Tuesday, July 16, 2013

Why it pays to start boating late & not jog between locks!

We had a lovely relaxing day yesterday after Sunday's Thames adventure.  In the evening we went to the Fox at Hanwell as its was their special Pizza night - it was very nice too.

Talking of foxes, at around 22.00 we heard this strange high pitched bark just outside the boat.  I said to Elaine that I reckoned it was a fox.  The dogs were going a bit mental, so I googled fox noises, and there it was - loud and clear, the fox 'alarm bark'.  We have been cruising all over the countryside and we hear our first fox in London!

It was a lovely sunset and with the promise of another hot day ahead we decided to be real boaters and get up early today, to avoid the heat.

We were on the move at 7.30 am ... still not as early as some boaters, but it was a start!

Into the first lock ... oh, isn't it lovely, no one around apart from the early morning keep fit nutters, oh, and people that go to work and keep this country great!

Into the first pound ... look at that early morning light, you don't see that when you lay stinking in bed!

Up the locks we shot like a startled gazelle.

Then we got to the third pound ... disaster - the bloody tide was out!

So there is moral of the story ... lay in bed, get going late, then by the time you get to the problem it is already sorted by the early morning brigade!

Elaine suggested to me that as I am a fat bastard getting a bit of a belly that I jogged up the remaining locks and start letting some water down.  Good idea, says I, with my nice new camera clipped onto my belt, in its genuine Lumix leather carry case, and off I went!.  I didn't even get to the next lock when the camera jumped out of its cheap, crappy imitation plastic case and bounced along the concrete.  Why couldn't it have landed on the nice, soft grass?!!  At least it didn't go in the canal!  Majorly pissed off I expected the worst, but it still worked, but there was a small problem ... it had dented the case and I couldn't open the flap to remove the battery and SD card.  To my surprise the case was aluminium, not plastic ... I thought, I know what I will do, I will send the camera and an empty beer can to Tom, from NB Waiouru, and he can fashion me up a new case with his Leatherman!   

Elaine told me not to be such a lazy git and have a go myself.  So I did ... I did a bit of panel beating with a teaspoon - woohoo, all is good, as you can see by the pics.

Moral no 2 - don't jog.

Whilst I was fixing the camera, Elaine strolled up the hill to let some water down.

The Hanwell Insane Asylum sits beside the lock flight, there is a bricked up entrance that used to connect to the canal, for what reason I do not know ...

Still not much water but just enough to get through ...

This was a bit interesting - 3 Bridges, a road bridge on top of the canal, which sits on top of the railway ...

Then we took a detour.  As the boat performed so well on the Thames we thought 'bugger it', went back to Brentford, down the Thames, out into the Channel, turned right down through The Bay of Biscay, hard to left into the Med, and arrived at the South of France where we spotted this young lady sunbathing topless!

Not really ... she was on a most grotty bit of the towpath, next to a truck park with district views and smells of the Nestle factory.

Oops she spotted me!

We pulled up at Bulls Bridge for water.  I checked out the dry dock proudly sponsored by Mr Tesco ... look at the crap in there, I may send this pic to their PR Department.

Whilst on the mooring we did a major shop at Tesco...Hayes Tesco is very multicultural ...

Now how about this heat?  These temps we are having in the low 30s are very much like the temps we had in summer back in Oz, but it was always a bit cooler on the coast - we rarely got the 40 degree temps as they did away from the coast.

The grass beside the boat has an Aussie look about it as well ... sunburnt!

So here is tonight's mooring at Bulls Bridge.  Everyone else is moored up outside Tesco (and on the water point) two and three abreast.   We moored opposite on our own, do you think there is something we should know about?

If you never hear from us again may I say its been an absolute pleasure living the dream and writing this twaddle.

Paul xx

PS I had a nice chat, or should I say shout across the cut with Kathryn off Leo No 2, she has a great pic on her blog of cruising down the tidal Thames.

1 comment:

  1. Great post. Made me smile, Thanks. Have a good day. Karen