Monday, 7 September 2015

A beautiful sunny day

But it was bloody freezing first thing yesterday morning! Yes, I know I am a wuss, but since my favourite fleecy got grease on the back of it making it not suitable for wearing in public streets, I am feeling the cold. Having lost significant weight around my torso hasn't helped either in the loss of the blubber's heat conservation properties!

But what a beautiful day it turned into, so no more moaning about chilly mornings, OK? Get it? Got it? Good!

We had left the very pleasant Loughborough mooring on Saturday morning and went down into the basin to get water – we had last filled up in Barrow on Soar back on Tuesday, so David had done an excellent job of conserving water for the 3 days I was away. 
Some lovely homes on leaving Loughborough

I liked this one particularly
This one is lovely but I wouldn't want to do the painting!

Fabulous huge conservatory on this one

Our intention was to get to Radcliff on Soar so that we were in a good position to head for the junction of the Trent and Soar yesterday morning. It was quite cold off and on all day on Saturday so my sweatshirt was on and off and occasionally I even had a scarf on. It certainly signalled the beginning of autumn.

We moored behind a widebeam across from the Redhill Marina – probably the largest marina I’ve seen, as it seems to extend for hundreds of yards along the river. But more imposing are the cooling towers of the power station …
Now how bizarre is that for a mooring spot?

One of the things I find strange** on rivers is that the bank is often so far about the water level – being a short arse, I find it a bit tough clambering up and down – well, jumping down is OK, but the getting up is a different story, so putting the chains through the Armco when it’s so far above the water is disconcerting …

** It’s not strange really, just different. And the banks serve a useful purpose in keeping the water in the right place, of course. Not sure if you knew that?

The intention was to be at the junction of the Trent, Soar and Erewash so we could be visited by the gearbox man – we have an oil leak which isn’t really a problem as I just top it up every week or so, but best to get it seen to is our non-DIY motto. So we left after brekkie and boated the last kilometre or so of the Soar in brilliant sunshine – chilly but sunny.

We didn’t know what the mooring situation was there so David had the binoculars out as we came round the last sharp bend and passed the yacht club where a day’s racing was being set up. There was a Waka Huia sized space between two boats so we aimed for it. 
This is the bridge just below Trent Lock at the beginning of the Erewash Canal. We are moored around to the left, on the Trent across from the yacht club and still within sight of the cooling towers.

Whilst moored we saw a few narrowboats and cruisers who don’t seem to understand the rule of ‘sail before steam’ and just ploughed on through without slowing down. To be fair a large number did go through at a crawl. But at one stage before the racing started nb Carpetbagger came from the Trent and another narrowboat turned in from the Soar, and they were side by side discussing who would have the lock first. The Trent narrows substantially at that point, and as the skipper of Carpetbagger was looking at the narrowboat beside him, a yacht was abeam (is that the right word?) in front of him – well, he didn’t have anywhere much else to go with two narrowboats taking up the width of the river. When a guy from the yacht club yelled at Carpetbagger to stop, he went into reverse in a hurry but then was not at all apologetic (read angry – but no swearing, to be fair). When he came along on foot a few hours later he told the guy moored next to us that the sail before steam thing didn’t apply and anyway the yacht should not have tacked in front of him … Discretion was the better part of valour and we said nothing, I swear!
Carpetbagger approaches from Sawley. Most of the yachts are on the Soar side, but not all.

The other boat approaches from the Soar
Two narrowboats side by side, plus a yacht between them and the shore

Carpetbagger pulls ahead and the skipper isn't looking where he's going. It's at about this point the yacht club man yells at him to stop as he's about to hit the yacht in front of him.

But what a fabulous find as a mooring spot - after the excitement and drama of the near miss, we sat and watched the racing.

Heading up towards Sawley

Come in the boat and join us, please! Don't turn away!

Coming back from Sawley with spinnakers out
Look carefully and you can see that the yacht on the left is about to run down a swan ...

The towpath along the Trent towards Nottingham is very popular with walkers and cyclists. 
This is the beginning of a large group of cyclists. You'll see that the person in the purple top stopped to let them go past.

As did two others ...
But wait, there's more ...

And more. But I think this was the last of that bunch - phew!!

In between times we walked to Sawley Marina – we were on a mission to check out the chandlery, but more importantly we wanted to see if Kate was there – success! Lovely to see her and even lovelier that she recognised us after 16 months.

We did try to shop but somewhere along the path David lost his debit card, so all of the things we bought (well, wanted to buy) are still in a bag at the chandlery waiting till we go back with MY debit card instead.

Freshly picked runner beans and a bunch of sage were purchased at a garden stall near Trent Lock, then we consumed chardonnay and rose on the towpath before eating a yummy smoked fish pie. I fell asleep in front of the telly and missed a stunning sunset – I saw the remnants of it before heading to bed.
No photos of last night's sunset, but this is the view out of the galley window this morning at about 7am. The mist on the water is beautiful and for the first time we could see steam coming from the cooling towers - I say 'we' but I mean me - David was still in bed waiting for his cup of tea.

We didn’t see the gearbox man yesterday – we think the weather was probably too good for him to waste working! So David went to see the guys at Kingfisher Boats this morning - they did the two pot blacking for us last year before we picked up the boat. They recommended Paul who came along to see us within an hour, gave us good advice about the gearbox, the screw that comes loose in front of the solenoid, winterising the boat for being up on the hard, and, before we gave him a cup of tea, he greased the rudder bearing but told us it was probably past it given it was so dried up ...  Note to self - grease it once a month - now why didn't we know that? So on the shopping list is a grease gun/pump thingie.

Today we have moved all of a few hundred metres down to Sawley, carried out a pump out, and moored up across the river from Sawley Marina, walked back to pay for and collect the things we couldn't pay for yesterday, had a few hugs with Kate and then walked into Sawley to go to the Coop - failed!! We couldn't find it, so back we came by OS map and paths instead of the hugely noisy road. But I blame Kate for our failure - she said Sawley is so small we would trip over the Coop - not so, darling!

I kindly helped someone(s) moor up behind us an hour or so ago and now the guy is rewarding us by sitting out on the towpath playing his guitar and singing - badly. AAARRRGGGHHH!!! And it's a fasting day so I cannot drown my sorrows with chardonnay, dammit!


Lesley Bateman said...

Yes I have certainly noticed that it is colder in the mornings now. Currently have no radiator in the living room so need to get the decoratoring done so it can be reattached to the wall. Laptop gone phut. Won't turn on, or rather power light comes on for about 4 seconds and then goes off. Luckily not that long ago I did a backup, but could do without having to buy a new laptop. Will have to wait and I will have to cope with just my phone.

Marilyn McDonald said...

Seeing as you are in spend mode, go all out and buy a Mac! Mx

Lesley Bateman said...

Errr, no. Too expensive.