If anyone is interested at 4-30 this morning the moon was high in the sky, the mist was rising off the canal, there was no wind and it was a bit chilly outside. Magic woke up, went down the front of the boat and woofed, last time this happened we ended up with a mess on the floor, so I was up, overalls on ready to let him out, what did he do, have a big drink, he also barks if he is thirsty. Once full of water it was down the towing path for several wee’s before he headed back under our bed and went back to sleep.
We set off at 10 am, the pound had come up since last night and we had drifted in against the side, now the ropes were slack and every passing boat caused a bump. I considered filling with water at the Cropredy services but as there was a boat already there and we met a boat that had just come down the locks we pushed on.
As we left Cropredy lock another boat pushed off ahead of us and started to come towards the lock so we were able to leave the gates open. As we departed I spotted this little chap enjoying a snail for breakfast.
The site of the proposed new Cropredy Marina is a sea of blue at the moment full of Linseed wavering in the breeze. As we approached the end of the straight I just caught sight of the back end of a boat ahead of us, as we came to Broadmoor Lock they were just leaving but there was another boat waiting to come down. The whole day went like this, meeting a boat just leaving a lock and another approaching as we left. We caught up with the boat ahead again at the bottom of the Claydon Flight, they went in just before we arrived and by the time we were ready to go up to the lock there was a boat coming down, again this was repeated all the way to the top of the flight. We had to close the top gate as there was no other boat in sight but a hire boat arrived before we got as far as the bridge.
The cottage at the top lock is selling organic lettuces, green or red, this week for 80p each and they are a nice size so we bought one.
As we came into Fenny Compton, stopped at the Marina having their lunch was the Hotel Pair that we have been seeing all week. We stopped for a chat with the skipper to see how things were going, I would imagine he had fun this afternoon pulling them round the bendy section of canal between fenny and Marston Doles. We expected to see him mooring opposite us tonight at the Engine Arm but there is no sign of him.
The visitor moorings through Fenny Compton were all full with even a hire boat moored on the water point (what’s new) so we decided to carry on back to our home moorings. As we chugged along I spotted my first Grass Snake of the season swimming happily along the off side bank and then Diana took over steering for a while wile I went below, I was aware of the boat not just slowing down to pass moored boats but stopping so I looked out of the front doors. There hard on the wrong side on a right angle bend was a hire boat, tight against the off side piling and going slowly backwards. When he saw us he stopped and waved us by, so we passed on the wrong side, as we went out of view he was still going backwards and forwards on the outside of the bend against the piling. He only needed to put his boot against the piling and push ether end out and he would have been away, but they just stood on the back deck going first forward and then back.
I didn’t photo any planes flying over today but I did get this one at Marston Doles on the ground, just before we stopped to fill with water, again all the moorings were full. Just as we had finished filling a boat came up the lock, Diana went to give them a hand which was handy as both the bottom paddles were still open. We met a second boat between the two Marston Doles locks and a third as we left so it was quite a good day for locking. We are now back on our home moorings for the night before heading back to Suffolk.
We have done 146 miles 63 narrow locks and 20 broad locks 78 engine hours