Monday 17th October to Sunday 23rd October 2011
13 Miles, 5 Locks, 1Tunnel, 1 Swing Bridges – for this week
Totals: 935 Miles, 773 Locks, 28 Tunnels, 18 Lift Bridges, 20 Swing Bridges
We spent an extra day at Fradley Junction and finally got the chance to take a good walk around the nature reserve there – they really do marvellous work on the old quarries and give back to nature an area for everything to flourish.
The weather has continued to be very much unseasonable (in a good way); allows so much more chance to take longer walks both along the towpath and also “off-track”.
I couldn’t understand it really – the café at Fradley Junction, which is actually part of the caravan complex does not have a licence to stay open throughout the year – this is a business in its own right and services the visitors, moorers and walkers around the junction area – so naturally I signed their petition which they will use as evidence to the council should their initial application not be successful.
One day we will have to move – but not a case of waiting for a good day – but we did move on Tuesday – this time no further than Rugeley, but it did mean that we were past the last possible impediments for our passage to the marina – the two locks immediately up from Fradley are the two due for stoppage maintenance commencing 7th November.
I have moored at Rugeley once before for a few days and found no reason why I would not moor there again, plus it provided us with access to the railway station as we needed to go down to Watford and sort out Diane’s registration with the doctor.
We did walk around town to find the things that we needed – a shoe repairer for my Ugg Boots (one had been chewed by the dog – he did survive my wrath); supermarket – well serviced by Morrisons, Aldi and Iceland; but there are a number of lovely shops as well and even better there was a Costa (real coffee).
We found that Rose’s does a great breakfast and the coffee is excellent – “barista-on-site”.
One morning whilst I was busy earning a few dollars for Diane to spend sometime, she took Banjo out for a walk, before we were venturing up to the supermarket.
Upon her return and after I had finished what I was doing we were ready to head off – the customary question “Is it cold outside dear?” – to which the reply came “you will be OK without your coat, but I will take mine”.
I didn’t process that answer in the usual way that I would and we headed off – shopping bags and trolley in tow – the breeze had an unusual chill about it – we had gone too far to return for the coat and I had time to think about what I hadn’t earlier.
A nice day in the sun but rather cold in the shade – the air was pretty chilly.
At least one of us was cosy warm.
After our trip down to Watford; catching up with Maggie, Paddy and Phil; we returned with a doctors registration for Diane – job done.
How did we get it done? I will keep that secret for now.
Now for the bank account.
We moved again on Saturday and had decided to make for Tixall Wide where we now are moored. The Clifford Arms is very much a dog-friendly pub and Banjo enjoyed the experience – even with the barstaff treating the pooches to some munchies. We returned for Sunday lunch, which whilst it wasn’t a traditional roast, was more than satisfactory and very good value. A bit more of a wander around – over to see Shugborough Hall (from outside the area) – we will visit at a later date.
Back to the boat and Diane was ensconced in front of the TV for Strictly Come Dancing (the elimination).
The weather is expected to get a bit wetter on Tuesday so we need to consider when we will move – either before or after – which will it be?
The “Wide” is wonderful and so peaceful – we could stay here for another week (but we won’t be).