Monday, 30 June 2008

Dundas Aquaduct

After the exertions of Friday, Saturday should have been a day of relaxation. However the food store required restocking so the morning was spent shopping. We also hit Marks & Spencer to change the shorts that Emma had bought Geoff for Fathers day. Since he hates shopping for clothes he was a real grumpy bear!! My vivid shopping trolley which everyone laughed at me for buying proved very useful as it was a fair walk back to Petroc and the last bit uphill. I felt justified in my purchase of said article when the lady assistant in M&S admired it!!

The rest of the day was quite relaxing with Wimbledon to watch in the afternoon. We couldn't get a brilliant picture on the TV but it was sufficient to watch. Geoff strolled up to Bathampton to check out the church times and the pub for Sunday.

From mid afternoon onwards lots of boats, mainly hire boats, came past en route down to Bath. The majority of these were going far too fast and one wonders if the hire company actually does brief them to slow down past moored boats. A lot were full of groups, mainly male, obviously intent on hitting the fleshpots of Bath for Saturday night! The beer bottles were already in evidence.

Sunday we walked up for the 10.30 service at St Nicholas Church, about a mile along the towpath. Two interesting sight along the way are shown below.

Modern Tree Art?

Scruffiest Boat on the K&A or modern Art??

The service was morning worship with a good number of the younger generation which was nice to see. The music was lively although we only knew the first and last hymns. We then tried both of the pubs and although Bathampton Mill seemed the nicer of the two, it was also the more expensive, so we settled for the George Inn. It was far more crowded than the other one, but we were early enough to get a table and had an acceptable lunch at a reasonable price. They even had my favourite steamed syrup sponge so I was able to be really wicked!

Back at Petroc we saw the return of many of yesterday's hire boats one of which, quite obviously deliberately, went past at a rate I have never seen a narrowboat go before. I was not the only one shouting at him to slow down. Unfortunately he was past so quickly I failed to notice the name or hire company or I would have been on the phone.

Today Monday we had a very leisurely start in the direction of Bradforn-on-Avon. I walked with Ellie as far as Bathampton as I wanted a picture of the church. She was a very reluctant walker and at one stage I thought she would not make it there. After getting on board again I spent most of the morning sitting in the cratch with Ellie watching the world go by, and a very pretty world it was in lovely sunshine. Just after we passed Claverton, someone from a boat called out "Good Morning Geoff". Unfortunately Geoff had gone too far past to see who it was, so if anyone reading this was in the Claverton area this morning who knows us, perhaps you could let us know!! Otherwise it will remain one of life's mysteries.

When we reached Dundas Wharf we stopped to water etc with thoughts of exploring the short arm up the Somersetshire Coal Canal. Whilst Geoff was watering I explored on foot and discovered a cafe and small boatyard in a very pretty setting but very limited turning room. Instead we have decided to moor at the aqueduct itself as it has lovely surroundings with plenty of activity to entertain us.

Entrance to Brassknocker Wharf

Moored Dundas Wharf

Gentlemans' Edwardian Launch passing by

TV reception poor on the normal aerial so Geoff has had to wrestle setting the satellite up, but he succeeded so I have Wimbledon. Tomorrow we plan to continue towards Bradford.
The picture below shows Geoff with one of the many "King Bladud's Pigs in Bath." These pigs are part of an art exhibition which are in various places around Bath and surrounding area.

They will be auctioned off in October with the proceeds going towards the Two Tunnel Project.

Another of King Bladud of Bath pigs

The Two Tunnels route will use an old rail trackbed to burrow beneath Combe Down - the high ground south of the city - creating an almost level and direct route between the city centre of Bath and the Sustrans path NCN 24, 2½ miles south of the city - a gateway to an emerging wider network of routes

Friday, 27 June 2008

Return to Bath

Since we wanted to be back in Bath for the weekend we decided to have a really early start on Friday morning. We had ascertained that Netham lock would be open from about 7.30am so we set off at 6.30 and had a gentle trip up to the far end of the floating harbour before departure proper. We passed another good place to moor with plenty of space. It would have been much quieter but further from the centre and far more importantly no close park for Ellie!!

Far end of Floating Harbour

We went almost as far as the lock at the far end which gives entry back onto the Avon and thence the Severn. This is the route we would have taken had we decided to brave the Bristol Channel. We met a couple of boats on the way who were planning to do this. One was making his own way to Portishead and then picking up a pilot (compulsory), the current cost of this being £160. He hadn't found anyone to accompany him when we met him so he would have to pay the full price himself. Someone else who was delivering a boat was picking up a pilot to Portishead (£100) and then another to Sharpness (£160). He wasn't bothered about the cost as the new owner was paying!!

We passed through Netham lock at 7.30am. Both gates were open as it had been on our trip down. Apparently this is it's normal position except on spring tides and if the Avon is very high. The lock keeper told us that this is the only flood defence for Bristol, if the Avon becomes too high the lock is shut.

Approaching one of the river locks, note the weir!

The trip back was straightforward but long. We reached the top of Bath at 4pm after negotiating 13 locks. We had only passed two boats going in the other direction and no-one to share the locks with going our way. At one stage we picked up a motor boat just ahead of us and hopes were raised, but they stopped before the lock so we remained alone.

One of the bridges en route

Most of the river locks going up were quite gentle as they are very long and much wider than the double locks on the canal. The Bath 6 however needed more care as their filling action seems to differ from lock to lock and I do dislike being thrown around! The deep lock on entry seemed innocuous enough, albeit I had to climb on the roof to attach a line to the sliding poles. However once filling it was quite exciting and not to my taste at all.

When we reached the top there was one space on the 48hr moorings( some of the moored boats looked as though they were longer stayers!), but I walked up to the next mooring place where we had been on the way down. Sure enough there was space for us so Geoff came on up.

By then we were both exhausted, Geoff should have been more so than me as he worked all the locks, but I managed to cook supper and retired to bed just after 8pm completely wiped out.
We will have to stop these long days!

Thursday, 26 June 2008

Layover in Bristol

Our Mooring in Bristol

Centre of Bristol just ahead of us

We eventually moored in Bordeaux Quay which is right in the centre. The lock keeper at Netham lock had told us the mooring here was good in the daytime but might be a little noisy at night. However we did not have a problem, although we were not there for a saturday night. It was lovely to be moored in the midst of lots of activity, both on the shore and on the water. Numerous ferries and trip boats pass by but despite their speed there was little effect as we were on pontoons. The only downside of that for Ellie was that it was a 5 min walk to a park in Queens Square everytime she needed to go out!!! She was initially not impressed with walking on the pontoons or up the short flight of steps, but eventually need overcame her scruples!

Boe was still with us. She did the trip up from Bath and decided to stay a few days to relax and try and get over her jet-lag! Since she kept wanting to visit the shops I am not sure how relaxing it was. As far as the actual town and shops were concerned we found them very disappointing. The shopping area itself is very outdated and has a slightly run down air about it, maybe because there is such a huge "out of town" shopping centre at Cribbs causeway. The other hazard to walking in the town was the cyclists. despite having cycle lanes on many of the roads, a fair proportion of cyclists seemed to prefer the pavements and they didn't cycle slowly!

However we had not gone for the shopping and there were plenty of other attractions, the best being SS Great Britain which Geoff and Boe visited and said it was fantastic.

SS Great Britain
Despite the cost we thought the trip had been very worthwhile.

Wednesday, 25 June 2008


We stayed in Bath until Monday morning in very pleasant surroundings, moored at the first set of meerings at the top of Bath. (Not the ones by the top lock) They were very open on the one side with views over Bath. The towpath is very busy with walkers and cyclists but as it is so wide did not cause a problem and provided lots of people who stopped to chat.
Bath was a lovely city to sight see in and much walking was done, although much more by Geoff than me. He loves to wander around cities but I tire after a while and much prefer to sit on the boat and watch the world go by!
On Sunday morning we went to Parish Communion the Bath Abbey, which had a choir full of youngsters and a reasonably large congregation. Once again several people including the vicar were very friendly, something not necessarily expected in a large church where they have a very high proportion of visitors. In fact when we went to visit the Abbey on the Saturday we found that they don't charge an admission fee but "suggest" a donation of £2.50 per person. We duly gift aided this amount and were told by the gentleman taking our money that Bath was the second richest church in the country because of the large number of visitors.......nearly asked for our money back to give to a more needy church!!
The Altar Frontal with the Vicar's matching vestments were very striking depicting water as the fount of life.
For Sunday lunch we went to The Boatmans Restaurant at Bathwick, which was about a 5 min walk from our mooring. Excellent lunch with choice of 2 or 3 courses at a reasonable price.

Daughter Boe arrived on Sunday evening. She had arrived back in UK on the Thursday morning after 3 months of travelling and she decided that a visit to Petroc would help her get over her jetlag!!

Monday we set off at 6.30 to water before doing the 6 locks down onto the Avon. Since the flow was not very strong it was gone 8 when we eventually started down. What we thought might take about an hours took nearly 2 1/2 hrs. This was due to going aground because of lack of water in one pound and a boat coming up the deep lock not checking to see if anyone was coming down and pinching the water! Since it is about 19 ft rivalling Tuel Lock on the Rochdale, which we went through last year, it took some time to empty for them and then fill again. Unlike Tuel Lane Lock this one does not have a lock-keeper.

We reached the bottom eventually and set off down the Avon with the intention of stopping close to Sainsburys to do a shop. However we couldn't find anywhere suitable to moor so that idea was shelved. There were some very pretty potential mooring spots but visiting boats were not welcome even outside one of the pubs.

We carried on down the Avon which was very benign and a pleasant run. Because we had heard of the high cost of mooring in Bristol we decided to stop short for the night as it would have been latish in the afternoon when we arrived and a waste of a night's stay. There was not a lot of choice of where to stop, although there were a couple of smallish pontoons we passed but it was not until we reached Hanham Lock that we found one that seemed congenial enough. There were also two pubs adjacent. It was OK for a night stop but we would not have wanted to linger. Ellie was not impressed as we had to walk her along the pontoon and up a slope to get to a small area of scrubby grass for her......

The two pubs were obviously very popular and full of young groups and families.....OK for a quick drink!!
We set off Tuesday morning and went through Hanham Lock where a notice told us to phone ahead to Netham Lock to check whether it was OK to proceed. We were given the go ahead and proceeded down the last 5 miles of the river. At Netham Lock we duly reported to the lock keeper to pay our money. We discovered that it is not exactly a mooring fee but rather a licence fee to be on this next stretch of water up to and including the floating dock which encompasses the whole of the Bristol Waters. It is controlled by Bristol City Council. For our length boat the charges were 327 for one day and £43.75 for 2 days. The next tier up was 7 days and when I said we wanted to stay 3 days he generously said we could have 3 for the price of 2!!!! For this we could moor anywhere we wanted he said except where it said no mooring or at the ferry stops. There are numerous small and medium ferried doing trips all around. However "anywhere we wanted" proved not to be so plentiful as we thought. We ended up on Bordeaux Quay which is where we had thought the only moorings were anyway. The lock keeper had said it was very noisy here at night as there are lots of bars and clubs but we have just had one night here and it was not too bad at all. We are in the centre of lots of activity and very close to the city. Once again it is not to Ellies liking but a five minute walk away is a small greened area, so she just has to brave the pontoon and steps several times a day.

Just before turning right to Bordeaux Quay there is a very low bridge which caught us out. As we approached we realised that we would not fit under without the satellite aerial being removed. In trying to back up whilst we did this we were caught by the wind and a lot of wellie was required to avoid bumping into boats and concrete piers!

Friday, 20 June 2008

Bath & Online again

Wow!! I have a computer again. I cannot believe how unlucky I have been this year with computers. I had just about installed all my programs on my brand new HP laptop, which was no mean feat both in terms of time and the vagaries of Microsoft Vista, when it died on me after 9 days use. PC World were very good and after the chap in the "Tech Guys" section had pronounced it "Dead on Arrival" I was free to choose a new one under the 28 day rule. This time I have a DELL and I am hoping for third time lucky. I briefly flirted with the idea of an Apple Mac but it couldn't fulfil my criteria at anywhere near the price of a PC. I have almost installed all my programs again.

My last entry was Devizes on Friday 13th (good job I am not superstitious). Emma arrived that evening, together with Parga of course. We had planned a 9am departure for the 29 locks and had arranged to go in company with Richard and crew on Andante. They had extra crew coming as did we. Geoff and Gill Smith had called to say they were free this weekend so the timing was great. They arrived in good time and Geoff parked their car at the bottom of the middle 16 and cycled back up to meet us. We had an excellent trip down in good company and managed to complete the 29 in just under 4 hours. The setting is lovely and there were quite a few sightseers waiting for us to do something wrong. Apart from my entry into the first lock being a tad too fast we had no mishaps, but going into the middle 16 most of the time side by side required quite a lot of concentration, and even then I am sure we added to the scratches on the side (it's a contact sport" I hear Geoff cry!!)
Once at the bottom we carried on to Sells Green to moor. We had been very lucky with the weather and the sun was still shining. Gill S and Emma hitched a ride with some of Andante's crew to collect their cars. After lunch on board we had a lazy afternoon and had supper at the nearby Three Magpies pub...good food at a reasonable price. I took Parga for a longish walk along the canal to tire him out. Although he had walked the locks he had been on the lead most of the way to conform with the regulations so he was somewhat frustrated. Inevitably he found somewhere to get into the canal and had his swim. He seems to be very partial to being rubbed down afterwards! Gill & Geoff departed after supper. All in all it had been a very pleasant day.

Sunday morning Geoff & I went to church in Seend. It was about a 15 min walk uphill. We had the time of 1015 in the Boaters Christian Fellowship hand-out but it turned out to be 1115. So we bought the papers and went the long way round back to the boat to give Parga a good walk and then borrowed Emma's car for the trip up the hill again. It was a good service with a fair size congregation with an excellent organist. The lady rector turned out to be from Cornwall, what a small world...

Monday saw us departing towards Bradford upon Avon. We planned to moor somewhere out in the country or maybe Hilperton but we found no suitable places so ended up in Bradford upon Avon itself. We moored near the top of the lock in a very pretty setting.

On the Tuesday we set off for Bathampton. It was only a few miles and an extremely pretty run but oh so slow!! It is almost a continuous line of boats between Bradford and Bathampton. We met very few moving boats and one wonders where all the people are who own all these boats. Some are on no limit spots and some on permanent moorings, but some of those on 48hour mooring did not look as if they went anywhere very often. There were some nice looking boats and some extremely tatty ones.

We managed to find a space at Bathampton just behind the cafe boat. As soon as we were moored I took up my computer and had two bus rides to PC World which is out of the other side of Bath. I returned later having left the new computer with them to install some software in order to do the updates with a good connection.

I then had almost two computerless days...such freedom.......

On Wednesday we both took the bus into town, first use for Geoff's bus pass....

Unfortunately it was a rather rainy start to the day but we managed to have a pleasant wander round the town and found a Turkish Restaurant (Cafe Marmaris) offering a 3 course lunch for £5.99. It was difficult to resist so we didn't! It proved to be excellent value and saved me cooking so much in the evening.

Thursday we moved on to Bath with the possible intention of continuing to Bristol. The weather was glorious again so when we reached the first set of moorings above the town we were seduced into staying. A phone call to PC World ascertained that the new machine was ready so I walked into town (went wrong so had a much longer walk than necessary!) and then caught the bus out the other side and collected it. I made a small detour to McDonalds as I had done on the Tuesday. PC World is on a small trading estate which only appears to have themselves and Curry side by side and a McDonalds.

Back at Petroc I tried to ignore the computer as I was expecting all sorts of problems when I tried to install programs again. Geoff took himself off for a wander around Bath. Eventually I gave in and started on the laborious task of bringing computer Mark3 up to date. Luckily I had all my data backed up, something I am now more fanatical than ever about doing.

Today (Friday 20th June) saw us going into town for a further wander and sight-see. The forecast rain did not arrive so it was quite enjoyable. We took in a load of books we had finished with as there was a place in the market who would buy them. We nearly got back what we had paid for the extra ones we had bought on the Wednesday!

Friday, 13 June 2008

Layover in Devizes

It should have been a lazy day today but we seem to have filled it very well. Shopping this morning and by the time we reached Petroc Geoff's arms were two feet longer!!! So this afternoon I went on the hunt and I now have a new toy...a very luridly coloured shopping trolley on wheels...Geoff says he will not be using it!!

At lunchtime Jan & Bob Allen dropped in as they were en-route close by. It was lovely to see them.
Early afternoon Epiphany with John & Fi arrived and as there were no mooring spaces left they have breasted up to us. They have come for the Meeting being held here by British Waterways in one of the local hotels.
We met Peter from Gospel Belle who is one of the roving ministers of the Boaters Christian Fellowship and had a pleasant chat.

Thursday, 12 June 2008


Pleasant four and a half hour trip today, although the last few miles were somewhat frustrating as we were behind a crawler again. We do not go at any great pace but feel that 1.5 knots is just a tad slow! We left Pewsey just before 8 and stopped to fuel at Gibsons boat services by bridge 124. The small services there was beautifully kept and we duly admired his extremely neat garden. Fuel was 95p a litre which is about what we were paying for the car this time last year! So much for red diesel being 1/2 the price of road fuel, it is more like 3/4 now.
However we have a nice mooring in Devizes where we intend to remain until we tackle the 29 locks on Saturday


Wednesday 11th June

An easy day today, 1 lock and 3 miles!! I walked the 3 miles for my exercise as the towpath is good along here. We shared the lock with another boat the first time for ages we had done that. Since I was walking I nobly said they should go ahead and what a mistake that was. They then crawled along and I was in Pewsey long before them. The mooring possibilities did not look hopeful so I called John Slee to ask him where he was. I discovered he was almost adjacent to me but moored outside another boat so I had not seen him! Ascertained that there was nothing further ahead so went back to stop Geoff coming too far. There are 48hour moorings there but mostly it appeared they were taken up by much longer term boats. In the event we managed to find one space where we could at least get our bows in for Ellie to get off.
We repaired to the pub for a drink with John (Fi was at work) and then he kindly made us lunch on Epiphany. It was our first look "in the flesh" as all we had seen was her pictures on the net. She is very different from Petroc in layout but lovely inside and they are very pleased with her. We were very envious of their two comfy armchairs but we had to sacrifice those for our L-shaped settee which converts to a large double cannot have everything.
In the evening Fi kindly drove us to the Swan pub at Wilcot where we had an excellent meal, all home cooked and a very friendly reception. Another recommendation for all boaters. You can apparently moor by bridge 117 to walk to it and we shall certainly try to do that on the way back

10 locks by 10.10

Tuesday 10th June

Now at Wooton Rivers. Early start today, getting better at it!

6 miles, 13 locks and one tunnel. After the 10th lock we reached the summit so it is downhill all the way to Bristol now. The tunnel at the summit is only 500 metres and was very well kept, no nasty drips as we went through. We have moored at Wooten Rivers just above lock 108. Glorious weather again, but luckily some cloud this morning so we were not overheated as we (Geoff) worked the locks. Another lunchtime trip to the local hostelry ...........will we never stop enjoying ourselves........we may as the forecast is for this lovely weather to end. The village here is full of thatched roofs and the picture shows one of them.

Great Bedwyn

Monday 9th June

Moved on today to Great Bedwyn. The weather has been glorious, but dare I say “too hot”. We completed 5 miles and 10 locks. Geoff as usual did most of the locks but I did do a few with a detrimental effect on my sciatica..........repaired to the local pub for a cooling drink on arrival.
A pretty village with an interesting stone masonry museum. The picture shows Geoff alongside one of the interesting monuments.

Back to Hungerford

Sunday 8th June

I returned from Emma’s by train yesterday afternoon complete with my new computer. Getting all my programs put back on is not only time consuming but also very frustrating. Now that I have been forced into having Windows Vista some of my programs are not compatible with it. My two accounts packages, Microsoft Money for personal use and Quickbooks for business both refuse to run, whilst a much older photo editing program installed and ran perfectly!
We went to St Lawrences Church for Parish Communion at 10 and had a warm welcome. A small choir and a large congregation, about 100. The Rector came to chat before the service and we discovered that he and his wife holiday in Cornwall and have visited our church at St Eval. He said how much he loved the church and the atmosphere both in and around with all the RAF graves and memorabilia. He also said how nice it was that the church was open. I must say that in most of the places where we have visited the church the majority have been open, only rarely have we found one locked.

NO SUNDAY LUNCH OUT TODAY!!! Geoff did not fancy either of the two pubs we found so we gave it a miss for this week, but with the proviso from me that this cannot happen two weeks in a row!!

Saturday, 7 June 2008

Still at Hungerford

Well here I am on my new computer at last. We all set off by train on Friday(yesterday), Geoff to Newbury and the gnasher repair man (all fixed, thankfully) and Emma and I to Kintbury to collect her car and return to Leamington. I was hoping that the vouchers to purchase my new computer had arrived and they had. So after a quick lunch we went to Coventry and after some deliberation the new model was secured. It is all very well to have a shiny new toy but reinstalling all my software and downloading all updates etc from the web is very time consuming and at times frustrating. The worst part is that some of my software won't run with Vista so that is causing me some headaches at the moment.
When Geoff arrived back at Petroc he found a note from John & Fiona Slee to say they had called. he was disappointed to have missed them but as he read the note they appeared from a convenient bench where they had been indulging in an ice-cream. I hope I shall catch up with them when we are a little further down. After their return Fi sent me some photographs they had taken of Petroc here in Hungerford and the one you can see here is John knocking at our back door!!

I arrived back about 2.30 and had a beautiful afternoon in the sun and would you believe the forecast for tomorrow is good....will it last

Thursday, 5 June 2008


Emma duly arrived on Monday evening to take us to Canterbury. Unfortunately we awoke to torrential rain on Tuesday morning and it was not a pleasant job moving not only ourselves and overnight gear from boat to car, but also moving two dogs and all their associated paraphernalia! The start of the journey was not good, the traffic reports kept telling us of very slow moving traffic on the M4 just where we were going. We contemplated a different route but we glad we decided to stick with it when we heard the M3 was even worse. After a couple of hours the rain did begin to lessen and we eventually arrived at our destination in dry weather with just a hint of sun. We were booked into the Woolpack Inn in Chilham village which proved to be very convenient for the 3 dogs in the party. Parga with Emma, Ellie with us and Duke with nephew Marc. We had 3 adjacent rooms all with french windows opening out into a fully enclosed garden area. We just left all three doors open and they wandered into whichever room they fancied.....although Geoff was not too impressed when Duke wandered in and nuzzled his ear in the middle of the night!!
Brother John's memorial service in Barham Church and the scattering of his ashes in the same place as his Fathers at Barham Cemetry went well and a gathering of family and close friends all had dinner and stayed at the Woolpack Inn for the night.
On Wednesday as arranged Emma drove us back to Kintbury. However about 2/3 of the way back she began to feel unwell and by the time we arrived at Petroc she had to be put to bed with a high temperature and aching all over. She called in to say she would not be in to work on Thursday as she wasn't capable of driving back to Leamington.
Since we wanted to press on it was decided that she would travel with us for the next few days as far as Great Bedwyn and then catch the train back to her car at Kintbury.
When we had arrived back the previous evening we found that our clean boat was no longer. It had apparently rained solidly all day at Kintbury and in addition someone had had a huge bonfire so we were covered in leaves and ash!
Before leaving we watered and cleaned the boat again. Since this was to be the first time we had travelled with Parga, as opposed to just visiting, I decided to walk as far as Hungerford to wear him out. He has a lot to learn about being a boat dog!!! He was unable to cope with the boat going without him and twice jumped into the canal to swim after it. Eventually he began to get the message but not before he had tried so hard to get free at one of the locks that he broke his collar.....admittedly it was on it's last legs.
We moored in the centre of Hungerford in a very pleasant spot and after a pint in the pub and lunch, Emma and I went to buy him a new collar.
A phone call to the Curry's Customer Service elicited the information that the vouchers for me to buy my replacement computer had been dispatched on Monday so I decided that I would return with Emma in the hope that they had arrived and I could do something about getting myself set up again.
An early start was planned for the journey to Great Bedwyn but Geoff had a disaster at supper....he cracked his dentures!!!! A search of the internet revealed that there was a Denture Repairer in Newbury so the plot now is to depart from here by train. Emma and I will collect her car and go to Leamington and Geoff will carry on to Newbury and try and find this repairer.
Geoff is beginning to fret that we are going slower and slower and now we are even going backwards.........however we have heard that the water levels on the Thames are quite high so we are in no rush to get back there.

Monday, 2 June 2008


Excellent lunch in the Blue Ball pub yesterday so can thoroughly recommend it to anyone who moors here.
This morning we moved to the water point for a domestic time! Petroc had her first external wash and brush up this quite wore Geoff out so he has siesta'd all afternoon!! Weather still indifferent, only a couple of showers but didn't manage to dry the washing in between.

The rush of weekend boats has disappeared and there are only 3 boats here including ourselves. One of them is a diddy little boat called "Moles Boat" about 25-30 ft long.

Emma is coming tonight to collect us for Geoff's brother John's memorial service. After that Geoff is threatening to "press on" to Bath...I trust that does not mean he will give up his nice relaxed travelling attitude!

Sunday, 1 June 2008


Glorious day yesterday (Sat). We walked into Hungerford along the towpath and treated ourselves to coffee & cake on arrival. I caught the bus back but Geoff walked. I wanted to try out my new universal bus pass for we old folk! For a journey which would have taken 5 mins on the train I had an exciting half hour bus ride through some very narrow country lanes. We seemed to be going at at rate of knots but it was probably deceptive and anyway it was free!!! Spent the afternoon with chair out on towpath in the sunshine and also managed to get the washing done and largely dried.....however all good things come to an end and we awoke to rain yet again this morning.....
A horse drawn tripper boat operates in this area so he passed by several times. The crew leading the horse had to walk along the roofs of our boats to hold the line above all the obstructions there.
This morning (Sunday 1st June) we went to the local Church and it was Family Communion. Quite a few children and a reasonably sized congregation with a choir. The vicar (lady) talked about the building of one's house on rock or sand with the use of lots of props.....the kids thought it was great fun. A good service and everyone very friendly again.
Lunch is booked in The Blue Ball pub for where we shall shortly depart. Rain has stopped but very gloomy and forecast not good.
We had an email from Ten Bob Note to say they had been stuck at the lock at Benson because the Thames was high and the boards were on red. Think they were downgraded to yellow this morning so they were making a dash for the Oxford before any more rain fell.