Monday, 26 October 2015

Happy memories

The difference between men and boys is the size of the toys.  Today we received a number of emails and blog comments about ‘that’ car in yesterday’s post.  All of them were very quick to point out it was NOT a Triumph Scimitar but an MGB GT.  Obviously I’m not a petrol head!  If I’d asked for comments from the girls I’d have probably received.  It’s “brilliant white”, “pearly white”, “off white”, “light cream”, “enamel white”, etc.  BTW Jan thinks it is dirty grey.

We’re now on new territory for Waiouru.  However we have happy memories of travelling this way four years ago whilst on nb Kelly-Louise so kindly lent to us by Peter and Margaret.  At the time we were struggling with the consequences of our problems with the first builder.  The cruise on Kelly-Louise up the Llangollen to Ellesmere reminded us of why we dreamed of owning a narrowboat and cruising the inland waterways.  We will always be grateful to Peter & Margaret in assisting us to restore our dream.                                                                                            

We were two minutes late on our approach to Wrenbury as a boat had just closed the electric lift bridge.

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Despite having come this way four years previously neither of us could remember much about the route.  I remembered most of the locks but the canal seemed to be new!

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The sky was clear but it was cold in the shade. All too soon we arrived a Grindley Brook, our destination for the day.

Last time we were here it was very busy so Jan went forward with the walki-talkie only to find we were the only boat going up and two boats coming down .  One of which was the fuel boat Mountbatten which has a Facebook page <see previous link>.  I was able to enquire where they intended to be over the next few weeks and was advised they would deliver fuel by van if they couldn’t reach a boat by canal.  That’s handy to know.

There’s a shop below the bottom lock which I don’t remember from our previous trip.  We will have to remember to visit it on our return trip.

IMG_8507 I was attempting to get Waiouru into the middle chamber of the three staircase locks when she stopped with a thump as if we had hit the end of the lock with the bow fender.  But the stern hadn’t managed to get past the lower gates?

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There were two lock keepers on duty.  One was a volunteer in shorts <brrrrr> and the other a permanent CRT employee.  I mentioned the “bump” to the CRT lock keeper who told me that because I’d applied power to get into the lock (the propeller was fouled with leaves) the stern had gone down and I’d hit a length of railway iron which runs across the lower cill and is one inch higher than the cill.  If I had known that I would have altered my entry technique.

The lock keeper was also able to provide some information about the adjacent former lock keepers cottage.

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He lived in it for 10 years when he was the full time lock keeper at Grindley Brook.  The cottage had poor insulation and very thin glass in the windows.  It was sold about 10 years ago for £150,000 and the new owners have spent some serious money insulating, renovating and adding a large extension to the rear.

We stopped for the day above the locks just beyond the water point moorings  

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