There was a lot of rain overnight, but we woke this morning with the boat on a slight tilt as the water level in the pound had dropped a bit. We set off at about 9, in much less rainy weather than forecast. We we got the short distance to the lock, I could see that the pound below was severely short of water.
As the long pound was already a bit low, I walked up and started running water down through the top two locks. As I was at the top lock I alerted Kathryn as to what was going on. She said she’d been bringing Sculptor back from the Crick Show yesterday, and they’d waited more than four hours at Watford Locks. Anyway, I ran water down for maybe 20 minutes, by which time there was enough in the empty pound. Another boat had joined us, so we continued down together. I later discovered that the lock below the empty pound had a paddle up just a couple of clicks, which was enough to empty it overnight.
Further down the flight, the pounds were full to overflowing. We had to let some water out the bottom pound, because the lock would never have made a level otherwise. However, we enjoyed our journey down the locks with two ladies who are classical pianists, and who have bought a mooring at Battlebridge Basin in London. There was plenty of synchronised boating between the locks, which was a new concept to them as they’ve had the boat only a week.
We moored below the locks a bit after 10.30 as we were expecting visitors. My sister and family were calling in on their way home to Cheshire from a half term visit to our father’s, in Kent. We piled them with tea and cake, and we walked up to the bottom lock when some boats arrived to go up. It turned out to be a busy time, as two also came down, and three more arrived to go up. Before they left, Rachel insisted on demonstrating her trumpet playing on the lockside. The trumpet, my sister explained, was a ‘gift’ from school for half term! A lady on one of the boats described the performance as a ‘work in progress’.
Once the family had gone we had a quick lunch, then set off again. I have a boat test to do tomorrow but it’s relatively close, so we decided to have another night out of the marina. We carried on past, turned about Cosgrove Lock, and moored in the village.
7 miles, 5 locks. (102 miles, 62 locks)