Sunday, 25 August 2013

Cruisin' again

Sunday 18th August to Sunday 25th August 2013

After a couple of relaxing days back in the marina we needed to be off cruising again – we have a date in Shardlow.

But none of this could happen before Phil came in to finish the new hearth for the diesel stove to be set on – the very reason that we are off to Shardlow.

Have to say that we are very pleased with the end result.

Phil - just like a rabbit in the headlights - with his handiwork
It really isn’t any hardship whatsoever to be off cruising again, nor is it any come-down after Paris – it is just a pleasure to be out on the boat again and so soon!

There is a schedule to meet but not so tough that we can’t see more new places along the way. It has to be about mooring in different places whenever you travel a similar way as you have done before.

Our first new mooring was by bridge 70, from where we wandered down to the antique centre (they didn’t seem too interested in haggling over any prices so we kept our cash); The Wolseley Arms served up quite lovely food and a pleasant atmosphere.

Next, it was onto Fradley Junction, where we were due to meet up with Tone and Julie with whom we shared locks way back in 2008, when we were on a hire boat, but we missed them as we had gone down a lock and by the time we walked back up they had gone through heading to Great Haywood – never mind we will catch up with them later.

the puppy in Banjo coming out - yet again
After that it was onto Burton and here we called back into Shobnall Park – it is ideal for Banjo to run around a bit – it really doesn’t matter where you moor in Burton, it is a long way from the town centre. Here we needed to get a couple of windows cut – one as a replacement for the broken one and the other as a spare.
From here on it is lovely cruising and we didn’t need to travel especially long on any day to reach our end point in time, so Willington it was. We did try out the café in Willington this time – very nice indeed.

As we had some time spare it was a chance to get the perspex out and recut some new double glazing for the front windows and install them – very pleased with the end result – we needed to remove one lot of curtains away from where the new stove will be and also to put the other curtains between the two layers of glass and perspex.

From the rest of the panels that we had we managed to get more pieces cut for the portholes; and installed the first layer of magnets – gee she keeps me busy, I think holiday mode is better.

We managed to catch up with Peter (nb Moonshadow) with whom we travelled back in March on our way towards Manchester –Meagan was back on the boat so we will have to catch up with her later on.

An interesting days cruising to Swarkestone on Sunday – Stenson Lock provided a break with about an hours wait – it is becoming increasingly annoying when people find it outside their ability to provide help at locks – only coming along when it is their turn to go into the lock – and sometimes only when they are actually in the lock – so we are adopting a more “bu___r them” attitude – we will always go down to the lock to help those that are ready to help others – as for those who don’t we simply walk away from the lock and leave them to it.

Anyway, apart from that, we found a nice mooring at Swarkestone and wandered down to The Crewe and Harpur for lunch – about average for a gastro pub; Diane then thought it would be nice to follow the public footpath back to Barrow Upon Trent and see the pub there.

suviving the nettles on our walk

in the clear(ing)
Public footpath, one might say “how hard can that be?” – the shoulder high nettles were one thing, the wrong path could be another, the field mice might be something else again – but all-in-all it was a pleasant walk – we found the next village and the pub and rested enough to return for further relaxing.

34 Miles, 19 Locks, 1 Tunnel

Totals: 1995 Miles, 1451 Locks, 63 Tunnels, 29 Lift Bridges, 141 Swing Bridge

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