Well hasn't the weather been great this last few days. Summer seems to have finally arrived as we return to the marina at Kings Bromley and, even worse, we 'look forward' to work tomorrow morning. Having said that, the heat today has been really stifling and we're not sure we would be all that comfortable aboard.
Our latest trip finished off with three days of lovely sunshine. Thursday morning we decided to stay put and do some washing and cleaning through the boat before we departed just before midday towards Autherley Junction. We had a really steady cruise following a trip boat from Coven to Hatherton Junction, and then enjoyed an ice cream at Gailey. We moored for the night just above Boggs Lock and enjoyed watching some of Wimbledon and drowning a few maggots.
We decided to leave quite early on Friday morning and try to avoid the powerful sun later in the day. It was a cracking day to cruise with just a little breeze and the locks seemed to be in our favour all day. It was nice to see the renovations of the lock cottage at Deptmore Lock which were in full swing last time we passed two years ago.
Tixall Wide was very tempting, although filling up with boats by 1pm in readiness for the weekend no doubt, but we decided to head for one of our favoured spots below Haywood Lock which we thought would offer some shade. We managed to squeeze between two boats and were moored up before 2pm.
We decided to go and find a bit of shade by the river and took some drinks and chairs with us and watched the world go by and the dogs had a great time in the water cooling off.
|Nice afternoon spot by the River Trent.|
When we returned to Blue Moon we met the owner of nb Kingfisher moored in front of us. We got talking as you do and introduced ourselves etc. It turned out in conversation that he was a single handed liveaboard from Marsworth on the GU. 'Marsworth' we thought. We met a bloke from there last year - a right character who kept us entertained in The Navigation at Bugsworth for hours. It turned out that Dale and Dave were drinking partners in that part of the world. What a small world it is. We had a lovely couple of hours sitting outside the boats chatting (and drinking) and Jasper had great fun playing with Dale's eleven week old puppy called 'Nellie', 'a thoroughbred runt crossed with a collie' as Dale described her. We finished the lovely afternoon with a meal in the Clifford Arms and watched some of the tennis semi final involving Andy Murray until there was a brief power cut !!
We were in no rush to get back to the marina on Saturday - we never are. We said goodbye to Dale and Nellie on Saturday morning as they left about 9am. We took the dogs down to the river for a swim and even had a good paddle ourselves. After applying plenty of suncream, we set off about 10am.
|Dale & Nellie - nb Kingfisher|
Bad timing as we found ourselves waiting for a day boat as it emerged from Haywood Lock and then pulled out behind it. Entertainment at it's best - it's just a shame I wasn't in a position to photograph the carnage it caused. The steerer panicked as a boat appeared towards him and was clearly put off by the long line of moored boats to his offside, although there was ample room to get through. He made the mistake of putting the boat into neutral, thinking it would steer. As we know it won't, but then when he put it back in gear he pushed the tiller the wrong way and headed for the oncoming boat. PANIC - hits neutral again - no response. Points the tiller the other way - no response. PANIC - puts in gear - points tiller the other way (wrong way) PANIC - hits full throttle as a last resort and swings the stern of the boat round almost 90 degrees to collide with the first moored boat on the offside with a resounding thump. The owner of the moored boat quickly appeared and managed to remain relatively calm. A smile and raised eyebrows were exchanged between us and I took the opportunity to make a quick exit down the nearside !!
We were back tied up at Kings Bromley by mid afternoon and the sun was very strong. We wished we could just have carried on past. We have had a great trip and are totally relaxed and refreshed. The Weaver is certainly a place we will return to and it was nice to see the Shroppie and Staffs & Worcs again after a couple of years.
It was also nice to see our pet fish again in the marina (click on link) - next time there will be a hook attached !!
Let's hope that the good weather continues for a good time yet, although not the best for us hayfever sufferers. Roll on September and our next good trip to look forward to.