Saturday, 20 August 2016

Wild, Wet and Windy!

Friday 19th August 2016
Cross Green to Gailey
5.25 miles, 1 lock

We were very sorry to read this morning that Elaine from the Manly Ferry lost her battle with cancer yesterday (18th August).  We all knew it was coming, but it is still very sad news.  We only met Elaine and Paul once and that was 5 years ago when we were trying to decide on whether to get a second hand or new boat and if new, which boat builder to use.  One possibility was Barn Owl and they were kind enough to let us go and look at their lovely Barn Owl boat, nb Caxton.  They were very welcoming and very patiently answered all our questions.  Elaine was too young to leave this earth and our thoughts are with Paul at this very difficult time.  A fellow blogger from the home brew boat AreandAre has written a really wonderful tribute to Elaine and spells out why sometimes one has to follow a dream.  If you are interested please have a look HERE.  I promise you it is worth reading.

So back to our journey.  Well that lovely quiet mooring we picked well away from the pub last night was sadly far from peaceful and idyllic!  At about 8pm someone (or maybe more than one) across the cut, but behind a hedge so we could not see them, decided it was a good time to get the chain saw out and cut down two large leylandii trees!  We had constant noise about 20 feet from the boat for around an hour!  Then around 2am a dog across the cut started to bark and bark and bark.  That was bad enough, but of course, poor Monty felt he had to reply!!  You can't blame him - he was only doing his job.  Then we woke in the morning to the rain drumming on the roof!!

We knew the weather was going to be bad, so we were not taken by surprise and we donned the wet weather gear and got going mid morning.  From shorts and t-shirt to this in 24 hours.

I rather fancy this house with that wonderful garden chair and conservatory!

This looked really precarious - it is actually at much more of an angle than it looks in the picture.  Imagine how long the canal would be shut if it rolled into it!

We did wonder if this is their 13th boat!

This is another canal photo that has to be taken - the round house at Gailey.

We stopped just below the lock at Gailey and took Monty for a walk along the tow path.  When we were going through Bratch locks we were discussing our boat name with the lock keeper (they note down each boat that goes through) and he commented that he had had a boat through earlier on that had, or so he thought, a French name and here it is moored a little further on than we were at Gailey.
 But is it French?  No it is a Black Country boat - 'Am I Bothered'!!

And so to end the day.......

Saturday 20th August 2016
Gailey to Penkridge
2.5 miles, 5 locks

We had a much quieter night despite being quite close to the A5.  The morning alarm of rain hammering on the roof was the same as yesterday though!  Nothing for it, but to tog up and go.  As it turned out the rain was only very intermittent, so we ended up rather over dressed.

Near Boggs lock is this:

I have been reliably informed that it is a wind turbine under construction.
The next lock (Rodbaston) is so close to the M6 that you can see the road signs.

It is rare to get a shot of the boat with lorries whizzing past in the background!

We made good time to the sanitary station at Penkridge to do the necessary filling and emptying and we then pulled back to the moorings before Penkridge lock.

We treated ourselves to lunch in The Boat before going into the town for a bit of shopping.  When we were here two years ago I went into this shop

Where I bought this which I have worn a lot, so a return visit seemed to be a good idea (well to me at least!).  Did I come out empty handed?


I must apologise for the background of these two photos - the only white thing I could think of was our rather elderly and well worn chopping board!!

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