Last night was very quiet after all the searchlights and tracker dogs had gone home to their beds. It was even quite warm as well so the heating will not be needed overnight after-all. We awoke to a cloudless clear blue sky and found the boat surrounded by swans and ducks.
Store cupboard challenge day 6 – part baked baguettes only a few months out of date. The bread surface had adhered to the inside of the plastic packaging . Once baked, the bread was excellent and the roughed up crust was simply extra crispy. Not a product to leave beyond the ‘best before end’ date but 10/10 for all that. And 12/10 for the weather that we’ve had so far, it has shown the lovely countryside off to it’s very best.
As we travelled north, through the long section between Cossington and Sileby locks, I took a shower and left Graham at the tiller. Coming the opposite way was Ann and Ian Street on board Copperkins and Graham managed a very quick hello as we passed at speed.
At Barrow Deep lock we felt proud to be British. A fit looking bloke on with his off-road cycle and a wan looking girl watched on from the bridge as we worked the ‘single hander’ ahead of us through the lock. As hard as I tried I was unable to shift the bottom gate. Did British manhood help? No only the young girl was man enough. As Al Murray says – Shame on you!
As we approached Loughborough the grassy moorings were as full as we’d been warned earlier. There was, however, loads of space because there seemed to be about 15 to 20 feet between each boat moored there so you could theoretically fit another half dozen boats in if they’d all moored considerably. Just as well that we were heading for the basin. With a wide beamed boat on the water point and another forward of that, waiting to fill up, Graham and Neil had to do some slick manoeuvring to wind in the limited space and then reverse onto the finger pontoons.
We booked a table for dinner tonight at the Basin Restaurant, not fifty paces from our mooring, and then went into town for supplies and a post box – the latter was inside the front door of Tescos opposite the basin. We passed a launderette between the basin and the town mooring, near Lloyds Bar (Wetherspoons) if you need somewhere to wait whilst your washing is doing. Graham also noticed a Castlerock pub, the Swan in the Rushes and so I expect we will take a pre or even post dinner drink in there.