Tuesday, July 18, 2017

Limping back...

I didn't mention that when we broke down on Saturday, a group of women came along the towing-path and immediately showed great concern over our plight. I was just stealing myself to launch off the side of the boat, over tall stinging nettles and onto an invisible bank at the time. After my breathtaking jump and perfect landing, I looked up into the face of Jane. Jane and her husband Michael are old friends from when we lived in St Albans. Michael was our minister at the Baptist church there, but had left to go to Poland to teach in 2005, and returned four years later to take up the pastorate of Rugby Baptist Church, where we met up again in 2012. They live in Hillmorton, quite close to the place where we broke down.

Jane and her friends, having been assured that there really was nothing they could do to help, apart from telling us the nearest road bridge for the RCR man to drive to, went on their way. Later, I got a FB message from Michael offering us whatever help we might need; beds for the night, for example.

" I suspect this is not like calling out the AA?" he asked.

"RCR arrived quickly, the problem was sorted out, and we were on the move within a couple of hours." I replied. " It really is very much like calling out the AA - only wetter!!"

It had been a nice coincidence.

Talking of coincidences...

It was later that day, while we were moored and recovering, that Michelle and I had our "Hippocampus" moment. Do read about it if you haven't already! We're still amazed.

On Sunday morning, with Grace and Michelle still in a lot of pain, we carried on to Hillmorton Locks, which we ascended solo, though with a bit of help from a vollie at the bottom lock. We moored above the Admiral Nelson lock at Braunston. Another light day.

Sunday had been hot and sunny. Just the three Braunston locks had been a sweltering experience. Monday was cooler. We finished the locks in tandem with NB Mister E,

did the tunnel in style and a lot of drips, turned left at Norton Junction

and ran into a hold-up at Watford Locks.

The 45 minutes was enough time for us to have a bite to eat, after which Michelle got out to do the locking on this final flight. The rest of the journey was frustratingly slowed by a boat in front of us which was travelling so slowly that even our tick-over speed was too fast. He was well aware of us, but made no attempt to let us past for ages. Sorry, but, in the circumstances, we were a bit annoyed. Eventually, he stopped for us, and apologised as we overtook.

"I only go slow", he said.

Back at Yelvertoft, we had a very welcome dinner at The Wheatsheaf, and Michelle drove back home on Tuesday morning. We all agreed that, despite the injuries and break-down, we'd had a really good time together.


  1. Having just received my annual RCR renewal notice, for a service I have yet to use, I am glad my subscriptions are being put to good use in getting you home. Hopefully we will be cruising again soon.

  2. I'm very grateful for your contribution, Phil! We do certainly get our money's worth out of our subscription. I sort of hope that you guys never do - if you see what I mean! I'm looking forward to following your cruise accounts soon - and to hearing why Achernar's been out of use for so long! Happy travels.