Tuesday 28th May
Today is the day we understood our need to have plenty of drying capacity on board. Graham woke up in a soggy bed! Not his age but a leak in the window above, so a duvet cover, sheet and mattress cover to dry out. Then we added two sets of wet weather togs, hats, shoes and other sundry wet clothes to drip. I feel sorry for those boaters who have paid good money and used well earned holiday time to hire boats in this weather. We wondered if the “we are doing 8 hours cruising each day” crew have mutinied yet? As for the guy working locks wearing an ‘olde school’ 70’s cagoule and flip-flops, cos he hadn’t brought the right clothes for his oh so English holiday . . . . .
Having spent a pleasant evening with Terry and Christine last night, we awoke to wave them farewell out of the window as they wanted to get through Stoke locks before the rain got too bad. We then set off at 9am and made our way to Harecastle tunnel where we had just enough time to fill the watertank before being allowed through. It was a pleasant treat to find the inside of a tunnel much drier than outside. We passed through solo to find four boats waiting to enter at the north end when we emerged into the rain again.
We then set off down the locks known as “Heart Break Hill” until we became totally sodden by the constant rain and decided to pull over for lunch. We’re still there and have no intention to move any further until the weather improves.