As predicted, I was in bed early last night — in fact I was falling asleep at 7.30! This morning was bright and sunny again. We had porridge for breakfast as set of at about 9.15. As I was about to push the boat away from the side, a boat came round the corner, so I waited. This proved to be a mistake, as — at the steerer’s own admission — the boat with its little Butty went very slowly. He let us pass at the bridge beyond Baxter’s. There were lots of clumps of branches in the water, presumably from last weekend’s storm, and relatively few boats moored up.
When we got to Stoke Bruerne, there was only one boat on the moorings at the bottom. We turned in the entrance to the arm there and moored up. We walked up the locks to the village and along to the tunnel; again there were very few boats around, with just two or three moored in the long pound, and a few at the top. The hedge by the towpath in the village has been expertly layered.
We knocked on Kathryn’s door and had a chat with her, then went over to The Boat for lunch. It’s a bit of a funny pub, with lots of small, odd shaped rooms. We had a decent sausage baguette at a table with a view of the canal, under a rather nice painting of the Grand Union in winter.
We walked back down to the boat and set off. It took the usual hour and a half or so to get back to the marina, but it has been much more blustery this afternoon which didn’t help with getting into the marina or into our berth. We’re back tonight because we are driving up to Mercia Marina tomorrow morning for a boat test.
8 miles, 0 locks. (17 miles, 2 locks)