We consider ourselves pretty lucky today, because the forecast was rain pretty much all day, and yet we hardly got wet at all. There was some drizzle, but never very heavy and never for long.
Before we left, we washed the side of the boat, as the rain last evening and overnight had washed off the Fertan, but only as far as the cabin side. It was a job to get it off, and not a hundred per cent successful. It was just after quarter to nine when we set off, wishing Catherine and co a very happy holiday as we passed Rowington. It was pretty blustery, and there weren’t many boats about. Having come face to face with Mountbatten yesterday at Gayton Juntion, today we met it at the blind bridge hole just along from there. We again weaved our way past.
Blisworth Tunnel was wet inside. There was a moment at the start where I thought our headlight wasn’t working — I couldn’t see a thing, and the nav lights weren’t helping. Adrian diagnosed that I’d turned on the bilge pump instead of the headlight.
When we got to the locks we saw Kathryn again. A boat had just gone down, and were also ahead at the second one but said they’d wait for us after that. From the third lock down there were loads of boats coming up, so there were several examples of synchronised boating.
It turned out that the people we were going down live live in the village in Kent where I spent much of my childhood, and where my father still lives. We thoroughly enjoyed sharing the journey with them.
At the bottom we had lunch on the move, and got back to the marina at around 2.30. The people on the first boat moored on the outside of the marina appeared on their rear deck to watch me battle the breeze to turn into the marina; then as I did my spin to reverse into our berth I could see their heads peering above the hedge. I half expected them to hold up score cards.
We quickly packed up the boat, then I dropped Adrian at Milton Keynes station for a train to London, and I continued the drive home.
14 miles, 7 locks. (30 miles, 14 locks)