Friday 17th July to Saturday 18th July 2015
Mooring fees here are ₤10 a night which seems a bit steep but if you want to stay here then you pay the price.
It was a breakfast at 'spoons on Friday so that we could catch on le Tour by seeing the ITV4 highlights show - we are more than happy with all of that.
A chance to wander around
Henley and see more of it - when it is all said and done,
it is much the same as a hundred other towns we have visited, all-be-it a bit more
Diane managed to get about half of her walking tour done - with me in tow - and it is always interesting.
We did manage to find the plaque in the churchyard where some of Dusty Springfield's ashes were interred.
The boats all look rather spiffy - that's a good word to use around here.
Later on it was a bit more work and then a few beers with Andy whilst enjoying the sun and the surrounds - oh, Sue and Diane were there as well.
Linda had suggested a BBQ for the evening meal which was a great idea, but unfortunately Sue was not feeling the best so just the four of us sat down to be smoked out but we got all of the food cooked and somehow there managed to be three empty wine bottles at the end - which I am sure was Linda's fault - Richard and I would have made it more than just three.
Poor Muffin did not get so much as a sausage out of it all - but we had a great night - not finishing until late.
We were all looking forward to visiting the Thames Traditional Boat Rally for the day, but somehow to begin with the suggestion had been made to have breakfast at 'spoons - it didn't come from Diane (nor I) but we didn't mind.
Before continuing, I need to mention at least one very important point.
Every morning with her coffee(s), Diane tries to read through all of the blogs and get up-to-date with Facebook.
I cannot remember where she saw it, although I suspect that is was Facebook.
It appears that there has been a study made in
that provides evidence (but could just be a strong suggestion), that men who
look at women's breasts are very much more likely to live longer. Germany
So during breakfast, when Diane lowered her iPad for a minute, Andy expressed his gratitude that she was now helping him to live longer.
Andy and I are now committed to the onerous task of improving our likely lifespan (I suspect that Richard may be doing the same but just not saying so!).
We all wandered down to the rally, paid our entrance fees, spent sometime walking around viewing the exhibits and the stalls; morning tea/coffee was had; spent time watching the parade past - very much different boats along here; time also well spent on lengthening of life - have to say that when the sun is out so are the white pointers - both Andy and I were observing (strictly for medical reasons you will understand).
|...and the Royal Barge "Gloriana"|
|People just popped up in strangest of places.|
|The organisers were not leaving anything to chance|
Diane stayed watching whilst I trekked back to the boat with some of her purchases and to pick up a couple of chairs - we would be staying for a while yet to see a run by the original Bluebird - now restored and operational.
|Eighteen oarspersons drafted into the boat - obviously to cut fuel costs|
It was just so relaxing sitting there, enjoying the sun and the female owner of one of the boats in front of us (Diane had actually pointed her out), and the commentary about each of the boats cruising in front of us.
|and vintage bicycles - this one a tandem with side-car|
|Two WWI triplanes also flew over|
Anticipation was growing as 17:00 approached; Bluebird was suddenly in front of us - being towed to the head of the course, but with the engine running.
The crowd was all standing as the seconds and minutes ticked by - waiting and looking.
The time went by - now about 17:20 - the words could be clearly heard by anyone within earshot of one the radios of the many
around - "Confirm Abandon". marshals
A sigh of disappointment of the news which was shortly afterwards confirmed by the announcer - "due to technical difficulties......"
|Bluebird with engine running....the last we saw of it for the day|
And with that we trudged our way home - Andy and I stuck to our task however.
About 21:45 we all assembled outside our boats with the intention of wandering down to Henley Bridge to see the Illuminated Display of a cruise past by some of the boats - we waited and waited - the emergency people then advised that it was about to start (22:25).
We could see lights moving in the distance and soon enough they were upon us - fairly underwhelming it was - just 6 or so vessels and not that great - but thanks to those boats and crew who made the effort.
|The best of the Illuminated Parade|
So it was back to the boats again - Andy and I were curtailed by the dark conditions.
Literally collapsing into bed we were soon asleep - a long day; hot sunny conditions; lots of walking and very sore tired eyes.