Friday, 11 April 2014

Spring cruise - Day 8

It was a bit cloudy and cool first thing, but I refused to put a coat on!  We set off at about 8.15, with me walking along to set the lock.  Along the pound below I saw a mink on the offside, and then a heron catch a decent size fish, which it struggled with for a while before swallowing it whole.  The camera was on full zoom, so it's not the best photo.

At Church Lock, Adrian decided that his broken shoulder was now feeling good enough that he could try to work the lock - the first he's done on this trip.  He managed it fine; I thought lifting the paddles might be a bit painful, but he said it was pulling the gates that felt worse.  He then walked to Grove Lock and worked that too.

At about 10 o'clock we moored up outside Tesco in Leighton Buzzard to do a bit of shopping.  Less than an hour later we were on our way again, and tackling Leighton Lock.  By now the sun was coming out, and the temperature was rising, making it another lovely day.  

We moored up near the Globe pub as we were expecting guests for lunch.  Christine was a colleague of mine, who ruled our lives by being in charge of the newsroom rota.  She retired early a couple of years ago, but in the past year has been quite ill.  It was great to see her looking so well today, and hear about her plans for numerous holidays over the coming year.  Her husband, Jim, is also very amusing, with a great dry sense of humour.  They'd never been on board a narrowboat before, so got the full tour.  There was a mother duck and six ducklings who swam up and down several times looking endearing.

After a good long lunch on board, Christine and Jim headed home and we set off again.  I had a rough target of the top of the Soulbury Locks, but also thought that if I saw a nice spot I'd stop.  Such a spot presented itself just before Bridge 109.  We have a view across fields to the railway line, but we quite like watching the trains.  It seems odd to see our local Southern trains this far north, mixed in with the London Midlands and the Virgins.  It's really sunny and warm now, and we've been passed by what seems like dozens of Wyvern Shipping hire boats.  The other boat moored here is Miss Matty, with which we shared Cosgrove Lock at this time last week.

6 miles, 4 locks.  (56 miles, 54 locks)

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