About Us

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In 1977 we hired our first narrowboat from Anglo Welsh at Market Harborough.From that moment our destiny was set. In 2006 we finally purchased our own brand new 57' narrowboat which we named 'Free Spirit'. Our aim is to travel the length and breadth of all the navigable rivers and canals of the UK. This will be our story as it unfolds.

Saturday, 27 June 2015

Amazing who one bumps into on the Thames

Look who we had visit and right outside the bedroom window.

It didn't 'alf rain after we got moored but once it stopped a walk to the weir was in order. Had hoped of walking on the other bank but a private house got in the way and I don't think they would have appreciated me trespassing on their land.

Lock landing was on the other side.
After an evening with the Fox's (Dave and Heather) playing Mexican Train and partaking of their excellent beer, bed beckoned by 10.30pm. Another remarkably peaceful night with only the ducks pecking at the hull to occasionally disturb our slumber.

So waking to a very fine morning, we left before the lock keeper was on duty and traveled the 7 miles to Goring. Must say we were kept on our toes by the canoeist. Our speed going downstream was around 5mph. We were easily overtaken by those going the same way as us, but those traveling upstream seemed to fly. I'm sure they create more wash then the big plastic cruisers! Meeting a slower narrowboat we did wonder if we would ever get past but Dave saw the opportunity on a wide expanse of river and went for it, closely followed by FS

At Cleeve lock we stopped for water. This is the only lock for quite a few miles to top up the tank and it seems as if everyone had the same idea. It was bedlam and without a lock keeper on duty to sort everyone out, queue jumping became the norm. We were very glad to have got there first and after 40 minutes of filling both Vixen and FS's tanks, (quite a slow fill compared to some on the Thames) we left them to it.

Joined by two plastics.
Is was as we exited the lock that we saw a lovely stretch of meadow mooring. So winding to face upstream we made for the the only available space at the end. On the bank a lady was cutting her husbands hair and they kindly offered to move their boat about 6ft so we could get both boats in. Then we realised who the lady was. It was Marilyn and Dave on nb Waka Huia. 
So kettle went on, chairs and sunbrolly set up, chocolate biscuits arrived supplied by Heather and a very pleasant hour was spent chatting about this and that but mainly New Zealand and the strengthening British pound. Good for us but not so good for them back in New Zealand.

From L to R, haircut Dave, Heather, Ian, Marilyn and Heather's Dave.
We are going to chill out tonight, no Uno or Mexican Train or booze, just an evening in front of the TV watching Casualty.

And seen on route,

Nesting Grebe

And older youngster

Dad in defense mode

Yet another Kite

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