Monday 27th August
As we arrived at Jannock a boat with a very similar colour scheme was heading for the bottom lock. Are you going up the flight I asked? Yes, but we’re filling with water first. Excellent – that gave me time to replace the oil seal on the gearbox selector shaft before we needed to set off.
Top tip of the week for a PRM/Newage box – To remove the old O ring, Select either forward or reverse and then remove the gear selector lever making sure you do not drop the ball bearing in the bilge. Pull out the stop lever and crank the engine over on the starter motor. Out pops the old seal with a bit of oil pushing it. Remove old seal, fit new seal and reassemble selector lever not forgetting ball bearing. We now have an oil tight gearbox again and Brenda can operate the morse control without damaging her wrist as the temporary second O ring I fitted last week made the lever very stiff.
We pulled out and joined them in the bottom lock once they’d finished filling with water.
Shock of the day – out of control spinning windlass to the gentlemanly crotch area 8^( (luckily not mine G.) Brenda admits to yelling a rude word, not quite appropriate thank – effin – goodness. Blokey heard her call and stepped back away from the spinning windlass, almost tripped over his flip-flop (no, not that – I mean un-suitable footwear) but continued the billing and cooing on the phone, which is why he wasn’t holding the windlass. Durr! He told his ladylove that he’d have to go. He recovered his composure and then his windlass and looked at Brenda and declared that men shouldn’t multi-task. Multi-task? – try being stupid enough to make phone calls whilst locking. Mind you, it could have been fun trying to explain the injury to the lady in his life though , when he came out of hospital that is.
Our partners decided to stop in the long pound for breakfast. Breakfast???? it was now 11:15! The was a singleton working up the flight ahead of us so I cycled up and asked if we could share with them instead. Up through lock 15 into ‘gongoozler world’ that is Stoke Bruerne top lock. How fantastic to find a blacksmith now occupying the old leggers hut at the tunnel entrance.
Is it ‘wiki-tunnel’ or ‘tunnel-leaks’? I asked Brenda to go for’ard and blow the whistle to let me know when to dodge the water pouring out of the roof of Blisworth tunnel as I generally get about 10 secs warning of needing to dodge that way. She insisted on me assuring her that her ‘whistle blowing’ would not result in her having to go and live in Equador. Not that she’d mind giving Equador a go, but not permanently.