Monday 16 May 2016

Great new guide book

Up bright and early we were today, but not as early as The Yarwoods who have a very effective waking system, its called Fletcher and Floyd, their two heavenly Labradors, I saw them snuck past shortly after dawn from behind the bungs and blew Joe a kiss, they are on their way towards Birmingham and we aren't.

Both boats knew the forecast was rain later in the afternoon, so when we pulled out we thought we would have an easy run as one boat had come down the lock only moments before. Chocks away but dash it all!  Another boat way down the line of boats had also read the weather forecast and had pulled out beating us to the lock by one minute.....  part of the fun.

I went up to help them and make the process a little faster and fell into conversation with a lovely lady, together in the few minutes it took to work the lock we had almost set up a political party.  Pity we didn't have longer.

They moved onto the service point, which is exactly what we wanted too. So we went on towards the next one marked at Penkridge, maybe two locks up or so. 
But no sign of the water point, its long gone.  Now Reader we only have a smaller sized water tank, not sure why its so small but we are looking to fill up every four or five days and that is being conservative with usage, so I do get twitchy if we've done a machine wash and I have tackled my boat hair.  No choice but to go on.

That motorway is close along this stretch but after these locks, it is alongside, you can see the whites of the drivers eyes....

We met a handful of boats coming towards us, one was about 300 metres away I really thought that I could have turned the lock, worked David through and still have been able to have been out of their way before they arrived..... but I didn't.

Very damp in the air now when Gailey came into view, the lock was empty with a gate open marginally, but then it abruptly shut in our faces and  we feared someone was just about to fill it right in front of us but no, the gates are just a bit "Swingy".   Now back to our book it made no mention of water here at Gailey, but here were three water taps, so a crisis was averted.  Drizzling now, there are visitor moorings here, but to my mind not very attractive ones as they are under trees, so even with the clear onset of wet weather we carried on past the big chemical works and out again into a more open place.  It was a tad shallow, at one point we were on a slight tilt, but as boating activity stopped the water level rose and we became level.
Hatches battened down, heating on, wet coats set to drip dry in the bathroom, slippers on.

Sausages for supper.

Thats the motorway just up there.

We are almost in the slow lane.

Here the lock landing has collapsed.

Now I think this old ring was for the ropes for the horses but how exactly did it work?  Anyone know?

David finishes this lock whilst I finally drink my tea.

My first sighting of Ragged Robin, or Campion this year.

Rain falls at Gailey and the hire boats don't leave that much room.

Finally got these few added.

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