I was up and out at 08:30 on a very cold morning so Brenda stayed abed awhile. She delivered me a steaming bowl of hot porridge and a hot drink once she had got up, but stayed indoors herself. It was a bitterly cold North wind we were travelling into along the Paddington Arm. Having used our copy of Nich’s as a guide we planned to stop at Sainsburys twixt bridges 11 and 12 for a water-fill. When we couldn’t see the waterpoint we remembered that our old copy was also wrong when we tried to do this same action during our last visit. Just past bridge 12 there is a nice new wharf on the north bank with plush new water and electricity points installed – unfortunately they were not operational. London welcomes boaters.
We did manage to stop for water at the entrance to Little Venice. A small group of Christians were leafleting boats and invited us to attend their Easter services. Brenda explained we were not staying and was asked where we were going. She said we were boating but that was obviously not enough of an explanation. Round these parts boats are obviously not for travelling on.
Then three gentlemen met up on the sani-station steps and started to chat. They were talking about the attempted misappropriation of one of them’s shirt. The tea-leafs reason was that it was a prison shirt and the chap would not need it as he’d be going straight from court to prison again later today. The talk moved on to the merits of sneaking out your prison clothes at the end of a stretch and selling them as ‘souvenirs’ on Ebay. Would you get caught or not? That topic exhausted they moved onto the topic of ornithology. What was the differences between a hen harrier and a gyr falcon, how many ghost stories are really barn owl sightings and the rise of turtle dove numbers in London since the 1950s. I wonder what the lag went down for?
We moored in Paddington basin, under St Marys hospital, opposite M&S headquarters. Then we went walkies; onto the Edgware road and down as far as Marble Arch where we found these Jelly Babies. Then a little walk as far as Selfridges on Oxford Street, but we soon got fed up with the crowds and made our way back to the boat for a cuppa. All of the Persian, Lebanese, Malay and so forth restaurants on Edgware road should keep us fed for a day or two. We’ll no doubt stock up at the ethnic grocers as well!