Yesterday we did a marathon cruise from the bottom of Curdworth Locks (lovely peaceful mooring) all the way to Fradley Junction. It was marathon because we started out just after 8am and moored up at 4pm, having stopped
- to water up just before Fazeley Junction, then
- to clear crap off the prop at Hopwas (how's that? No rubbish on the prop through Birmingham but there it is in Hopwas! To be fair some of it may have travelled with us a fair way, and it was just the small thin branch that broke the camel's back) and eat lunch,
- and at Streethay to get diesel (68p - OK, Mick and Julia? Not the 50p in Hawne Basin, but better than £1.04 at Upton on Severn ...).
One other stop though was at Whittington, where we were waved at by Eric Wood from his conservatory. He then leapt (and I mean leapt) out of his chair and came outside to say hello.
Eric is significant for a couple of reasons - a veteran boater at 86 he is still boating. And secondly, we spoke with him and his wife and a friend when we were moored in Whittington back in 2014 - not from the cut, but on the street. As we were coming back from the Coop (nice shop that one), they were having a fridge delivered and we stopped to admire their beautiful garden. And thirdly, on our return to NZ that year, at a Zero Degrees' Club meeting, Judy and Jim Tulloch mentioned they knew someone from Whittington - turned out to be Eric ...
Now, Julia, it's just coincidence, not some great cosmic arrangement, OK? It's just the random nature of things that sometimes they appear 'meant to be' (yuk) when actually they just occurred and we created the connections between them - got it? Good. (What IS interesting about this happening in the UK is that the six degrees of separation is much more realistic here. However in NZ we generally have two degrees of separation - we can all pretty much guarantee that there are only one or two people between any one of us, in terms of making a connection. That's why we have a mobile phone company called Two Degrees - clever, eh?)
So yesterday we chatted with Eric, he remembers Jim and Judy clearly and offered us any help we may need if we come back his way.
|Hi, Judy and Jim!|
A lovely chap, and I wouldn't have put him at a day over 76, if pushed to guess. He volunteered that he's 86, and looks to be in fine fettle, and still boating as recently as the weekend. And judging by their still beautiful garden**, still very active there too, unless that is Doreen's work. Something to aim for, eh?
**Damn, should have got a photo of that too - lots of red, crimson and white from the cut.