Tuesday, 3 June 2014

Surprised? You can say that again!

Morning came pretty early aboard WaL.  David was awake about 5:30am, I was not.  
But at 6:30 tea was delivered to the crew.  Up and dressed breakfast was porridge with rhubarb strawberries raspberries and blueberries.  We had decided to have bacon sandwiches at the top. 
When we looked out it was thick fog.  Kinda pretty too.

New camera, I have to figure out how to switch off the date.
Near the top with the mist lifting.
Wal and Pedal in view in the lock.

Amanda & my David working the locks.

No boats in sight from where I was.

In the distance the closed lock gates tells how far Wal was.

Sun beginning to break through now.

One of the hire boat’s crew was out looking at the lock, that was all the signal we needed, engine started, windlasses grabbed along with cameras.  The lock keeper arrived on his bike at 7:45am unlocked the bottom lock where the two boats were hovering and we were off. It was a breeze, I went ahead as forward scout to open the gates, that left four of them to work the locks, they developed an easy rhythm of two shutting one lock then walking ahead to do the next one, it meant that two people did every other lock.  I was ahead and the fog was so thick early on that I lost sight of everyone almost at once.  I opened all of the 16 bottom gates and it took me almost 45 mins, some of the gates were really heavy even when the locks were empty.  Food for thought CART.
The sun lifted gradually and my crew came back into view.  Reader don’t be too concerned at the hirers behind us, yes they had to reset all the locks but there were 8 adults on one boat and 4 adults on the other.

We did all of them all the way to Devizes and were almost 3 hrs exactly I think.  David Lewis was Captain that morning and did the timings.  Bucks Fizz was the order of the day as we sat in the hot sun on the visitor moorings, we said our final goodbyes to Patsy and Tony, then carried on for a long day than we are used to with the Boat Sharers here to help.

Dream Team Caen Hill 2014
It was hot, really hot in the sun.  The countryside looked lovely.  All boaters know how different the scenery looks when you are going in the other direction, we whizzed along the 15 mile pound.
Views across the open countryside which is better away from the canal.

 Suddenly someone looked at the waste levels and it was pretty high considering that the next place is Newbury.  Easy decision to stop off at Honey Street Wharf for a pump out.  Amanda and I were sitting alone in the cratch in the sun drinking tea, the men were sorting out the smelly end, I could hear voices and chatting and after a long while I went back to offer a cup of tea to the men.  

Shuteye in the sun at Honeystreet wharf.

A bit of a shock to then walk into my bedroom to find my electric fold down bed up and in position, a huge grin on the face of my husband standing next to it and David Lewis on the floor underneath it with the lady from the wharf!  Even more surprising was my husband’s line           
“Oh darling there you are,  I thought you were asleep!!!!!!!!”
To date Amanda and I haven’t had a convincing explanation.

Later the men dropped us girls off the boat at Pewsey.  Amazingly Reader there was not a boat on the water point!!!!!
Amanda and I played the car bunny hopping game fetching their BMW, we even jogged to the car.  Then of course had to play the now famous tyre game…..  Not for much longer though, Mr Lewis says if his car is ever left in Norfolk long enough he will take it to be fixed but its always down near the K&A, I don’t know quite what he means.

Amanda and I drove to Wootton Rivers parked up and walked back to the boat along the canal in the afternoon sunshine.  I am pleased to report that the amazing medieval manor house at Wootton Rivers is even more visible now with all the ghastly conifers down just a bit more tidying up to do.
Supper was pretty good rump steaks with sweet potato wedges and salad followed by New York cheesecake with raspberries.
A great memorable day.

Discussion point;
In our absence yesterday Patsy had had a knock on the boat side and found a lady there, who asked Patsy if she could please use her toilet…..

Now what would you say?


  1. Yes.
    If someone is that desperate that they are prepared to make the request I would oblige and hope that the same courtesy was offered to me should I need it.
    X Lesley

  2. I concur with Lesley, You never know we, (excuse the pun), could be in that ladies place one day and it must have been embarrassing for her to have to ask in the first place.

  3. Some nice shots with snazzy camera. And as for bed incident lets just say I have got to the BOTTOM of it and your husband had the better view.

  4. Well you two are very nice kind people. I confess I was very surprised that a request had been made. I know boaters only ever use their own loos and never anyone else's lest they block. I take onboard your comments and will try to be more compassionate in the future.
    Pasty said yes but he way, as she too is a lovely person.