Friday, 27 April 2018

April Showers

Wednesday 25th April 2018
Fradley Junction to Alrewas
2 miles, 4 locks

The day dawned bright and sunny, but with a sharp bite to the wind.  Between the showers after dinner yesterday the three of us went for a walk round Fradley Pool and Monty and I pottered round there again this morning and this time I had my camera with me.  It is a scant half mile circuit, but what is loses in length of walk it makes up for with delights round many corners. When we were moored here four years ago we were at the other end of this walk and went in by the other entrance, so missed this information board.

With a dragonfly to welcome you in

A peaceful scene on a sunny morning

There is a fabulous looking bird hide, which, sadly is shut

such a sad reflection on society

I love this heron to be found near the hide

Quiet and leafy before many walkers are about

It was also too early for the fishermen

Nest boxes and bird feeding trays are there in abundance

And what a fantastic pond dipping platform

Even a picnic table for when the weather is slightly more clement

and a board walk taking you right onto the lake

This was originally a reservoir to top up the canal.  It has certainly been put to good use - a 'must do' if you are around this way.

We pushed off across the canal to deposit the small amount of rubbish accumulated overnight and empty the yellow water container - neither particularly necessary, but it is wise to take advantage of facilities whilst you can.  It was around 10 am when we headed for the first lock a couple of hundred yards away.  Now I know this is April, but about ten minutes after I took this photo just as we reached the lock a really ferocious shower hit us.  There was nowhere to go to wait it out, so there was nothing for it, but to get very wet.

It was just a short journey today.  Two locks together, then a short gap - time to start the kettle boiling, but not to make the tea/coffee before the third lock.  The next gap was long enough to make the drinks and I nearly had time to finish mine before we got to the last lock of the day.

 Rape is certainly a popular crop round here.

I suspect this is a redundant sign about the previous occupants of this field

or do builders turn nasty if fed!!

To our surprise we had the pick of the moorings, so stopped on the 14 day rings near the church - it is very peaceful out here and the walk to the village centre is very easy.

I don't think the neighbours will be bothering us

Thursday 26th April

Last time we were here the war memorial was decorated with knitted poppies (it was 2014, so the start of the Great War).  This time the WI are celebrating their centenary and it is now decorated with

knitted bunting

Alrewas is a lovely village, not that we did much exploring despite the fact that we were here all day.  There was no rest for the wicked - we had a domestic day as well as a bit of exploring.  It has a well equipped Co op and a great butcher - we parted with quite a lot of money there, so hope it all tastes as good as it looks!

All Saints Church which not open when I went past.

On the domestic front I rinsed down the port side of the boat and roof and cleaned all the windows that side.  I was lucky I spotted the dog deposit that some thoughtless dog owner left so close to our boat that it was almost touching it.  Not happy.

Whilst I was busy outside Chris was busy inside - he wanted to make a marmalade cake.  Everything was mixed when I got asked 'where is the 2lb loaf tin'??  Despite a search in all the likely places it was not to be found, so we must, for some reason best known to us at the time, have taken it home.  So what to do?  We had the loaf tin liners, so he used 4 of them sat them in a brownie tin and then wedged them in with a couple of smaller tins.  Not perfect and the cake is an odd shape and slightly brown (we think the layers of liners slowed down the cooking), but sometimes needs must and you have to make the most of a bad job.  A new tin is on the Tesco delivery due tomorrow.

After lunch we walked along the canal with Monty, passed where the River Trent joins the canal for a short time.  The boards at the lock are in the green, so no problems getting on our way tomorrow.

Looking back at the lock just before the river joins the canal

There was a public footpath that might have tempted us,but not with all that mud,

 I guess the name says it all

Back at the boat we had a visitor!

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