Wednesday, 9 July 2014

To Market, To Market ...

Monday 7th July to Wednesday 9th July 2014

After such a busy weekend it was never in doubt about getting up early on Monday morning to do some work - I was so certain that this is what would happen - strange how these decisions come back to bite you on the bum as I would find out later.

First up we had to return the car, but not before Diane had done the shopping thing - the economy of Stafford is safe for another week.

We do love hiring from Enterprise - the rates are good, the staff are always friendly, the cars are good and of course, the pick-up and drop-off are excellent.

So, we untied a little later than we normally would for any day of the week.

First destination was Norbury Junction - water to take on and an Elsan trip to counter-balance it all.
We blew collective raspberries across the canal at the workshop.
Boats hemmed in, in the Newport Canal arm at Norbury Junction

taking on water - only into the water tank

Before long we were off again; the end goal was essentially to travel a bit today and get some miles behind us so that we would be able to make it to Market Drayton on Tuesday in time to find a mooring for the Wednesday market - see, lots of planning goes into being spontaneous.

As well, I did need to get some of that work done that I had postponed from this morning.
The Shroppie shelf was conspiring to reduce the number of locations where we could moor up.
Some we couldn't get into; others we delayed making a decision until we had passed by.
Eventually, we pulled into a mooring at bridge 55 after a hire boat was leaving - mmm nice location, TV OK, phone signal - no bloody internet - the myfi wouldn't work; Diane's phone as a modem was sposmadic; and my old reliable Nokia was not having a bar of it.
I knew there was stuff that I had to do but the signals wouldn't play ball.
Aaaarrrrgggghhhh!! - hindsight is wonderful, but why didn't I get up early, even if I was still asleep.
When you can't do anything, then you can't do much about it.

Tuesday morning was a bit better; I managed to install software for the Nokia on the new laptop and eventually got it going - slow but reliable.
After worrying a bit about letting people down, the emails showed that anyone had really missed me and I managed to get through reading them all and answering most.
At least it all ended well.
funny place to moor up

The obligatory picture of High Bridge

Cadbury Wharf
The agenda for today was to head off early - a handful of miles and 5 locks to do it would be a 2 and 1/2 hour trip - moorings can be in short supply at Market Drayton.
Hewn out of solid rock... wonder it is so narrow

We made it to the top of Tyrley Locks just before two moored boats also set off; the first two were against us but after that the upcoming boats meant that it was crossing over in the pounds and easy-peasy.
Tyrley Locks

..and friends

By the time we exited at the bottom, there was a growing queue waiting their turn to start going up.
We met a couple more in the narrow area before bridge 61 and after that it was just a matter of picking the best spot available for the panels - and there were a few from which to select.
We had passed by Cockney Sparra II and Dampervan, moored short of the 48hr moorings and caught up with Sue and Dave in the town later whilst we were up exploring.
As we sat enjoying morning tea the rain appeared and across the table there was Diane, in-denial of the rain - which was "rinsing" the washing which had been hung out for drying purposes.

When we made it back, it wasn't that bad and she left it and later on the bright sunshine and breeze justified the decision.

An elderly gent wandered by with his dog - a friendly greyhound-cross - and he asked about the name Ferndale - was it related to the village in Wales in the Rhondda? - indeed it was, and he turned out to be a refugee from Pontypridd, just down the road.
So naturally there was a discussion about Welsh weather and faggots.

We watched the end of stage 4 of le Tour and then relaxed in anticipation of the Germany v Brazil World Cup semi-final - bit of an anti-climax really - all over by the half hour mark - bye bye Brazil!

Wednesday is market day here and we wandered up to take a look - we have to say that it was quite a good one - Diane managed to get a new battery for her watch, all fitted and completed in about 20 seconds - only ₤2.50.
There were all of the usual stalls and of course, for us, the obligatory olive man where we were inundated with samples to taste - naturally we purchased some olives and fetta.

Back to the boat, via the supermarket - one thing that you do not see at any market is milk for sale, and with the fridge rather depleted of the white stuff, we managed to fix that up.

Having had a very busy weekend, there had been no chance to pay any attention to the engine and batteries, so this afternoon it was time to raise the boards and checkout down below - fortunately it was all good and even a check of the weedhatch only showed a very small amount of grass in there.

A productive day to get us all back on track before we head off tomorrow.

13 Miles, 5 Locks

Totals: 2638 Miles, 2007 Locks, 91 Tunnels, 32 Lift Bridges, 151 Swing Bridges


  1. Was she down to her last 2 litres of milk Ray? I can't believe she'd let it get any lower than that!

  2. It was not quite as bad as that but she was looking ahead to see where the next supplies would be and how long before we were there.
    Hope all is going well with the prop and that you are underway again soon