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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.

Tuesday 19 September 2023

The tale continues.

 Part 2

So having left you all yesterday with us just about to leave the mooring, pins were pulled and we pushed off just as a hire boat was seen coming around the bend.

You can see the bend from where we were moored.

Blue boat hard on the hire boats stern

So we hung back and stayed close to the towpath edge. Then another boat appeared. Gosh he was close to the stern of that hire boat, was he trying to hurry it along? But then... and it beggars belief....he was only trying to overtake that hire boat on the bend! 

What an idiotic thing to do.  A collision would have been inevitable had we been in full cruising mode. But why suddenly overtake there? The chap on the hire boat had beckoned him past so in a way he was the one at fault but why that private boater thought it was okay to do that manoeuvrer without line of sight was beyond me! 

So having eventually got going we set off again, our plan now was to make for Fradley. Sun was still shinning, we felt sure this time we would make it. I did have my doubts when the sky on the horizon turned a nasty shade of black though!

 And as we approached Streethay the mizzle started, the dark clouds were now almost upon us. Talk about mooring quickly, cladding pins secured, stern and front rope tied and a dash to the back and into the boat. Hatch slide closed rapidly and just in time too as the deluge hit. A discussion whether we stayed took place, a look at AccuWeather app assured us that from 2 pm no more rain would fall. With decision made that we would once more set off, lunch was had, the news watched and sure enough the skies cleared it was nearly 2 pm, it was time to leave. 

For the third time, ropes were untied and away we went. And again just about to put the power on to leave the mooring and a boat appeared. It had just left the wharf opposite the towpath. On the stern and bow were two people, pole in hand and trying to move the boat back to its mooring.  A struggled ensued as the wind blew the boat away from where they wanted it to go and directly toward FS.

  The struggle continued, there was nothing we could do to help and in the end the chap mentioned it would be best if we could get underway and for them to have a clear go at taking the boat across to the pontoon. We asked if there was a problem with the engine. "Nop" said he, "We just don't have one!"

We got to Fradley in the end, slight concern that all the moorings were taken but then a stroke of luck, one space near to the water point, we slotted in nicely. 

Bit concerned that we are surrounded by trees, the wind is expected to pick up overnight, just don't want a rude awakening if any branches decide to break. And my other concern is we have to wind at the junction, with gusts of 40mph predicted I think this could be interesting!

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