Tuesday, 13 August 2013

Thanks to the forgotten keys.......



JL Pinder & Son, Stoke Prior to Droitwich Spa Marina.
4 miles, 11 locks

We did not get wet!  A late start as Chris finished off the painting in the kitchen before we headed off to Pinder’s to take Tentatrice back to Droitwich Spa Marina.  Chris’ car had been left there waiting our return, however, when we got to Pinder’s someone remembered he had left the keys to his car at home!  I left him to sort out the boat with Bob (boat builder) and went off to get them.  The rain was relentless with the windscreen wipers frequently on full speed.  Keys retrieved, I returned to Stoke Prior and by the time we set off the rain had stopped. A fortunate lapse of memory.  Chris' senior moment of the day - mine came later.
The first thing we had to do was go up Stoke Bottom lock,
 wind

and go back down again.  Coming up behind us was nb Lady Hannah
who I had helped up Stoke Locks when I was doing a VLK stint a few months back.  He was doing a single hand stint at the time. We also met them at Tardebigge top lock yesterday.  They kindly finished the lock for us and off we went.  

The rain held off for the rest of the trip which was fairly plain sailing.  We met a Canaltime boat coming towards us crewed by a UK couple and Australian friends. Sadly, although they said they had enjoyed the week as an experience they all said they would never repeat it, so four less converts.  The Australian gentleman said it was like driving in Cornwall – all high hedges and no views. 

He needs to get out more!!  Mind you this did make me realise that autumn is round the corner.

  
We were not sure what was going on here at Hanbury Turn
but there was certainly a lot of blue smoke.
I was pleased to see the VLK, Dave, at Hanbury locks when we arrived around 16:15 – we thought he might have gone home.  I had checked our VLK calendar, so knew that Dave was on duty today, but 16:00 is the notional knocking off time.  We certainly appreciated the help.
 I had jumped ship at the top of Astwood flight . After the second lock my waterproof was returned to the boat.  As I got back on board as we left Hanbury locks (Monty needed a walk) over 2 hours later Chris' comment to me was 'that is a very nice inside out t-shirt'!  Evens then on the senior moments today!

We are now safely moored and we are staying on board overnight as we are off on our day trip to Droitwich Spa with Monty’s breeder and her husband tomorrow.  We left Monty for the first time (apart from trips to the toilet block) whilst we went to Waitrose.  He made a lot of noise!  Our neighbour did say it was not continuous – Monty is going to have to get used to this life afloat.  Chris and Monty have walked down to the M5 bridge to check the water levels - the verdict is that they are good, so we should have no problems tomorrow.

The snags have all been sorted and we are happily re-united with Tentatrice.  They even managed to get rid of the scratch along the side.

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