Tuesday 27 May 2008

Not Sailing Weather

Here we are in Sunny Norfolk, (NOT) We arrived last Wednesday got the Van set-up and settled down to a boozy evening with our friends, Broadsailor and his lovely wife Lesley. Woke nice and early on thursday to blue skies so off we set Broadsailor and myself to rigg "Poppy" his 28ft gaff rigged broads cruiser. all went well and spaghetti junction was avoided, all the rigging went on without a hitch.
Woke again nice and early Friday, but instead of calm blue skies we had gusting winds and were unable to put the sails on "Poppy", add the rain and that was the Bank Holiday weekend set, and typical of the weather we have come to expect when Jill and I come to Upton.
Jill, however, has had to spend her time since arriving with her Mother, who was taken ill on Holiday whilst in Bournmouth and sent home by Taxi instead of the Coach. Still, atleast she has been out of the wind and rain, most of the time.
Maybe, says the weather man, we will be able to finish rigging "Poppy" tomorrow and get some sailing in?????? or maybe I should stick to Matilda Rose.

Wednesday 14 May 2008

"Fitness Past"

Well, we spoke too soon, no sooner had the last blog been completed, Jill went down with a streaming cold, she really did not have a great day, having to do 11 locks but she was a real soldier. We decided that as we were making good time that we should divert up the Ashby for the last weekend of our inaugural cruise and suffer there in silence, well almost.
Then guess what?, I went down with the lurgy too, but mine is MAN FLU, I'm dying.
Today we cruised back into Brinklow Marina, Ouch!

Friday 9 May 2008

Leaving Tixall Wide

What a "bendigedig" (Wonderful) place Tixall Wide is, the bird life is beautiful, but all good things have to come to an end and so we departed waving out goodbyes to Eric and Elsie (Bendigedig) and Alan and Eiddwen (Shush). Turning south at Great Heywood we rejoined the Trent and Mersey looking to make Fradley Junction and the 'Mucky Duck' for Dinner. 14 Miles and 3 Locks later we arrived to be greeted by 4 dogs who took exception to Mutley sticking his muzzled nose into their bottoms.

The two mothers then started to show the two puppies what to do to show an amorous male the way home, but Mutley being Mutley wasn't taking it in very quickly and received at least 6 assaults before he got the message, typical Tibetan Terrier. Baxter in the meantime got on with his own business and left the woman alone.

Isn't it funny how when the Sun comes out to play, so do the Brits. The Mucky Duck was heaving. Dinner was fair and a couple of pints later we retired early ISH to bed (No Satellite Signal, Bloody Trees).

I don't know what it is about Fradley Junction water points but there is either a 'Challenger' boat moored, who has decided he wants to piss everyone else off and go to the Cafe for breakfast or as yesterday an elderly couple had decided they were going to use the water point as a drive in boat wash, the water point is slow at the best of times but in a busy period to block the point for in excess of an hour to wash your boat and pollute the cut, was little more than inconsiderate, but did give Jill a laugh as the old man inadvertently sprayed his wife with the hose, at which she took exception and gave the little man a dressing down.

Back on the Coventry heading south, on a beautifully warm yet very windy day, we cruised for 16 Miles and 4 Locks to reach another of our favourite moorings opposite Pooley House just outside Polesworth. Jill has been suffering today with a heavy cold, and although she put a brave face on she was really not in a state to enjoy the journey. A good nights sleep and a lay in should sort her out!

We are soon coming to the end of our inaugural cruise, we have to back at Rugby by Wednesday next, Car is being serviced and MOT'd Thursday. We have noticed, how over the the last 9 weeks, how much fitter we have both become, at the outset of our voyage we found that cruising and locking for 3-4 hours was hard work, albeit then very cold, whereas now we can cruise for 7-8 hours without taking too much out of ourselves. Long may it (fitness) and the weather remain as today.

Monday 5 May 2008

difficulties of walking dogs

Ever since the floods of last May, Baxter has become more than a bit precious about sticking his feet in wet mud - jumping into the sea was fine, but wet mud not good. Clear of the need of vets today (fingers crossed), I set off from our moorings to do the first couple of locks. Baxter didn't want to know, lifted him off the boat, had a wee & shot back on. Left him to it & walked Muttley a mile or 2. Moored up at Tixall Wide (where we should have been Friday lunch time). Set off with both dogs (& cats of course) to find a couple sat having a picnic with their dog - did they need me to march through with 2 dogs & 2 cats? You can imagine the mayhem! Turned round & headed in 'tother direction to be confronted by a rather aggressive swan on the bank. Gave it up at that point.

As we pulled into Tixall Wide we spotted bloggers Eric & Elsie on Bendigedig & their mates on Shush........that whiled away a few hours! Unfortunately Baxter & Ben kicked off a fair bit of testosterone & had to be seperated, unusual for both.

Having spent so long at Penkridge, our spare days have been eaten into drastically and we are now having to travel nearly everyday to get back to Rugby and a little bit of Landlubber living albeit in a caravan but the upside will be a little bit of sailing on the Norfolk Broads in a 28ft Gaff rigged cruiser belonging to two very good friends of ours, ironically with both the same names as Jill and myself.

Friday 2 May 2008

Staffs and Worcs

Well we are now on the Staffs and Worcs at Penkridge, we had past here yesterday, but awoke to a poorly Mutley yet again. We wound and returned to Penkridge to get him to a Vets. Another £150 later and all is Well, well not quite, we are having to stay here for the Bank Holiday Weekend to monitor his progress and if needed to take him back to the Vets.
Managed to post a few photos last time, most are self explanitory, however, the bleary eyed Male is Dave of Rosina, we have met a couple of times, normally in a Pub. Dave is stalking us to Great Haywood.
Passed , yet another old Butty, 'Gosport', at Gailey Top Lock on his way to the Festival at Norbury Junction, sadley didn't have my camera available but did learn how to fetch a butty up a lock using traditional roping techniques.
Oh, very rude of me, met an ex blogger day before yesterday at Gnosal on the Shroppie, sorry 'Blackbird' to see you have pulled the blog, you were one of the Bloggers in whom I used to live my life vicariously prior to retiring to Matilda Rose.