Saturday, 14 June 2014

We're on the road again, back on the road again ...

The bridge at Swarkestone mentioned in yesterday's post.
Some photos wouldn't load for me for the previous post so I have added them here - only one photo from today. 

This mooring at Swarkestone is clearly mine!

This morning we moved into the marina and managed to get on to the mooring quite efficiently. The trick is to take it slowly, but I do have to remind myself of that as I am doing it! We certainly had far less hassle than we had at Barton Marina last week, that’s for sure. (After I’d recounted that adventure, Dave C told us they’d once been delayed a day leaving Bartons as the wind was so strong they couldn’t get out. – I didn’t feel quite so incompetent after that!)

We hooked up to shore power and it took about 30 minutes on bulk load to bring the batteries up. Scary stuff. We are going to talk with Tim about getting us a couple of solar panels this week so that re-charging them is not such a problem. We think that they and possibly a change of alternator may get rid of the loss of acceleration problem when the current alternator kicks in. We will see week after next when the work is done here at Aqua Narrowboats.

After brekkie (gluten free pikelets - which are improved by a couple of tbsp. of greek yoghurt in the mix by the way - baked beans and bacon), and a discussion with Mel re whether he was intending to come to Scotland with us (answer: Yes!) we set off on foot to Willington to catch the train to Derby. 

Three errors of research:
·      we didn’t consult each other about getting there on the towpath and David wasn’t aware there is access to the footbridge over the cut from the marina,
·      we didn’t check out where buses go from just outside the marina – having seen the Derby bus when it left Willington and the direction it went, we have a feeling it came right past the marina on its way … and
·      we didn’t look together at the google maps info on how to get to the car rental place from the Derby station on foot, avoiding roads. I had seen the footpath map but had not written down its details (no printer on board), David was using the GPS which isn’t big on footpaths.
However, we got there, picked up the car without hassle, but with another realisation that we are out of the habit of traffic noise.

We decided to go to Asda near Swarkestone (Lindsay had told us Steve had gone there, so we knew it was pretty close). I missed being in the right hand lane for the most direct way there, so we went through the suburbs of Derby – saw a number of shops selling eastern European supplies in one area. If there had been any parking available I would have stopped and phoned Tusi and asked if there was anything she needed. I am not sure where the nearest Polish shop is to Dalry!

I don’t really like shopping at Asda – apart from their stores generally being enormous, they are a Walmart company and the tactics that big supermarkets employ in gouging profit from their suppliers do not endear them to me at all. (Countdown, a Woolworths company in NZ, started doing it not long before we came over this time, and there was a bit of a boycott – noticeable near us in Johnsonville as the carparks were far less full and the New World supermarkets were decidedly busier. Hope it lasts!)

We managed to buy several things we needed but not others. We now have a first aid kit, a small cushion, a hoodie for David, a very tinny BBQ and 2 bags of charcoal (we’ll need the latter two when Olek is with us as he enjoys barbecuing, and we’ll also put Barry in charge of it when he and Pauline are with us, weather permitting). We did not find a battery driven clock, and shock horror, I forgot to get chardonnay!
However, I bravely decided not to worry about that, and we came back to the boat at the marina. Washing had finished but had pretty much drained the tank – the taps spluttered when I turned them on. So we now know the extent of the tank – two showers, sundry toilet flushes, one load of washing and several cups of tea and dishwashing episodes – good info to have!

Engine is on to heat water and it is quite soporific in a noisy sort of way – I wonder if it is similar to what a baby hears in utero and I am channelling my unborn self? Lovely and warm afternoon, but cloudy and that is not a problem.

Tomorrow we are off to Dalry to see the lovely grandsons. We are excited as we haven’t seen them since just after New Year. I am a wee bit anxious as I am aware that Olek has grown (his mum does keep feeding him!) and in our last phone discussion he told me he is 133cm. Considering I am 155cm, I think it is just wrong that, at 9, he is approaching my height! It was bad enough that my 2 kids were taller than me at 12 years old, but if my grandson becomes taller than me by the time he is 10, I will not be happy. He has been warned …

No comments: