Friday, September 09, 2016

Busy, busy, busy!

As we sat in bed drinking tea and doing our daily crossword this morning, we were passed by several boats going towards Atherstone. Our way. It looked like it was going to be a busy day. Eleven locks to ascend, with several boats ahead of us.
In fact, "busy" is a misnomer. When a canal is busy, much like a road, the individual might actually spend a lot of time doing little or nothing. And after we'd driven the mile to Bradley Green services, and a further mile to Atherstone Bottom Lock, we found it busy. With lots of people doing nothing. There was a queue above and below the lock. We were fourth in line at the bottom, with more boats arriving behind us. One up, one down, one up, one down, one...
By the time we'd done two locks and travelled two miles from our overnight mooring, it was 1:00pm. And we'd started at 10:00am! And so it continued. Of course, it's not nearly so bad to be on a busy canal as it is to be on a busy road, because people on roads are generally in a hurry, and people on canals are usually not. And we got time to meet people, to chat, to wash the boat...

After lock 6, we stopped to have lunch and to shop at a nearby Co-Op. When we got back to Kantara it was about 4:00, and we seemed to have the locks to ourselves, so our ascent the rest of the way was unimpeded. We had the added benefit of a couple of boats coming down, and leaving the locks ready for us, and it wasn't long before we arrived at Top Lock.

Beyond Atherstone and Mancetter, we moored overnight at a secluded spot past bridge 35.

We'd travelled about 5 miles in 7½ hours. Busy, busy, busy!

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