Sometimes you have have to sieze the moment, and today was one of those days.
The original plan had been to do two boat tests over two days -- one at Redhill Marina this afternoon and one at Calcutt tomorrow. However, the weather forecast for today was pretty awful, so yesterday we made the decicion to postpone the test (which was a shame, because we'd already had to call it off a number of times last week); the forecast for tomorrow was good, so I decided to come up to the boat as planned.
So this morning, I finished my third night shift at 8am, had a meeting about pension changes at 9am, and by 10am was on the M1 heading north. It was surprisingly sunny in London, and indeed all the way north. I kept wondering when I'd reach the forecast heavy cloud. The fifteen miles of roadworks with a 50mph limit get more tedious each time, even in sunshine.
When I got to Rugby, I stopped as Tesco to get some food for a couple of days. While I was there, I had a text from the boat builder's wife saying it was a shame we'd postponed today, as it was actually very sunny! This seemed like too good an opportunity to miss, so once I got to Briar Rose, I started making phone calls. I knew Andy the photographer wouldn't be able to get up here in time, but his predecessor David lives quite close to Redhill. Within a few minutes, everything was in place; I made a quick sandwich for lunch, then set off up the M1. It was still sunny, and we made the most of Redhill Lock (which is open at both ends under current conditions on the River Soar) and the bridge which goes over it, as a backdrop for the photos.
The whole area is dominated by the Ratcliffe-on-Soar power station, now probably best known for the attempted invasion by environmental activists.
By the time I got back to Brinklow it was almost dark, and was getting quite chilly. I've got the fire going, and as I've now been up for 26 hours, will soon be off to bed.
Of course tomorrow's forecast has gone from good to bad, so I'm hoping it'll be as wrong as today's was.