Thursday, 28 July 2016

Lending a hand

This morning started quite bright and sunny. I walked back to the marina where the car was parked, and drove down to Pitstone Wharf, where there's a little car park right by the canal. From there I walked down to the bottom of the three Seabrook Locks, where I was meeting Les and Jaq on board Valerie, to help them up a few locks. Les isn't well, and much to his frustration can't do all the things he used to be able to. A couple of boats were coming down the first lock; at the second we had to wait while the local CRT chap ran some water down into the very low pound. Above the locks I swung the bridge. The lower of the first two Marsworth locks was empty, with a pair of boats coming down the one above.

We carried on past Marsworth Junction. I haven't been here since the new houses were finished. I actually quite like them; they're upside down, with bedrooms on the ground floor and a big open plan space upstairs with a cathedral ceiling. However, whether they suit Marsworth Junction is another question!

We went up one more lock, and moored by the reservoir. It had taken around two and a half hours, which wasn't bad considering the wait at the second lock. We sat out on the towpath to have lunch -- and at one point there was a brief shower of rain, even though the sky was mostly blue and the sun was still shining.

I said goodbye to Les and Jaq, glad to have been able to help in a small way. I'd got most of the way back to the car when the rain started in earnest, and I was a bit wet by the time I arrived at the car park. The whole stretch is about two and a half miles, and I'd walked it all in both directions so I've had good exercise today. The rain as I drove back to Cosgrove was quite heavy.

Back at Briar Rose, the solar panel had charged the batteries a bit during the morning, but not really enough. I also thought that if I ran the engine for a while it would give me some hot water, so I decided to go and turn around. I went down to the lock, turned just above, and then returned to the village. I moored before where I'd been last night, as it's a bit more open, and should be better if there's any more sunshine.

After I'd moored up, I was chatted to the people on a boat behind, Flora Dora, which I recognised from some of the St Pancras tidal Thames cruises we've done with Sue and Richard on Indigo Dream; it also turned out we'd probably met them at the Angel Canal Festival in London a couple of years ago. While I was talking to them, Linda and Richard (and Muffin) came past on Mary H, so they pulled in and we had a fifteen minute catch up; coincidentally, the other time we'd met them was when they came to see us at the Angel Festival!

A couple of hundred yards, 0 locks. (1 miles, 0 locks)


1 comment:

Jaqueline Biggs said...

You really blessed us with your help and friendship Adam. We are so pleased to be here at Marsworth Reservoirs at last! It was so quiet last night and (after getting up at 2:30 and 5:30 to get Les his meds) I managed to get 6 hours of decent sleep and Les rose at 9:45. We haven't had that luxury in a long time. Nearly a month and a half! Sorry you got drenched. Don't forget the dinner invitiation for you and Adrian sometime in the future.
Jaq and Les xxx