Wednesday, October 10, 2012

Heading for Braunston

I've been in touch with Roy at Days Afloat, asking him to shave a sliver off the edges of the foredeck seats/locker lids he made for us, since they have now swollen in the wet weather and don't fit together any more. He's happy to do this for us, of course, so I said we'd stop off at his place on the way past. Next stop Braunston then.

Wednesday had good boating weather, with early white cloud breaking to give us lots of sunshine, and the early chill giving way to much warmer temperatures. I spoke to a guy yesterday who had been out for a cruise with his wife back in April. I can't remember where they started from, but they were out for 10 weeks, and their turning point was on the Llangollen Canal. In their 10 weeks, they had just 10 days on which it did not rain! With that in mind, we really cannot complain about the rain we've experienced on any of the occasions we've been out this past year. It has rarely been so bad as to stop us from travelling.

From our overnight mooring, we moved on up to The Wharf Inn where we took on water, and bought bread and milk from the tiny backroom shop in the pub.

We were delighted to meet for the first time Mike and Marian on NB Duxllandyn, fellow moorers at Yelvertoft. They are travelling to Banbury, and are out until the end of the month, after which they will be having the boat hull blacked at Debdale Wharf, the place we are thinking of taking Kantara for the same job. We look forward to meeting up with them at the marina, to swap stories and experiences. Mike's a retired teacher, too, so we'll have to try hard not to talk "shop"! Marian is a retired Exams Officer in a school, an office in which I stand in awe! These people do an impossibly difficult job, and I have always had enormous respect for those I've known.

Leaving Fenny Compton, we got onto the most twisting part of the canal again. It was very quiet; we passed just one or two other boats. At Napton Top Lock, however, we found six boats ahead of us, queuing to descend the flight of seven locks. Only one passed us going up the flight, which meant that all but one of the seven were full when we came to them, and needed to be emptied before Grace could take Kantara in to them. This slowed our journey significantly, and gave me lots of extra exercise! Meanwhile, poor Grace suffered from Kantara's exhaust fumes in the locks, probably simply because of the direction of the wind at each one.
Having heard talk of impending heavy rain and thunderstorms, we moored shortly after the bottom lock as heavy skies slid in above us. I have a feeling we won't be getting to Braunston tomorrow.

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