Afloat: A Memoir
by Danie Couchman
Danie Couchman grew up on the move, her family never staying still long enough for her to say where she’s from. At twenty-five, and living in her seventeenth home, she finds herself drowning in the rush of London life, and makes an impulsive decision: to buy a narrowboat and make it her home.
Surrounded by an eclectic and itinerant community in the uncharted territory of the capital’s urban wilderness, Danie becomes fully immersed in this hidden world. Each day onboard her boat Genesis is an adventure full of disaster and magic. Over five years of living off-grid, nomadic Danie learns to survive the many highs and lows of boat life alone, keeping herself, and her steel home, afloat.
A captivating debut, Afloat is the story of a young woman’s desire to escape an ever more isolated city existence and reconnect with nature, discovering what is important in life.
Danie Couchman’s first book, AFLOAT, about her search for community and adventure aboard a narrowboat on London’s waterways, was published by Quadrille in April 2019. Danie studied Broadcast Journalism, and won Broadcaster of the Year at the Guardian Student Media Awards in 2008. Having begun her career as a local radio reporter and newsreader, she has worked as a TV continuity writer/announcer and voice-over artist in London for the past ten years. As a writer she has contributed to the Canal & River Trust’s magazine Waterfront and wellbeing publication The Simple Things.
Danie was born in Germany and has lived in Belgium, Ireland and England in seventeen houses and three boats. After six years of living on London’s canals and rivers she’s recently settled on land close to the River Dart in South Devon. Danie enjoys wild swimming, cooking, and slow adventures with her dog, Mango.
By: Danie Couchman
Narrated by: Danie Couchman