Monday, 11 April 2016

To The Fleur de Lys, Lowsonford and a few modifications

Sunday 10th April 2016
Lock 28 to the Fleur de Lys Pub, Lowsonford
0.5 mile, 2 locks

No oversleeping today!  Phone and batteries were in tip top condition.  What a glorious day it was - dry, bright and sunny albeit a bit nippy.  I promised a view across the cut and here it is taken first thing this morning - note the blue sky.  Definitely 'wild mobile home camping' for someone.

Just before we set off

And heading for the first lock - it certainly was a wonderful morning to be on the cut

At our second lock we came across this sign - good job we did not need anything as today was Sunday and we are leaving tomorrow morning!   We have been there before and had we needed anything I would have given them a ring.

As we had such a short trip to do today we did not remove the extension from the chimney - a mistake as we found at the second lock where Chris had to stop and make the change.

It does look, however, as other people did not notice in time and took a chunk out of the bridge!

We were due to stop just after that lock at the Fleur de Lys Pub - as we arrived someone pulled out leaving a perfect space for us.

The reason for the short trip was we had friends arriving and lunch was booked in the pub for 13:30. Jane and Chris were on their way to Plymouth for the overnight ferry to Roscoff for a week in Brittany.  We heard on the news earlier that ferries have been delayed due to the inclement weather, so we hope they get there safely without too much need for seasickness tablets.  They are standing outside this cottage which is a Landmark Trust property available as a holiday let.  These barrel roofed cottages were all lengthmen's homes - the lengthman looked after a stretch or 'length' of canal as well as the lock that their homes were close to.   If you want more details have a look here.

Opposite the cottage overlooking the lock is an Antony Gormley sculpture that is part of a series of five such statues that are part of a series of 5 called 'LAND'.  The others are at:

Saddell Bay, Mull of Kintyre, Argyll and Bute,
South West Point, Lundy, Bristol Channel, Devon
Clavell Tower, Kimmeridge Bay, Dorset
Martello Tower, Aldeburgh, Suffolk

They are on display for one year from 16th May 2015, so we only just got here in time.

When we went across to the pub I just had to take a picture of Tentatrice including the towels blowing in the breeze.

This rather lovely Morgan in the car park caught the eye.  Chris wondered if the owner had a desire to be part of the emergency services!

After a very good lunch (Jane and I had roast beef with all the trimmings), they headed off towards Plymouth leaving Kiera their 4 year old Black Lab to have a holiday with her friend Monty.

After a good walk they settled down for a well earned sleep.

The only downside to this mooring for us is no phones (EE and Three) and no television.  The dongle (also Three) does, thankfully, work.

I mentioned modifications and we have a few since last year.

What was the broom cupboard now has shelves and gives a lot of extra useful storage

 So where are the long mops etc. - on clips behind the toilet - not very pretty, but we don't spend much time in there!

A couple of years ago we fashioned a series of washing lines in the bow by wrapping two bungee cords around the cratch board and tying bits a cord between them.  It worked well, but the bungees dug into the paintwork damaging it.  Chris took the board home over the winter, repaired the damage and repainted.  He also added a set of four hooks at each end - result a longer and much better set of washing lines.

 Now I know it is really sad to get excited about a vacuum cleaner, but this has made such a difference to my life on board that it worth it's weight in gold.  We had a hand held one on board last year which did help, but I did seem to spend a lot of my life on my hands and knees.

This has two heads so does the mats and the hard floors and it is a matter of minutes to get rid of the dog hair, mud and coal dust with ease.

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