Friday, 12 June 2015

Captains Blog.

Canal Date 12th June 2015

Heading for Cookley (Slowly)


Since the last update in May I can confirm that we have travelled 50 miles without any gearbox replacements at all. I am beginning to think that it has now been fixed.

We stayed at Dimmingsdale for two weeks, most of which we were away with our other love in life Landrovers. We went to the Landrover National Event at Eastnor Castle. I was running the site communications. Nothing that clever; we were just issuing radios and making sure that I got them back again in time to charge and issue the next day. We also operated the information and control unit. It was an enjoyably but busy few days and was soon over. We then took full advantage of a very empty and quiet Eastnor Deer Park to recover for the next few days before heading back to the boat. It makes a change from the boat but we were still very happy to park up the Landrover and Caravan and return to the boat.

We moved on from Dimmingsdale and slowly cruised on down the Staffs & Worc’s canal. We have travelled this length of canal many times but it looks completely different this time of year. The early green mist of spring has given way to a forest of green; every tree and bush is in full leaf with spring flowers carpeting the floors and meadows. Wall to wall ducklings everywhere and the splendour of the blue shock of Kingfishers darting back and forth. The danger is that it becomes the norm and one almost stops being amazed by the views



Captains Blog.
Canal Date 20th May 2015
Back Home’

 We have moved on from Alvecote along the Fazeley canal through Fazeley and onto the Trent & Mersey at Fradley. From there we went on to Great Haywood and back down the Staffs & Worc’s Canal and ended up here – Back home at Dimmingsdale wharf. As is fitting for a pair of lazy pensioners we only moved when the sun was shining and then not very far. It is a run that would take a “proper boater” two days; it took us three weeks! It must be said that it was three very enjoyable and stress free weeks.

Just where the Staffs & Worc’s meets the Trent & Mersey there is a very wide stretch of canal near Tixall strangely named “Tixall Wide” This is a perfect spot for me to try to re-calibrate the electronic compass on the automatic satellite system. This requires the boat to turn at least two full circles and there just are not many bits of the canal that one can do that. I did two tight circles to Port but it did not work, I then did two more to Starboard and that did not work either. Oh well – back to the man for a repair then! While I was doing this I was getting more and more spectators. I was the entertainment for the day. I am sure that they thought I was drunk or just plain stupid. Now the second one is a bit close to the truth so I shall move on.

We moored up to get some shopping at Compton near Wolverhampton. While Pam went to the shops I stayed behind to mind the boat. I saw a boat approaching the lock at a silly speed; He slammed into revers and banged into our boat. He asked where he could turn his boat. I had no idea so he tried to turn a fifty-foot boat in a thirty-foot canal; now I am not a mathematician but even I know that’s not going to happen. He was revving the nuts off his engine forwards then reveres, mud and water flying everywhere. He did not have a clue! He gave up and started to reverse back, again on full throttle and again into my boat – twice and then into the boat behind. We managed to calm him down and told him he would have to go through he lock to wind. He tried to enter the lock. Unfortunately, he did not open the gated first, not only that he did not fill the lock and just for good measures there was some one already in the lock! He hit the gate with such force that I am amazed he hid not smash it to bits.
We stayed there long enough to sample the pub and the chip shop; both being better than average.
We moved on, once again not very far to Dimmingsdale Wharf. This is as close to coming home as it gets. We moored up and met up with David, the site owner. I managed to talk myself into mowing the grass for him. It is a large lawn and a small mower. It took much longer than I had anticipated but looked very nice once finished. I also talked myself into doing the same before we leave. By the time I had finished it my foot was very sore indeed.


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