Sunday, 28 August 2016

A Single Act of Kindness

Friday 26th August to Sunday 28th August 2016

Another warm to hot day saw the start of Friday but for us the day really shone brightly with the arrival of Dot and Gordon for a few days mooring at Rembrandt gardens.
We had missed them a bit – even though it had barely been 10 days.

After they had moored up, it was time to be away – we had lunch to have in Vauxhall – at Zeitgeist, a German pub with a lunchtime serve-up that was highly recommended by D and G.
The number 36 bus took us to Vauxhall bus station and a 15 minute walk got us to the pub – large one in side with quite high ceilings and the doors were open, so that any breeze would be caught.

It made it bareable sitting for lunch, which was a self-serve affair with plenty to satisfy us all – I did over-indulge with the mushroom and cream sauce that was available – suspected of containing garlic and onions – I paid for the luxury later that night.

Pleasing as it was to stay in the pub and just have a couple more drinks we needed to get back to the boats, so another bus trip back in the heat – why are they not air-conditioned?
Saturday, and we were off to Bermondsey to check out a butcher there and also to enjoy the sights and smells of the market.
When we Googled the location of the
butcher the information came up as above.
Note the misspelling of the Chinese coffee
place - should have been Fu-ckoffee

The butcher was found without problem, a lovely little coffee shop was also found – the donuts were literally to die for – the fillings – chocolate; lemon; jam; butter-scotch; and others, were just too tempting – well, at least Gordon resisted.
Yeah, silly people in front of a camera(phone)

I have to draw the line at this - peanut butter one of the
great tastes (not) and should be banned

After that we split up, with D and G heading back towards Stockwell to catch up with their grandson, Jamie, whilst we headed towards the O2 arena – Diane wanted another ride on the Emirates Air Line across the Thames – after which we used the DLR and Jubilee line and Circle line to get back to the boat.
Ready to fly

High above the Thames

Part of the Old Roman Wall of Londinium on the left; the Tower of  London
on the right and a beauty in between

We were pretty knackered again – feeling hot and just a little sweaty – the humidity is what gets you the most.
Plus I wanted to see the Man United v Hull match on BT Sport via the iPad – now that we have access we want to make the most of it – a very late goal saw us remain with full points so far in the season, but a great and gutsy performance from Hull.

It was especially pleasing to wake on Sunday morning and have a few clouds around – it made a welcome relief from the last week.
We were heading off early towards Limehouse Basin and had sorted out with Dot and Gordon to take our spot – they want another week in Paddington and can do so where we were.
So a quick 6:45 am switcheroo – which is the way the London boaters do it all of the time – they were moored for another week, we were on our way.
Stopping for a Costa coffee at bridge 27 and water at St.Pancras Cruising Club, we made pretty good time.
At lock 5, I was talking to a young couple enjoying an early coffee and something to eat; they were admiring the boat and our way of life – hopefully thinking of doing it themselves when we were joined by another boat – 4 young guys with the boat belonging to the parents of one of them – they had it out for the weekend and were moving it from pont A to point B
It was here that something truly wonderful happened.
We noticed that the guys all had lovely looking danish's to go with the coffees they were drinking – Where did they get them – right there at the cafĂ© beside the lock.
We asked the waitress if she would bring us a couple and we would pay for them then – she said she couldn’t and we would need to moor up and come back – we said “thanks but no thanks”and then settled to move through the lock.
Just then the young man who had been sitting talking with us at the table handed us a bag with two lovely danishes and would not take payment – he simply said to return the favour with someone whom we meet along the way.
We just could not believe how lovely and kind he was (and his partner) – the world will be in good hands if they have something to say about it.
We were simply amazed, astounded and just a bit humbled.
These two lovely people deserve to be happy and proud of what they had done.
Thank you for your kindness.

have to say - they were delicious

The two boats continued on until after Lock 8 where we went straight ahead, the others veered off along the Hertford Union.
All was going well until we reached Lock 11 – the pound below the lock had disappeared. Not that the cutting wasn’t there, just the water wasn’t there,
Diane ventured down to Lock 12 (the one into Limehouse Basin – our desitination) – just 2 locks and a ½ mile.
Someone had left one of the gate paddles on the bottom gates open by about 8” – enough that it would drain the pound – most probably overnight. It may very well have been that the paddle gear was stiff and tight and they thought that it was down – anyway we couldn’t go ahead.
the pound is down - no not the UK one just this one

Put a call into CaRT who had just heard about it 5 minutes before we called. The guy looking after it came by about an hour later and explained that he would need to bring water down from above Camden locks and it could take 5-6 hours before we could through the lock.
We opted to go back to the Hertford Union and go around – an addition 5 miles and 4 locks.
Anyway we finally arrived at 16:30 about 4 hours after we thought we would be there; but it was only about an additional 3 hours travelling.

Our new route via the Olympic Stadium - oops sorry West Ham's new
home ground

the water looks lovely and clean - but somehow we still managed to
pick up plastic bags and other rubbish

what can I say

When we walked over to check how the pound was filling it was still about a metre lower than normal, so I think that we made the right decision.
All moored up in Limehouse Basin and enjoying a nice hot shower and a cold drink – we would not have been here yet if we stayed where we were.
We don’t think it was deliberate, neither does CaRT – just one of thise things.
We noticed the first boat coming down through the lock was at about 8pm - long after we arrived and certainly long after we had hoped to arrive.

Fortunately for us it was a reasonable day to travel; it was noted by many of the people that we met along the way – they all seemed to be glad to have a day without the heat that we have been having and the humidity we have endured.
We also know that some people seem to think that we are complaining about the sunshine and the summer – as short as it is – that we are not.

Anyone who knows us, will know that we simply do not like such heat and humidity – it is how we are – a lot of people in this country like to cook themselves until they are lobster red and all blistered – good luck to them – which leads to……

I do not like the heat, that is true
But I think that is for me not you
High heat and humidity makes me sweat
Of this it is right you can surely bet

If you like to not sleep at night
Then certainly you have the right
Summer does not mean only blazing sun
High humidity does not make for any fun

Warm days, quiet nights and lazy breezing
Make summer forget the days of freezing
These are the days that make us glad
And be pleased to say it aint half bad

It is your right to like what you like
But mine to write of what I still like
Summer is not the time that I enjoy most
Wish I do not to spoil your time as my host

You are born to a land that is always more cold
But you wish to stay here to where you hold
Glad to complain about the weather
Losing sight that you stay under tether

Not making that step to try something new
But preferring to criticise those that will do
I do come from the land down under
Where I enjoy the sounds of thunder

I like to hear the drops on the roof
When the rains comes, that is the proof
Green lands here from sun and the rain will abound
In equal share, the growth will astound

I do not wish to see the lovely summer end
But the excess heat does my mind round the bend
But if wish to be always on heat
The smell will not always be so sweet

I respect your to right to say what you feel
But mine too remains as I say to reveal
It should not be something of which to “get a grip”
The voice should be of kinder words for my hardship

All comments I, of course will certainly publish
Even those that I think are a load of old rubbish

16 Miles, 16 Locks
YTD:  530 Miles (853 km) , 338 Locks, 4 Tunnels, 14 Lift Bridges, 3 Swing Bridges

Total: 4325 Miles (6960 km), 3037 Locks, 116 Tunnels, 59 Lift Bridges, 170 Swing Bridges


  1. Me too guys I prefer the cooler weather and hate the humidity. I worked overseas for more than 15 years in extremely hot weather and hated it. It is the reason I moved from Melbourne to Tasmania many years ago. At least we don,t get much of it here in the UK. Everyone's different my hubby Peter loves it. Happy boating. Jennifer and Peter my mactras fiia Bridgewater canal

    1. Hi Jennifer, it takes all sorts to make up this world and some of them like hot weather, but we are very much like you. Haven't been to Tasmania for a while so will have to go back when we finally go back home.
      Enjoy your boating

  2. Hello Ferndale crew... Love to read your blogging stories and I always get a 'warm and fuzzy' feeling when reading about an act of human kindness as exampled here... (Recommendation - the book 'Join Me!' by Danny Wallace shows how these acts can snowball into something huge - with just a bit of comedy along the way... I'm sure you'd love it. Keep up the blogging - you are making me excited for my week on the L&L at the end of September!

    Best regards, Martin

    1. Hi Martin
      i am glad that you enjoy reading the blog. You will love the Leeds & Liverpool canal - we had a great time there a few years back