Sunday, 17 July 2016

Nice Easy and Relaxed Days (I’d like to see that!) and a Stabbing

Wednesday 13th July to Saturday 16th July 2016

There seems to be a bit of a plan that we have when seeking a mooring in any particular place – the vast majority of times it works – only on rare exceptions has it failed us.

Part of that is being prepared to leave at a time which with the expected time of cruising will mean that previously moored boats have left and Voila!! – a space is available.
 
The chimneys of Hampton Court Palace - looks like a scene perfect for
Dick van Dyke and a verse of Chim Chiminey
Gordan and I were left on the boats this morning as Dot and Diane walked from Hampton Court Palace around to the moorings at Kingston – about 2 miles - through Home Park.
They were to phone back and then we were to follow – bringing the boats with us.
 
The Long Water in Home Park - part of the improvements made by Charles II
and around which were planted 758 Dutch limes

Peeking out from behind a tree this young deer was checking on Dot and Diane
invading it's territory

D&D left; we had some quiet peaceful time on our respective boats; phones ring; calmy leave Palace moorings; cruise around the corner; phone calls from D&D just to check on us (“where are you?”) – lo and behold we were within eyesight.

Moorings aplenty; we moor up; boats all OK – short cruise – all done for the day – now we can relax.

It was a very lovely cruise around – sun was shining brightly – perfect morning for it all.

After that, there was time for some work for me, before we all headed out for lunch to a lovely Chinese restaurant, Jin Jin.
The food was superb – can highly recommend it to anyone.

When we left, D&D fancied some shopping which lacked a certain appeal to Gordon and I – we thought that a little bit of man-time would be a good way to spend an hour or so.

We made it as far as the White Hart, which was reasonable close to our moorings, when the heavens opened – wouldn’t be able to get back now – Diane with all of her umbrellas wasn’t with us – only option that we could see was to make it wet on the inside as well as the outside – so we did.

One of the things about modern technology is that the mobile phone means you are never very far from someone wanting to check up on you and so it was the ringtone was a giveaway – “Where are you dear?” – said Dot to Gordon (I am sensible enough to leave mine uncharged and on the boat).
Apparently we had been invaded by pirates and they had a dog called Muffin – that would be Linda and Richard from nb Mary H – and not long after we had a full quorum of three at the pub with Richard’s arrival.
Then the rain came back again – aarrrghhh! trapped again – calls for another beer.

Timing is everything in life – whether it be picking the right time to arrive for a mooring or the right time to leave the pub, so that the next phone call (“Where are you dear?”) came just as we were crossing the busy Horse Fair road on our way back to the boats – we could honestly say that we were on our way.
Greeted by Linda and Muffin (Muffin was the one with the dirty paws and Linda the one with the big hug) we came across Mary H breasted up to us – as it should be when the spots have all disappeared (timing is everything).

Just like we have not been apart, we caught with things since we had last met.

About 3 weeks previously, I had slipped on the wet back end of Ferndale with my right leg crashing hard against the upper steel deck – the subsequent result was severe swelling, bruising and pain.
My trusty nurse determined as best she could that it wasn’t broken but the pain persisted and a couple of weeks ago we visited John Radcliffe in Oxford for x-rays which confirmed no break.
Minimal reduction in the swelling and pain now meant that she was concerned enough for us to visit Kingston hospital – at 8pm.
It is only 1½  miles up the road – a leisurely walk, some would say, but I had to push her as well as me.

We were seen, had blood samples taken, confirmed that there was no infection but no result on any blood clots.
Nurses (and doctors) have some type of perverse sense of humour – sense when it is as a joking matter to delight in stabbing a poor defenceless patient with sharp needles – even in the name of “just-in-case” – I’ll give them just-in-case.
I cannot show you a photo of the size of the massive bruising that resulted.
Hospitals - not my favourite of places

Diane was just as bad – smiling away demonically at the thought that she may be called upon to deliver more (if required) in the event of a blood clot – the smiling assassin.
We walked back to the boat (this time downhill) and arrived there about 12:15am with the need to be up in the morning to arrange for a scan and another trip up the hill.
So much for the short leisurely day – it was a long partly leisurely day (and night).

Morning came and it was farewell time again – both of the other crews were leaving – heading towards Teddington, Brentford and beyond – so hugs all around – then we were alone.
Bye to Mary H and crew - Linda, Muffin and Richard - see you soon

Another joyfull walk up to the hospital (seems like we here not so long ago), scan done, reviewed, leg prodded (with me yelping) and the good news was that all was OK – what do you mean OK? – well no infection, no breaks, no blood clots – just pain and bruising.
Another trip back to the boat – keep your leg raised and don’t do too much.
 
Oooh dear - look what's happened!!
At least over the last few weeks, Diane has taken on the role of checking the stern gland greaser and giving it a screw when she can – and checking on any water in the bilge.
Same day, she does her bit to ease my life by checking on this – “Dear, the container under the stern gland is getting full of water, I think you will need to empty it”.
“yep, and I will also need to repack the stern gland – if I tell you what to do, can you do it?”
The reply – “that’s a blue job”

So down into the engine bay to repack the stern gland – of course I could try and do it with my leg raised as requested but then I would need to do the job hanging by my ankles.
An hour later; job done – the overseer exhorted her approval and put away her whip (sadly no signs of leather or high heels).
Now we were at Friday – end of the week virtually – Diane had rung the pharmacy in Shepperton the day before – they had the script and she could pick up at about 5pm on Friday.
Hampton Court Bridge - majestic in profile.

Pretty much well photographed - but has just been revarnished - doubt that it
is Dave Gilmour there on the left giving it another coat

So off we were again early sticks – and made it to Shepperton by 10:30am but there were no spaces free at The Manor Moorings – next best we moved around to the moorings at Weybridge and plenty there so we stopped – very pleasant indeed.
 
The view from our mooring - around to the left is Shepperton Lock...

...but look at the Lockkeeper's cottage - sign me up for the job

We did a bit of a reconnoitre into Weybridge itself and upon return to the boat it was about time for Diane to take the ferry across the Thames (not the Mersey) and head up to the pharmacy – she had to be careful about the timing – the last ferry back was at 17:45 – if she missed it then a 2.9 mile walk.
 
Found these old gate posts when we walked into Weybridge - I have no history
on them but look pretty much like the entrance to the original estate.
I know someone will set me straight if I am wrong

Touch tennis courts in the Recreation Park in Weybridge.
Just a bit too small for the Murray clan.

Wonderment and she had returned by 16:30 – everything required in the bag.

It was a peaceful quiet night for us, not even a Happy Friday picture down at the pub – we needed a bit of rest and without a noisy pub next to us, that is exactly what we got.

What a lovely day Saturday started off and continued to be – practically full sunshine all day. We wandered into Walton-on-Thames (still a bit away from the river itself) for a change of scenery and decided to have a breakfast whilst there; a bit of shopping was completed (including the obligatory milk top-up) before returning.

Yes - that is where we are

This is for Paul and now Gordon 

We are not used to the sun shining as we were quite hot after the round trip and just needed to sit down and relax – maybe it is true that we are getting old.

With such a nice day unfolding, the idea of moving completely went out the window.

Eventually we made it to that nice and easy relaxed day!



12 Miles, 2 Locks
YTD:  420 Miles (676 km) , 273 Locks, 4 Tunnels, 14 Lift Bridges, 3 Swing Bridges

Total: 4215 Miles (6783 km), 2972 Locks, 116 Tunnels, 59 Lift Bridges, 170 Swing Bridges