Tuesday, June 06, 2006

Grown old gracefully

One of the things we took for granted when I was a kid was the tak- tak- tak- tak- tak of barges on the way to deliver their freight somewhere in our country, latticed with waterways. It was a matter of a few years before the lorries took over, and the only answer of skippers was to go bigger and bigger.
Alle and Marja, fellow harbour dwellers, own an impeccably restored barge that is still equipped with one of those slow-revving hot-bulb Kromhout diesel engines.
They are smokey and noisy, but what a show stoppers these engines are as well.

Still it must be realised that the engine was not installed before 1926, after Verandering had been around for twenty years as a sailing barge.

Clicking on the image below takes you to a QuickTime movie of Verandering.

If you don't hear the engine I suggest you download a more recent version of QuickTime.

Anyone seeing a similarity to Pete Townshend's floating studio has a point, they are both of the tjalk type.


VallyP said...

When I hear that engine, I couldn't wait to rush out and see what it was...and I wasn't the only one! I saw so many faces emerging from their barges to watch this lovely scene...I know I'll miss my old lady when she's gone..if only for all the attention!

Dale said...

Dear Koos

I can hear the sound as you say it!
Tak Tak Tak...

Is that from only having one or two cylinders?

I will have to wait until tomorrow to watch the clip. As you know, my home computer won't play it - but the one at work does!

Your lives are so different to my land/mountain locked way of life!
I feel more comfortable surrounded by my beloved mountains than in the wide open, although I lived on the prairies for several years.

Good Night to you.


Anne-Marie said...

The barge looks like an old sabot from the angle of the video. I love the sound and the little puffs that come out.

I hope my engine works as well after 80 years. :)


gypsy noir said...

what a loverly sound...i think its more of chank chank...marvelous how it has stood the test of time...i love the sound of old steam trains...and old beetles ...ps i left a comment on your mark knoffler/emmylou review...oh and yes gypsydamus predicts good future for you and val...

Koos F said...

Yes Val, we focus on the happy faces, forget about the few crinkly mouths on the towpath who think engine smoke is air pollution... perish the thought.

Hi Dale, hope you liked the moving images. This is a single cylinder (2-stroke, and the bulb needs heating for about 20 minutes to get it starting; no batteries to get it going but compressed air).

Anne-Marie, long live the digital camera (in this case photo cam) so you can distinguish the smoke puffs. Goes back to childhood memories too: wait until a set of smoke rings csme out. I have added a picture of such a sloke ring. This pic is a bit older, taken before Alle and Marja put the pipe in a horizontal position

Gypsy you have a point about the sound. You can use a translation machine, feed it tak tak tak, hit the translate to English button and out comes chank chank chank.


gypsy noir said...

ah yes tak is dutch for chank...but its still wonderful in either language..

elizabeth solaka said...

vallyp said, "When I hear that engine, I couldn't wait to rush out and see what it was...and I wasn't the only one! I saw so many faces emerging from their barges to watch this lovely scene... "
It's so nice to be here where people delight in these beautiful things. It's romance the way romance should be.

I also like Pete, and Macintosh computers, photography, and now I love Dutch Barges. Oh, and Emmylou is quite wonderful, as well. I'm just a big copycat of Koos and Val.

Thanks for the movies. They are great.

jodie said...

Ah, summer in the harbour... enjoy the good weather folks!

Erik-Jan said...

Hi Koos,
Very, very, very, very Nice!!!

Dale said...

Dear Koos

Blogger has been doing its doomsday thing, so I haven't been able to watch the moving pictures.

Is this one called Gandalf?
It is blowing the most beautiful smoke rings...


Dale said...

BTW what fuel do you use?

It must be diesel if you have a bulb to heat it?

...and does it start with a huge bang?!

Dale said...

My apologies Koos, I meant what fuel does the barge in the post use?

jodie said...

Koos... you have mail regarding ftp-stuff


gypsy noir said...

thankyou koos...x...

ian gordon said...

To grow old gracefully. The most admirable quality in anyone/anything. I only hope when I'm that age that the little noises emanating from me are as charming...

"Angeldust" said...

There is something magical about "old" wooden vessels,I would be tempted to run my fingers over it and feel it. Absolutely.

Metalchick said...

Hi Koos,
I couldn't see the image, fortunately I could hear it and now I know what you mean about the sounds it makes.
I'll try to see if I can get the latest Quicktime player and then I'll try again at watching this clip.

Cheryl Ann said...

Hello Koos,
Thanks for stopping by... I do not know where the Telephone story came from but would like to give credit where credit is due. Maybe someone else who reads it will know. BTW, i love your blog site, very informative and fun. Keep up the great work.

Marietta said...

It's like music.
Keith's woodblocks on Magic Bus come to mind.

No, I'm not biased or obsessed.

I, coming from Greece, have a thing for the sound of trehandiria, my dad used to have one. Similar sound, but quicker and not so...musical. Aaaah, nostalgia in the middle of an English, humid night.

Nice chatting to ya, tonight.

Dale said...

Hi Koos!

Re Gypsy's blog...

"You ate fast becoming one of my favourite storytellers."

Put a comma between fast & becoming - takes on a whole new meaning...

LOL Koos, now who has quite the way with words?