Tuesday, 1 September 2015

Landed in Loughborough

This morning we woke to sunny skies - of course we did: it's the day after the Bank holiday so naturally the sun came out! I honestly do feel for the people who have gone back to work today after a very soggy day yesterday, only to look out their work windows and see the sun. I seem to remember times like that when I was working, particularly after Labour Day.

We were first at the water point this morning, although that's not saying much as there are very few boaters on this stretch of waterway. But hey presto, as we got to Barrow Deep Lock there were two boats coming up towards us, and as we went down there were two more ready to come up. It's the biggest traffic jam we've seen for days apart from the pedaloes, day boats and occasional narrowboat converging by the Barrow moorings - and there were none of them yesterday given the precipitation.

We pulled into Pillings Lock Marina for diesel and nearly left without it. They have some nice signage at the entrance to the marina, but the next set showing visitor moorings then diesel and gas are invisible behind the overgrown plants on the bank which I hesitate to call hedge because they aren't, and I hesitate to call weeds because they are probably wildflowers or somesuch. But for shortarses like me, the signs are so low as to be totally ineffective. So at first I started towards the visitor moorings until the sign for diesel suddenly became visible. A gentle reverse (with some cursing ...) and then into the correct lane. The turn at the end was a bit tight and would not have been possible with any finesse if Waka Huia was any longer - I'm not saying other more skilful steerers couldn't do it with a 70 footer (Mick springs to mind), but the gap isn't much longer than our boat and permie moorers are tied up quite close. Getting out was exciting, but with David on the front signalling the gap between us and the other boats, and the marina guy holding the back rope firm so I could pivot the boat from the stern rather than the centre, we got out without touching anything.

We thought the price was quite OK, and it is self service with a fixed proportion of 60/40. ~£58 for ~75 litres.

We stopped briefly as we came into Loughborough but too near a school and housing, so decided that we would move on further to where Tony and Helen, as well as John and Vanessa had suggested mooring. And here we are - blackberries beside us although they are a bit manky from the over ripening due to the rain, a nice open piece of towpath/cyclepath so plenty of opportunity for the solar panels to soak up the light and heat, and quite close to the centre of town.

Washing has been hung up in the pram cover, David has assembled the ladder/plank so it can be used without a quarter hour of faffing, and has discovered to his delight that it fits nicely on the brass plank racks. He is now clanking away putting the bike up on top, minus the front wheel. We have had it in the cratch for the last few days and it is a pain when locking, getting water, or hanging washing in there.

Shortly we are heading in to town so I can get a haircut and he can sort out something for the bike - so I am unclear why it is up on the roof right now. But all will be revealed to me shortly, no doubt.

It's another fasting day so we need to keep busy. Dinner tonight is going to be chicken with lime and tarragon (a Kirsty recipe - she uses cream and we use yoghurt) and coleslaw with lots of mint and vinaigrette. Yum, and it's only 4 hours away!

Aha, I am now enlightened - getting the bike on the roof was in the nature of an experiment - I should have known, as I am married to the original boffin!

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