"It must be cold on your boat" people say. "On the contrary; it's far warmer than any of my old homes" I reply, smugly and snugly. The wood burner keeps the inside toasty warm, even when the canal freezes over, as it did last week.
It was cold wandering around taking pictures of the frost, of course, but back on board, I was warming up and pointing my iPhone at a bullock on the other bank ("Isn't it cold living in a frozen paddock?" we asked a local bullock) ...when a small black creature bounded into shot. It sat there on the ice gawping up at the bullock; then noticed me and turned tail, describing a lively sine wave along the ice back the way it had come.
As you see, mink avoid getting cold paws by running several inches above the ice.
This spotting explained the spraint I found under the bridge a few days previously...
...which was smaller, messier and less glistering with fish scales than this otter poo we saw on the Thames last year