Tuesday, July 3, 2012

Holy Cow!

We stopped last night at Platts Lane because we passed a decrepit sign that read 'Waggoners Pub'.  If possible we like to stop at a pub at night, if for no other reason that to check out the locals !  After tying up the boat I took the boys down the country lanes looking for the pub; unfortunately it burnt down in 2008, so back to the boat for a few instead!

We got going at 11.00 am today and started to follow a boat that had just passed us. After a couple of miles we were approaching a lift bridge that was up as we approached it and as the other boats in front of us were going through it.  However, the guy on the boat in front of us leapt off as they were going past the bridge and started to shut it!  I thought he hadn't seen us behind him, so I gave a little blast on the airhorn! Still he carried on lowering it so I gave it a bloody huge blast he turned and looked at us, waved his arms around, shut it right in front of us and ran off!  Elaine jumped off and raised it and the chase was on ... I thought 'I am going to sort this bastard out'.  I checked the GPS and we were going at at 3.2 MPH, but he was going at about 3.5 MPH......he got away......!!!  I think the problem was that he was flying a huge Union Jack off his tiller and as he passed us on our mooring he must have noticed the  Aussie flag flying off our tiller and he thought 'those Aussies ain't getting in front of me'.  All good fun though, I am soooooo relaxed nothing is going to raise my blood pressure!     
Lift Bridge Man in front
On the way along the canal we passed the Wales / England border - this is celebrated by a stick on the towpath - so small it wouldn't have even photographed !! For a while there we were in Welsh Wales ... Y Ddraig Goch ddyry gychwyn !!!
Later on we passed Blake Mere, we will stop here on the way back as it looks really quite spectacular ...

Next up, we went through the Ellesmere tunnel only 87 yards long ...

We arrived at Ellesmere (click on the link for more info !) - and went down the arm to the basin; unfortunately there were no moorings free so we had to chuck a 'u-ey' at the end (wind).  There were a lot of boats there so it was very tight, but a one armed man grabbed the bow line and bow hauled us around ( I kid you not).

We moored just outside the arm and were in the middle of shutting the boat down when we heard some very loud mooing.........

We looked out and found that there was a cow on the towpath next to the boat!

I had a word with the boys and we thought we could get him inside the boat and have him for dinner, but Elaine being an avid vegetarian would have none of it!  The cow carried on down the tow path and (this is not a lie), ended up at Tesco's !  He was led back down the towpath later and put back in his field.


After all that excitement, we went for a walk around Ellesmere.  We decided to stay here for a few days as there are a lot of shops, pubs and different types of  restaurants - tonight we are going Italian, plus it is dog friendly!   
At the end of the Ellesmere basin
 They put up their Christmas decorations very early in Ellesmere  ...

Plus their transport system is a bit outdated ... 

Maybe tomorrow it will stop raining and I can do my long-promised varnishing on the boat!  If not, we will go and find the famous mere of Ellesmere (and, of course, go to Tesco's ... yay !)
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