The forecast was right and we needed our wet weather gear today. We set off in the rain and murk at about 8am, heading first for Norton Junction. We spotted No Problem just beyond the junction towards Braunston.
We turned towards Buckby Top Lock, aiming for the water point. We haven't filled up since before the Crick Show, we wanted to do some washing, and we know the tap at the top lock is a fast one. When we got there we found a boat moored on the water point; it appeared his permanent mooring was just opposite, so I guess he'd filled up with water last night and then couldn't be bothered to move back. We knew the hose pipe wouldn't reach, so I knocked on the roof of the boat to ask him to move. He stuck his head out and said we'd have to breast up, as he wasn't dressed yet. We did so, even though it was tricky, and then treated him to the Travel Power and high engine revs as we got the washing machine under way.
Filling the tank didn't take as long as we'd expected. It's a big tank and a fast tap, and we have been careful. I went to set the lock, and as I did so another boat came off its moorings and joined us. It was an ex-Challenger share boat with a family on board. Mum and the two sons were on lock duty, which meant I could go ahead each time and set the next lock. From the middle of the flight, we started meeting boats coming up, which also helped.
I made a quick visit to the farm shop by the penultimate lock, and bought stir fry pork, lamb chops, and some veg, so we can eat for the next couple of days.
Once down the locks I had a phone call from Waterways World, who organise the Crick Show, about my photo used without my permission in the show guide. They apologised profusely and offered a fee, which I asked them to increase, given that we were discussing this after the event. When I'd complained, I'd given them one of my cards, so the guy on the phone asked how I was involved in waterways journalism; I asked whether he ever read Canal Boat magazine, and apparently he doesn't.
We were cold and wet so we stopped at Nether Heyford and had lunch. This afternoon, I've written the last of my mini boat reviews, and tinkered with a nearly complete full review, to take account of the fact that the boat won the Favourite Boat vote at the show. All afternoon it's been raining to a greater or lesser degree, so we're glad we decided to stop when we did.
7 miles, 7 locks. (13 miles, 14 locks)