5 times faster than the water bus”.

Lilian and I and the other passengers were never given any safety instructions about anything!!   

If any readers have any similar experiences of this type of disregard for safety and absolute dereliction of duty by the people in charge of a vessel please get back to me on with the subject FAO JOHNS BLOG.