Wednesday 22nd June
Firstly, something I forgot to mention yesterday – as I approached our overnight mooring in Linlithgow (spelt properly this time) I spotted Brenda’s ‘Yeti’ that gave us the hassle on Sunday afternoon. It had been captured and was now tied to the bank at Linlithgow wharf.
We have been interpreting the local BBC weather forecast for this area. Apparently “You’ll be unlucky to catch a shower” means “You’ll get wet!”. Just our luck.
Yesterday Brenda was rather poorly, quite convinced that she’d got appendicitus at one point. Pain and fever, mostly gone this morning. She must have slept well because she didn’t recall it being dark at any point last night.
I rang Scottish Canals at 09:00 to book some lock and bridge transits and it wasn’t answered. Five minutes later the guy rang me back so we are now all sorted until Monday. We set off from Linlithgow at 09:15 – we were the third hireboat to leave the visitor moorings, the Aussies were on their way at 07:00 – and headed towards Falkirk.
We stopped at the Tesco supermarket, opposite the prison, near bridge 55 and stocked up on meats that we cannot afford at home, rack of lamb at £3.00, big piece of brisket for £2, scotch smoked haddock and more scotch pies – we can’t get enough of them. Whilst there we found HAGGIS PAKORA so we bought some. We thought adding Black Pudding Pakora and battered Haggis too much so we just got a photo of them ;^) Brenda also found a Lees Macaroon, a sweetie that she hadn’t seen for decades. It’s not as good as she remembers it to be, it’s probably exactly the same at 110% sugar but her taste has matured.
Back onto the boat and yet more rain, through Falkirk tunnel and so I rang the Wheel booking line, as instructed by our hire base hand-over brief, to book our transit through the locks and wheel. I was told in no uncertain terms that we should give 24 hours notice of our requirement so I just pleaded ignorance as I was following the instructions we had been given. As it was we went straight into the top lock and then shared the wheel with an ABC widebeam hireboat that had left Linlithgow an hour before we did. As we were called into the caisson, the wide beam showed us how strong the cross wind was and so I took extreme care when we entered. It’s a good job all those gongoozlers down below can’t see what goes on up here.
Once out of the bottom lock we turned left onto the Forth and Clyde canal towards Glasgow and then tied up for the night on the visitor pontoon. We then returned to the wheel site for a ‘tourist’ session. Will most likely wander back up there later hoping that it’s all lit up at night time.
P.S. at the visitor centre they sold ‘Wheel Ale’