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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.

Sunday, 30 August 2015

It's a 'push me pull you' moment at the lock

Never a dull moment when the Jameisons are around. Today was no exception. Setting off relatively early as, according to the met office, rain was coming in at 1pm, we joined a boat with no name to ascend Lot Mead lock. All on board hailed from New Zealand and were moving the boat for a friend. They were to leave the boat at Watford and then, after a quick pack up, collect the car and head for Thrupp where another boat was to be moved. As self confessed narrowboat fanatics this was the best way to see our country and not pay extortionate hire boat prices. 

 Below Cassio Bridge lock we came upon Bridgewater boat yard. With Diesel at 70p Ltr this was not to be sneezed at.

 Our Kiwi friends had already gone ahead to set the lock and, with Ian walking on, all I had was a longingful look at the pump before sailing right past. No open sign so I felt slightly relieved. Anyway up we goes and we say farewell to new found friends before stopping for water above the lock. Then Ian decides to walk back to the boat yard 'just in case.' .As luck would have it the open sign was on display. So now we had a dilemma. Next winding hole was above Iron Bridge lock about a mile away, do we go and wind round or do we reverse.  Ian in his infinite wisdom decided that reversing back down the lock would be a good idea. Getting ready to do the deed a boater happened along at that very moment. I cheekily asked if he would allow us to join him in the lock, toe to tail. Cant believe our luck as he was also going to the boatyard, not for diesel but to leave the boat for a few days. Once I had attempted to reversed FS into the lock, (no easy feat with a boat already in it) Ian then stern hauled me in. Freddy ( as we found out his name later) suggest roping the two boats together so he could take us to the boatyard. What a star he was so Freddy, if your reading this, a very big thank you for helping us out.

Our saviour Freddy

Having taken nearly 89 litres we set off for the lock. A boat had passed us earlier on it's way to the lock but we didn't think we would make it in time before it ascended. Luck was again on our side as a descending boat delayed his passage. After sidling next to him I found out the boat was Serafina another fellow blogger but not one I had come across until now. Kelvin and Rachael were from Australia, another couple from across the seas. Small world 'ain't it, first Kiwi's and now Aussies!!! We stayed with them until we got to above Iron Bridge lock where we again said our farewells. Really hope to see them again as we all got on so well in the short space of time and would love to have a proper bloggers meeting.

So typically, the Met office got it wrong. It didn't rain at 1pm and we could have continued on further. In a way I wish we had. Some sort of party is going on across the canal at the playing fields and the music is that loud and certainly not to our taste.!!! Are we getting old fuddy duddies I hear one ask???? Ian suggested moving on but I was against it, surely it cant go on all night............. can it? Question Mark

Then as I was trying to make FS sound proof (Cratch cover side down all windows shut) what should come past but another two boats back to front! This time the boat Merlin had his throttle cable break several miles away and Theo was taking him all the way back to Copper Mill. Just when we thought we were unique and the only boaters to have done the push me pull you bit and then another comes along to spoil the illusion!

Only three photos today.

Reed Warbler

I wonder how far North these parrots get?

1 comment:

Kelvin and Rachael said...

Ian and Irene,

Enjoyed our time cruising together today too! We were worried about today's weather report as well but cruised all the way to Apsley, still dry as a bone!


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