Monday, 30 March 2015

Crick Village.

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What’s the weather been like, well we have had just about everything while we’ve been here, except snow! I’ve been on several walkabouts and there are some lovely little areas tucked away if you have time to seek them out. We were here for a few days while we awaited some poste restante to arrive via the Post Office.

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The Cabin Boy treated me to a special roast Sunday lunch at The Moorings which is right next to the canal. We had been there once before with our friends and would certainly recommend it to you if you are passing. The beef was tender and tasty and the puddings were rather good too, perfick.

Sunday, 29 March 2015

To Crick.

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We left before eight o’clock for Watford Locks, not quite early enough though! The three C&RT work boats which passed us the day before had been left below the locks overnight and pulled out in front of us, bugger. Needless to say our ascent was painfully slow behind them. There were five workers, the lock keeper and us helping them, which made it a tad quicker. Lovely clear skies along to Crick Tunnel where we caught up with them again pondering their entrance into it. One said he had no lights, so stayed moored, then we followed the little tug through which was pushing a flat in front of it. Although we hung well back a fair distance from him, his engine noise was horrendous. It seems the other one then found a light to follow. The first one waited beyond the tunnel to let us pass and to wait for his mate. After we had moored, they passed us once more.


Saturday, 28 March 2015

Norton Jucnction.

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Well it was a little quieter here, but the cold wind was gusting fiercely rocking the boat around. So much so, that the Cabin Boy almost missed our mugs when pouring the drinks. C&RT chaps were busy replacing the footbridge as the old one was rotten, apparently. 

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Just after we turned left around the Toll House and moored up we had a brief hail storm! Being perched on a high ish embankment we had some clear views across the countryside. The weather was rather changeable, as the sun hid behind dark clouds, then reappeared to produce a stunning sunset once more. However it was warm enough for us to go down to sit on the seat by Buckby Top Lock to do a bit of gongoozling one afternoon. Happy Daze.

Friday, 27 March 2015

Moving on up.

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We met up with a hire boat to share the six locks up from Braunston and as they were all in our favour were ascended quickly. There is always a lovely display of Primroses beside the top lock cottage. Then it was on through the tunnel to stay at Norton Junction for a couple of nights.

Thursday, 26 March 2015


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Narrow boat Millie M caught up with us, then Maffi and Molly came aboard for long ‘discussions’ over tea, evening meal and of course a couple of Guinness's! it’s always lovely to meet up with him to exchange views on just about everything. Molly ‘the wonder dog’ just takes it all in her stride curled up snugly on the mat by the fire. The Stop House is open most mornings providing help and information for passing boaters. Braunston is a very welcoming place to moor we find and the locals conscientiously look after the tow-path areas. Volunteer groups carry out litter picking, weeding and trimming unruly areas, then prettifying it with some flowers, perfick. A BIG thank you to them ,and all the newly formed volunteer groups who have adopted their area of canal to take care of. Boaters can also do their bit of litter picking, grass and hedge trimming whenever it is needed. We often do this wherever we moor up too.

IMG_8647aI picked up a free Boaters DVD in the Stop House Visitor Centre that Canal and River trust have recently produced. After watching it, all aspects of boat handling seem to have been comprehensively covered this time. It would be good if all hire boat crews/ new boaters were made to watch this before setting out on their boat.

Wednesday, 25 March 2015

Braunston Bakes..

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More delightful homemade goodies, a different selection this time too and most enjoyable. The bakers have a face book page and you can pre-order things via this which is good. The next pop-up bake is on May 2nd. This is a notice I saw in the Stop House about feeding the ducks and if it is accurate that’s a lot of bread that is wasted on ducks! Not only that, but it causes pollution in the canal too. The last sentence suggests feeding Oats, Corn or defrosted Peas instead. If you have ever stopped by Tesco in Leighton Buzzard you will have seen the worst example of this out on the towpath there.

Monday, 23 March 2015

The things you see.

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It was siesta time for these handsome sheep with a bit of quiet contemplation and a lot of chewing, baaa!

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Any ideas of what make this unique looking motorbike is then? This poor little rusty-ish Ford Popular had a notice in it’s window saying ’This is not an abandoned vehicle’ ha, ha!

Saturday, 21 March 2015

Solar Eclipse.


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I’m falling apart at the seems, another bit of tooth broke off, so an appointment was made with my dentist. We woke up early to a bright sunny day which lifted the mist off the surrounding countryside with it’s warmth. After breakfast we looked out to see the eclipse beginning. I went outside and holding my piece of special dark glass over the camera lens managed to get one decent picture. Then the Cabin Boy got the big guns out and tried his luck. He couldn’t zoom in with his camera as much as I could with my little one, so I got the best shot, lol. Then we were off to the bus stop where I propped myself against a pole in order to get a steady shot. By this time the light had gone darkish. With the moon between the sun and us it also turned very cold Then onto the bus and up on the hill the fields looked like something out of Lord of the Rings, with the returning mist spreading across, with a strange lighting effect.

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On arriving back we met up with Del and Al for lunch which lingered well on into the afternoon. We hadn’t seen them for sometime so we had a lot to talk about. It had also been their wedding anniversary which called for a bit of a celebration! We really enjoyed ourselves and we hope it will not be too long before we meet up again, luvly jubbly.

Friday, 20 March 2015

En-route to B100.

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The weather man told us that today was going to be a miserable day. Were we miserable though, I don’t think so! We took off, then found we had joined a convoy with four other boats. Just after tying up near B100 the sky went all dark and it pelted with rain, how lucky were we? This was such a lovely quiet spot, so we spent a couple of sunny days here all on our own, perfick.

Tuesday, 17 March 2015

Between B109 and B110.

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This mooring was on a nice straight run of tin with two others already here with an open field of sheep opposite. Nice we thought as we sat down inside for a drink, then we heard car horns blaring. It seemed that instead of slowing down drivers just parped several times, kept going, and hoped for the best! Planning permission had been obtained to erect weight limits on these lovely old red brick bridges, I wonder if this has made any difference? I always have a walk around the area and spied a BIG old tow truck at the garage on the crossroads.

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Nb Roots and Wings with Janice aboard followed by nb Futurest past us with a wave from Peter. While we were there we saw some dramatic skies and the farmer came with breakfast for his sheep every day. just before we left we saw a Mink running along the edge of the field which slid into the canal and swam away quite fast. Some Crows were squawking and dive-bombing at it, Sheep, Ducks and Moorhens also seemed to sense it’s presence.

Monday, 16 March 2015

Napton Village Stores & Post Office.

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I had a pleasant surprise when I walked up to the village Post Office as the stores have been taken over and pleasantly re-vamped. Part of it is a lovely cafe serving all sorts of local and homemade goodies, as does the shop. I sampled the soup which was simply delicious, then got my supplies in the shop part. The whole place was buzzing with customers to and fro while I was there. I spied this advert for locally reared meat on the wall too. Anyway, they are on face book, so have a look at their page for yourself, On the way back to the canal the occupants of this fine house couldn't afford to pay the window tax in vogue at the time. The three windows on the side adjoining the road had all been blocked up, thus avoiding the dreaded tax.

Sunday, 15 March 2015


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A C&RT chap was letting water flood straight through the lock next to the Engine Arm when we arrived. There were Donkeys and sheep in the field when we finally passed through it. See ‘Snow White with the Seven Dwarfs’ in the centre pic, and come in No21 your time is up!

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Soon we were on to the delights of the Napton Locks which were very low on water, about one to two feet below the usual level. We managed to haul out a large tangle of twigs and brambles before it fouled our prop. Then coming out of another lock there was an horrific banging noise and we could not move forwards. The Cabin Boy donned his waterproof gloves with extra long sleeves up to his elbows. On dangling himself down the weed hatch he came out for a sharp bread knife to cut the offending rubber fender off with tangled rope attachments. We do wish that boaters would not pass through locks with their fenders down. Not only can this damage the lock sides, the boat may get stuck, or the fenders pull off to tangle around someone's propeller, very annoying and very unnecessary!