Last night as usual the planes suddenly stopped flying over. There was a wedding at the Rowing Club and there music didn’t disturb us, I still managed a poor nights sleep, I don’t know why because it was really quiet.
We were away at ten to eight this morning, the first to leave, but the boat moored ahead of us caught us up while Diana was setting Bray lock for us as it’s DIY outside manned hours.
I had a rain coat on much more than I had it off today with some heavy showers, but it was a good days boating, we had a good run with no big delays at any of the locks and apart from Bray there was at least one lock keeper at each.
I am glad I don’t have to buy my diesel on the Thames as this red diesel which is reduced duty is more expensive than the road diesel I put in the car with full duty. Considering they are buying it at about 70p lt if you include duty at a 40/60% split its a good margin. The petrol is exactly the same as you buy at the pumps. a good 30% mark up. We passed Oakley Court looking very splendid even in the miserable weather. They were setting chairs out for an outside event so I hope the rain held off for them, its been much better this afternoon.
Some of you of a certain age may remember a place called Skindle’s Nightclub in Taplow. it didn’t have the best of reputations but had some great bands play there, I wont go into what the clientele played at, full details at https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Skindles It is now being developed for housing.
Cliveden House looks as imposing as ever as you make your way up Cliveden reach, it also as a chequered past, I wonder if its something in the water supply to Taplow as both properties in Taplow. Another steam boat Alaska was getting ready for her guests at Bourn End, this must be the best looking steam boat in the UK.Below Maidenhead we came upon a Dragon Boat, not something you see every day on the Thames. This one was full of smiling faces. As we came into Maidenhead lock there was a Narrowboat from Fenny Compton who we have shared locks with this trip on the Grand Union, the Lee and now the Thames. At the top of the lock there was another group of canoes waiting to enter the lock to drop down, they must give the lock keepers nightmares. Just think of something going wrong with all of them and half a dozen large cruisers. We decided we would bite the bullet and pay £8 for a mooring in Henley so have moored on the side of the regatta course. I had expected a bloke on a bike coming for the money but he turned up in a water taxi. There has been a regatta going on today between nice wooden rowing boats, some one man and some two. The effect they have on an 18 tonne Narrowboat when they go past is surprising.
19½ miles, 7 locks in 6½ hours