Sunday, 31 May 2015

The Three Boat Painter

This is the blog post I should have written last night but was just too damned lazy to move my fingers after a solid day of cruising.  I had mentioned we had moored at Beale Park but realised this was incorrect when we passed the park in the morning.  We’d actually moored beside Pangbourne Meadow.

It was an early start for us (7am) and we managed to complete the first three locks on self service.  Jan prefers to do the locks herself.  She tells me it’s because they are more gentle to fill and we do them quicker on our own.  I suspect it’s more a case of the pleasure she gets from pushing the lock keeper’s buttons!

We passed ‘nb Ploddin’ Along below Goring Lock.  There was no sign of life so I sounded the horn.  Then I realised Louise was slaving away in the galley making breakfast for John who was still in bed. <note to myself to cease having these fantasies'>!

It’s a short distance from Goring to Cleeve Lock where we stopped above to lock to top up the water tank.  The diameter of the EA ‘bulk filling’ water hose is significantly larger than your standard garden hose however the pressure wasn't that great. By the time we had filled the tank the lock keeper had arrived.  You can set your watch by these lock keepers!

Both Jan and I remembered the bridge at Wallingford.  There are more dry arches than wet, an indication of just how much the river level can rise after heavy rain.

 The day was still early by the time we reached Wallingford so we pressed on.
This part of the Thames is looking very familiar.  It was May 2012 that we were able to at last escape from the receding flood waters on the Kennet & Avon and make a dash north having purchased a 3 day Thames license. 

There is a sharp left turn where this house is located on the bend.  A very nice looking home which isn't owned by Rolf Harris!

Three female boat painters were crowding around Clifton Lock.  After looking at the size of their paint brushes it was obvious we wouldn't be employing them.  Not only were their brushes tiny, they also wanted to sketch the boat first. 

We remembered nb Tardis from our last visit.  It doesn't look like it’s moved in the intervening three years.

Didcot power station seems to stalk you as you cruise between Days and Culham Locks.

We caught up with nb Petrus at Culham Lock and followed it to Abingdon.  The crew had warned us moorings in Abingdon would likely be scarce as it is a very popular spot.  We actually remembered this from May 2012.   To everyone’s surprise moorings were plentiful.  We have a nice mooring and the locals have already called in to see what Jan has on offer.

Those of you who read blog comments might have noticed Marilyn’s (nb Waka Huia) comment about me being ‘boat bitch’.  Her David retired early and subsequently became house bitch, PA Bitch, Admin Bitch and IT Help Desk Bitch.  It appears early retirement can be a real bitch!


John and Louise said...

Hi Tom
I wish I was still in bed, but sadly not. I was in the bathroom, otherwise engaged. That's enough info as I don't want you having anymore strange fantasies !!!

Tom and Jan said...

Don't spoil everything by telling me it was John in the galley cooking breakfast! :-)

Paul (from Waterway Routes) said...

I hope we'll get a second blog tonight.

Tom and Jan said...

Yes..... lazy for one day only!

Jaqueline Biggs said...

This was a great post Tom. A two belly laugh rating. We only made it to Reading in 2013. We look forward to finishing our interrupted trip. In the meantime we've been traveling vicariously with you and Jan.

Daykin said...

Tom - Did you notice something lacking at Didcot Power Station ?

Tom and Jan said...

Hi Jaq,
Hope you have your seatbelt on tight coz the ride gets bumpy at times!

Tom and Jan said...

Yes..... Didcot power station wasn't puffing out any white clouds! :-)