The second lock we had to climb that day -‘Courchelettes’, 4,95 meters (16,5 feet) deep, still very close to Doaui- obviously was cleaned and painted not very long ago which gives the opportunity to explain something about the way some locks are to be handled. When a lock is fairly deep, like this one, there are different ways to keep a ship in position. The first one is to use a long rope and attach it to a bollard on the edge of the lock wall, as just visible on the right upper side of the picture. That might work when descending. Even when ascending, although the rope-handler has to climb out of the lock first, put the rope around the bollard and climb back onto the ship. Time-consuming and dangerous. Then there are the bollards inside the lock’s wall, offering the opportunity to raise or lower the position of a rope of normal length – and, when needed, use two ropes of normal length to execute a ‘leapfrog-system’. The third and most easy system is offered by the presence of floating bollards, like inside this lock. Only one normal rope can be used and the bollard goes up and down with the level of the water. Pure luxury! When ascending a deep lock equipped with only bollards on top of it, most of the time a lock keeper picks up the (long) rope with a hook. That helps a lot, obviously. We use one rope as a spring and keep the ship in position on the engine, unless a strict lock keeper tells us to use two ropes and switch off the engine. This happened only two times since we arrived in France in September 2012. So ‘our’ system works 99,9% out of a 100.