It absolutely threw it down with rain yesterday evening and overnight, and at first today we believed the forecast which was for a relatively nice day. We set off at 8.45 and did the final two locks of the Stoke Bruerne flight. There was a boat coming out of each of them, which saved some work.
In the locks, we thought we'd better check that the horn and particularly the tunnel light were working, as they've been disconnected while the boat was painted. The horn was fine, but the light wasn't. The connection has always been a bit dodgy, so it wasn't really a surprise. We moored temporarily while Adrian sorted it out, using a connector block to replace the fixings. Once that was done, we set off for the tunnel.
The top pound was a very muddy colour, and full of frothy bubbles. Once through the tunnel, it was obvious why: a feeder on the offside was putting lots of water in the canal, and churning it up in the process.
Any sign of a nice day had vanished, and it was now raining properly, and quite cold. We stopped at Gayton Junction to fill the water tank, then carried on. We made a lunch stop outside Heyford Fields Marina, then decided to continue a little further. During the afternoon, the sun put in the occasional appearance, and by the time we stopped at just after 3 the skies had cleared considerable. We're moored in the bendy section north of Weedon, just short of Bridge 23. We've got the Virgin Trains for company, but that's true of almost everywhere along this stretch. We've seen an extraordinary number of boats moving today, especially given that it's November, it's wet, and it's cold. We met several at bridge holes, and some were going at an incredible speed. In one case, we spotted the bow wave well before the boat.
Thanks to everyone who left a message about the repaint. We've been told to be very careful with the paint for a while, as it takes time to harden fully, so we don't yet have the plank and pole stands on the roof, we're not putting cups on the rear slide, and we're not walking along the gunwales, in order to protect the cabin sides. Also (and anonymous commenter, this is for you!) we're not getting up on the roof to clean the mushroom vents!
Some more things we like about the paint job: the rear doors with the mouse's ears, and the registration number, which for the first time since we've owned the boat is readable. We didn't ask Andy Russell to put a place along with the number, but we rather like Registered at Poynton!
13 miles, 2 locks. (16 miles, 7 locks)